Quarantine Activity: Check In With Your New Year’s Resolutions


South LondonI woke up in a panic the other morning; I couldn’t remember what day it was. At various points throughout the day, I had to consciously remind myself that it was Monday, not Tuesday. Making matters worse, the clock in our living room died last weekend. So every time I tried to check the time, a blank wall stared back at me.

Because of the Corona Virus, it’s a weird time to attempt to have any semblance of a routine right now. Monday bleeds into Wednesday. You fail to change your clothes for days on end because…why bother? It takes you several weeks to grasp that your feet are actually sticking to the kitchen floor because you’ve forgotten the last time it was cleaned.

So I decided that one way to mark time would be to circle back to the ten resolutions I set in early January to see if I’m making any progress. After all, if you can’t tackle your goals when you’re under quarantine, when can you?

We all know that the success rate for sticking to New Year’s Resolutions is abysmally low. But on the principle that you’re more likely to realize any goal if you say it out loud, I thought I’d use this blog post as my own, personal accountability yardstick to see how I’m getting on in 2020.

Here’s what I learned:

a. Affirmations.  Of all the resolutions I set for myself back in January, the one I’ve committed to the most – because I’ve incorporated into my morning ritual – are my affirmations. I have them sitting right next to my computer so that I recite them aloud before I start work. They are mostly keyed to believing in myself as a salesperson (my least favourite part of running my own business). And guess what? The first quarter of this year was my highest earning one since I started my company two years ago. Those are a keeper.

b. Walking. I vowed in January to walk more without purpose. (I believe the technical term for that is “wandering.”) Needless to say, living under lockdown here in London has made walking a necessity. While I know North London fairly well, I moved to South London five years ago and still lack familiarity with much outside my own neighbourhood. So I’m using these walks to explore this part of the city. Each time I go out, I make sure I stroll along at least one street I’ve never been on before. Then I take a photo of that street’s name. Fun!

c. I’m doing a 24/6 workweek. With one exception, I have consistently “honored the Sabbath” for the past three months. I know that’s nothing to jump up and down about, but I’m really pleased with the direction of travel. And when I work on Sundays, I mainly use that time to catch up on emails and plan blog posts, which I don’t think of as “work-work.” Plus, because most of my work right now entails adapting my communication consultancy to a virtual space, working hard right feels good right now. That said, I do need to start using some of the project management tools I teach to ensure that I’m carving out time for the “important but not urgent” category of work.

d. I’m *still* not writing enough. I need to own this. I do write every morning. And it always makes me feel happier, more relaxed and more authentic. But I’m not writing enough outside of blogging. And this is a disappointment. I need to figure out how to write more each day and still accomplish everything else I need to get done. Sorting that out is my priority for June. (See below)

e. I’m not a bath person. While I’ve occasionally contemplated taking a bath over the past few months, I’ve never managed to actually make it happen. So I’m striking that one off the list. Ah, the liberation! Calgon – do NOT – take me away!

Most of us write down our resolutions on January 1st and then fail to revisit them for another 365 days. My new vow is to do a quarterly check-in with myself. Who’s in?

Share how your 2020 goals are shaping up in the comments section.

Image: The Shard and South London by Phyl Gifford via Flickr