How to Make New Year’s Resolutions (and Be Happy)

January 2, 2012

in Life Lessons

There is an anti-New Year’s Resolution revolution, which is understandable with an 80% failure rate for this tradition of creating long, impossible-to-achieve lists on January 1st. This masochistic activity is not a great start to a new year.

Don’t create a list, promising to lose 50 pounds by June; quit your job to create a successful non-profit; resolve to cure cancer by October; or go from couch potato to marathoner in the next nine months. This only leads to feelings of inadequacy and failure.

What I suggest is taking a more fun, fulfilling approach to resolutions. Check your bucket list for things you have yet to do. Think of what you often declare after saying “I wish I could” or “I really want to.” Imagine what will make you happiest in 2012. Here’s my list:

New Year’s Resolutions for 2012

1) Read The Two Gentlemen of Verona and see the play at the Shakespeare Theater in February.

2) See Addams Family at The Kennedy Center this summer.

3) Improve my golf game.

4) Launch Foodie & Fork

5 & 6) Two trips to attend baseball games in two stadiums I have not yet visited (attending games in all MLB stadiums is on my bucket list).

7) Rent lakeside or seaside cottage/house with kids this summer, possibly for two weeks.

8) Remodel my master bathroom.

9) Read the novels listed on my 2012 Reading Wish List.

10) Create Dining Wish List from 2012 Washingtonian Very Best Restaurant list and eat in each restaurant.

Be kind to yourself and enjoy life. Try approaching 2012 as a new beginning, filling it with fun goals. Make yourself a list with items you can’t wait to check off throughout the year. I promise you will end 2012 a lot happier and with many enjoyable memories if you do.


Eric January 2, 2012 at 7:56 pm

A wonderful idea, Kelly! Here’s to a truly happy New Year!
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Naked Girl in a Dress January 3, 2012 at 9:16 am

Thanks Eric! I am hoping for a wonderful year for you, full of rewarding surprises as you follow your dream.

Crayon Wrangler January 3, 2012 at 9:09 am

Be kind – I think that should be our biggest focus to improving ourselves. Can’t wait to see where this next year brings us!!

I’ve so enjoyed getting to know you over this last year!
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Naked Girl in a Dress January 3, 2012 at 9:15 am

I have enjoyed getting to know you as well. This is going to be a fabulous year for you! It is wonderful to see you start the year off right…by getting married to someone who makes you happy.

2012 is going to be a wonderful year for us both. I can just feel it!

AC January 3, 2012 at 10:07 am

I can help with Number 7!

Naked Girl in a Dress January 3, 2012 at 1:50 pm

Yay! We will have a wonderful time…as usual. :) Love our summer adventures.

kim January 3, 2012 at 11:56 am

These are awesome goals. I hope you get to achieve every last one of them.
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Naked Girl in a Dress January 17, 2012 at 9:36 pm

Thank you. I hope to accomplish each of them as well.

AC January 3, 2012 at 12:24 pm

And 10!

Naked Girl in a Dress January 3, 2012 at 1:51 pm

Ha! I was wondering why you weren’t up for helping with #10! Love that you are on board with this one too.

Suniverse January 3, 2012 at 1:12 pm

I love your list – and the reminder that setting goals is worthwhile, but setting unrealistic goals will just make you mental.

I will totally go see Addams Family with you.
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Naked Girl in a Dress January 3, 2012 at 1:51 pm

Your list was great too! Will you look like Morticia Addams when we go to the performance? That’s what I want to know!

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