The new year is approaching, which means we are drawing closer to resolution time!
I’m a confirmed skeptic of new year’s resolutions. (If something is important, why wait? And if I can’t actually manage a goal in the course of my day to day life, why set myself up for failure and then punish myself over it?)
However, I actually do think there is one resolution that we all should make…
This is an idea that I picked up from one of my closest friends.
Several years back, we were together when she had just gotten some wonderful news. She said ‘wait a minute, I have to add that to my accomplishments list!’
I said, ‘what is an accomplishments list!?’
As it turns out, she had this set up in the Notes app on her iPhone, so whenever something happened that felt like a win, she would put it on the list.
I thought this was such a lovely idea.
It took me a while to actually implement this in my own life, but after trying it myself, I am a firm believer:
Everyone should have an annual accomplishments list.
Personally, I keep mine on Notion (with my to do list and other key info). It’s not a long list, it easily fits on a single page, but it’s incredible to see the things I’m proud of: moments I coped with adversity, or got recognised for my work, hit a life milestone, or found a moment of personal growth.
I’ve been keeping these lists since 2020, and it’s wonderful to see what can happen in a year – especially if you often reach the end of your days and think ‘what did I even accomplish today?’ (Parenting a small child, there are plenty of days when this happens – but if you look at what tiny steps of progress amount to over the course of a year, it can be pretty staggering.)
The things that go on an accomplishment list are really determined by your own values and areas of growth. They don’t necessarily have to be events that would receive traditional recognition or that you would put on your CV. I mean, I was thrilled when I got shortlisted for a poet’s collective to add that onto my list. But I also included some of the opportunities I went for and didn’t get, because it felt like a win that I had put myself out there.
Some of the most important things also have to do with my personal life. Things like finding a creative way to help Rose overcome her fear of forest school, which felt like a huge parenting win. And starting my new anti-cancer therapeutic regime, which was really tough on my body and took a huge amount of energy to get through. Also being brave enough to have a particularly hard conversation with a friend that I probably would have avoided a few years ago.
If it’s something that’s meaningful to you, that’s enough.
It’s wonderful to see big milestones and little moments side by side.
Remember: You are enough.
So often when making resolutions, we focus on the ways that we’re not enough. We think about all the things we think we should be doing. And then we judge ourselves for the ways we fall short of these unreasonable expectations.
But I think the most valuable and dare I say revolutionary thing we can do is to make a resolution to recognise our progress.
Imagine – how you would feel being able to look back at that a year from now?
It’s the perfect time to find out.