How to Set 2021 Resolutions During a Time of Uncertainty

by | Jan 5, 2021

If you’re like most of us, you’ve been counting down to the start of a new year. There’s something about that single-digit change that fills us with so much hope and enthusiasm for a new beginning. And while 2021 does bring us the opportunity to begin anew, the slightly harsher reality is that we are still deep in the middle of the COVID-19 global pandemic.

Most people start the year by setting resolutions and goals to improve themselves, their family, and their career. But, with everything that has happened in 2020, you may feel unmotivated or even scared to plan your new year. While we may not know what the next few months, or even year, may bring our way, we will push through like we always have. This year looks different than this time last year, so the same goals we planned last year may not apply. It’s time to think outside of the box. Even with uncertainty, 2021 can still be a year a change, and here are some tips to help you plan some goals that are not only achievable but will leave you feeling successful.

Start With Reflection

Before you start to plan your 2021 resolutions, it’s a good idea to take a look back over the last year. You may be thinking it was full of stress or worry, but we promise there are positive things that have happened in your life. So how do you reflect? Write down these three questions and answer them:

1. What went well?

Don’t just write down one or two vague items, instead write down 5-10 specific events or successes you have had over the last year. It doesn’t matter what the topic is, just make sure these are things you would want to celebrate. After you have down the events, next write down why they are important to you.

2. What didn’t go so well?

We don’t want to hang on to the doom and gloom, but it is important to reflect on some things that didn’t go well, as we know 2020 has a lot. Write down a few mistakes or failures that bothered you. Next, write down what went wrong and how it made you feel for each item.

3. What did you learn?

Look at the two questions above, and you may seem some common elements. Did one good event cause a bad one or vice versa? Now is the time to write down five lessons you learned in 2020. Then write down what you are going to do with this knowledge to help you have a better 2021.

A Different Kind of Resolution

With so much uncertainty, it doesn’t feel as easy to plan for the future. Maybe last year your plan was to try for a promotion, or you planned more relaxation through travel, but COVID-19 got in the way. It may be easy to think you can just move those goals to this year, but we honestly don’t know what this year will bring us. So instead of planning resolutions that may not be a possibility, consider these types of goals instead:

Schedule Goals

Whether you are working at home, your children are staying up later, or your days just feel completely out of whack, a schedule goal may be exactly what you need to start feeling normalcy again. Or maybe you have worked way more than normal, and this year you’d like to take more time for yourself. It doesn’t matter what the situation is; getting a handle on how you spend your time will leave you feeling successful by the end of the year.

Process Goals

If one of the events that didn’t go so well could have been improved by a process change, now is the time to make that goal happen. Whether it is for your home or your career, processes are important to have productive days. Create an environment with less frustration by looking at the process, not just the situation. You might be surprised about the events or tasks you can improve.

Action Goals

As the word says, these are the goals that require you to take action. Whether you have a ton of projects you’ve started and never finished or you’d simply like to be more active, action goals get you moving. The key to planning these types of goals, though, is knowing that they can change and having a back-up plan. For example, if you stop feeling comfortable going to the gym, how will you keep your exercise goal on track? You can’t always plan for the unexpected, but having a basic plan for a problem will take the stress out of achieving your goals.

Dream Goals

These are the goals you get excited about, but also the goals that are the most uncertain. Maybe you set a goal of saving money to go on your dream European vacation, but travel may not be a possibility with the current state of the world. Don’t give up on those dreams; instead, leave them open-ended. Save the money for your trip, research places you want to go, just don’t set a specific date. You’ll still feel like you accomplished your goal; it’s just a matter of time when you can cash in on it.

Goals and resolutions come in all different shapes and sizes. The key is to set goals that are actually achievable. If you have a wild or big dream goal that you surely can’t achieve in a year, don’t give up on the goal, instead create a path to get you there. Your small steps to your dream goal may be the resolution goals you have been seeking.

Feeling Short on Time?

Even though 2020 has meant more time at home, that doesn’t mean your schedule isn’t packed. Finding time to work on your goals may seem more stressful than creating them, but you don’t have to do it all alone. We all have low-priority tasks that don’t need our full attention, and it’s time to start delegating. A LifeSquire personal assistant can help take the stress out of your day by handling tasks such as grocery shopping, laundry, errand running, vet visits, vehicle maintenance appointments, and more. To learn more about LifeSquire personal assistant service, click here.

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