Well before New Year’s was on my mind, before the bright lights and champagne guzzling of the holidays were upon us, I accidentally stumbled on a new approach to New Year’s resolutions. I’ve never been a big fan of resolutions—they often seem a little arbitrary, forced or too hard to stick to. They are often about making yourself better, but even that is somewhat ill-defined—as if losing weight or flossing more often are the secrets to happiness. Instead, I wanted to go into 2015 with a concrete plan for how to make it a good year. An authentic year. A year of being more intentional and conscious than I was in 2014.
It was actually my mother who found a new approach to resolutions, or as we’re calling them this year, our "reboot." She was attending a program called Neighborhood University, designed by NeighborWorks, for anyone involved in a neighborhood association or council. The participants did an exercise together that helped them realize the real goals behind the programming they organized. All too often they were getting results, but not the ones they intended. The exercise was to pair up to work backward from their goals to see what kinds of events or activities they really needed.