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Every January, we begin our New Year’s resolutions with the best of intentions.
Forming good habits is difficult, and there’s always room to improve—it’s the reason we make these resolutions in the first place. To give yourself the edge this year, be sure to make creative use of great tools.
And an often-overlooked tool is an inspirational calendar.
How a calendar can help motivate you
If you want to make your resolution stick, make it a habit. The best way to make it a habit is to do it regularly. Easier said than done? Absolutely. But an inspirational calendar can give you an edge here.
Over at Lifehacker, Brad Isaac recounts the time he met Jerry Seinfeld backstage at a comedy club. He asked the comedian if he had any tips for an up-and-comer, and Seinfeld told him the only way to be a better comic is to write better jokes, and the only way to do that is to write every day.
Seinfeld’s solution was to mark any day he wrote a joke on his calendar with a big red X. After a few days, he’d have an eye-pleasing chain of Xs. The longer the chain, the more accomplished he felt, the more motivated he became. Now, he had to maintain the chain to reinvigorate his motivation.
Seinfeld’s “don’t break the chain” rule is an excellent method for using a calendar to spur you toward your resolution.
“[This] works because it isn’t the one-shot pushes that get us where we want to go, it is the consistent daily action that builds extraordinary outcomes,” Isaac explains.
We like Seinfeld’s rule because it is easy to revise to meet your unique goal. Say your resolution is to do more nature hiking. You may only be able to get away during the weekends, so your chain will be a vertical line of Saturdays, not horizontal across the week.
Perhaps you want to exercise more? Then swap out those Xs for bold numbers declaring the minutes you work out each day. Adding them up at the end shows you your overall accomplishment, even if you missed a day or two.
Whatever your specific resolution, the calendar offers a quick visual reminder of the progress you’ve already made.
Images can drive your New Year’s resolution
Inspiring pictures can propel you to break through your walls. The motivational poster industry has known this for years. We like the sight of mountain climbers or breakers crashing against an oceanside cliff as much as the next person, but to truly motivate, we find there’s no substitute for a photo from our collection.
Designing a New Year’s resolution calendar with an app like Motif allows you to personalize each month’s photo. You can then choose the images you know will keep you motivated.Say your resolution is to save money to travel. You can create a calendar with pictures you took during past vacations. Photos featuring loved ones’ smiling faces, local celebrations, and beautiful landscapes are a yearlong reminder of the fun you’ve had and value you place in those once-in-a-lifetime experiences.
Or maybe you want to renovate your home this year. You can include images of designs that influence you, photos from past projects, or drawn plans to offer a visualization of success. By creating a calendar that is truly your own, you direct how you’ll view the year month after month.
Motivational messages throughout the year
A picture may be worth a thousand words, but the right words are worth all the motivation in the world. Spare no expense and add some motivational messages to go with your personalized images.
What messages do and don’t inspire will depend greatly on you. You may find quotes from historical figures stimulating or maybe it’s a loving thought from a family member. A mixture of both?
Figure out what types of messages incentivize you and include those on your calendar. Be sure to spread them throughout the year but add some extras during the early months, when you’ll need that motivational boost to keep going.
Create an inspirational calendar with Motif
It’s not too late to create your New Year’s inspirational calendar, and Motif is here to help. Motif integrates with Apple Photos to give you seamless access to your photos. As of its newest update, you can even add personalized text to any day. These features ensure you’ll have all the motivation you need see you through the entire year.
Want to be really inspired? Add text and a favorite photo to any day.
Making a New Year’s resolution stick isn’t easy. But with the proper mindset and tools, you can increase your chances of success exponentially. An inspirational calendar that speaks to you and your resolution is a wonderful tool to help you maintain that growth mindset.