Way back in Season Two of “Grey’s Anatomy”, a voiceover with Dr. Meredith Grey shared, “Fresh starts. Thanks to the calendar, they happen every year. Just set your watch to January. Our reward for surviving the holiday season is a new year bringing on the great tradition of New Year’s Resolutions. Put your past behind you and start over. It’s hard to resist the chance of a new beginning, a chance to put the problems of last year to bed.”

Personally, I have always loved New Year’s Resolutions and deciding what I could do to improve my life in the coming year.  From choosing a word of the year, deciding on a word to act as a mantra or guiding principle for the new year, to setting fitness or wellness goals, there are so many ways to use the new calendar to launch your fresh start into the new year. 

How to Choose a Word of the Year

  • Reflect.  Reflect on the past year, considering what you could use more (or less) of in your life.
  • Visualize.  What do you want to focus on in 2021?  How do you want your life and year to feel?
  • Create a list.  What words come to mind?
  • Review your list.  Circle your favorite three words.  Consider the impact each of these would have on your year.
  • Ask yourself if you are committed to this word.  If you’re committed, you’ll implement the changes and effort needed.  If you’re interested in the idea, then chances are you aren’t fully committed to actually make the changes.

One year, starting in January, I read The Happiness Project – a blockbuster bestseller by Gretchen Rubin.  Plainly said, this book changed my life.  There is a reason it spent more than two years on the New York Times bestseller list, launched a podcast, and several other books on habit change and happiness by Rubin.  After what, for many, felt like the most difficult year yet, why not dedicate 2021 to a happiness project of your own?

Are you looking for guidance on what you would like to accomplish in 2021?  Here are 33 Goals for 2021 and How to Set Them in a Smart Way.  This article suggests you start by taking a look at your life, breaking down different areas where you should set goals.  Perhaps looking at it that way could help you decide where you should focus your attention.

Maybe this year you focus on personal goals, and consider 50 Examples of Personal Goals to Set in 2021 with goals that are more of a concept than a tangible item you can cross of a list.  From putting in extra effort to growing your personality, this list may spark some interest and guide you to a plan for the new year. 

No matter what you decide, I’m wishing you a calm January as we unwind from the holiday season. 

In the words of Gretchen Rubin, “onward and upward!”  Here’s to a better and happier 2021.