Well, it’s December, and while I don’t get too emotional about the changing of years, I do like to use this month to get my sh*t together after 11 months of life as a disorganized person.
I don’t do routines, I commit to more than I have time for, and I chase my wonton whims more often than I ought. I kinda like living that way, and don’t intend to change, so each December, I get refocused, and recall my life from the many tangents it’s wandered down during the year.
Wanna do it with me? Here are five ways to get back on track this December:
- Decide what you can still accomplish this year.
Some of what you can still do might include big goals (I’m going to properly open a three-storey community hub downtown) and some might be smaller things (I’m also going to organize my bookshelf). Make a reasonable list of things that you are willing to absolutely prioritize above all else and get done before the stroke of 2016. Then mark the time in your calendar and do them.
- Cut loose anything you started, but don’t need to finish.
If you’re like me, you’re interested in just about everything. If you’re very much like me, you love starting things far more than you love finishing them. Evaluate the list of things you stuck a toe in this year, and make your “New Year’s Anti-Resolution List” of things that you’re not going to keep doing. Then give yourself permission to let them go, and use December to responsibly wrap up anything that requires it.
- Pick your 2016 priorities.
Now that you’ve cleared space in your to-do list, December is a great time to turn ideas you’ve been toying with into next year’s priorities. For me, I’ll just keep daydreaming about most of my idea journal, but there are a few items whose time has come for earnest execution.
Pick yours, too, and make a real work plan for them, with estimated timelines and rough budgets and everything.
- Flip through your calendar.
Not only is it sometimes a bit of fun to look back on the year’s appointments, but it can remind you of the people you meant to follow up with and the events you attended that you want to put in next year’s calendar.Pro tip: prepare yourself for the sobering realization that time has moved very quickly.
- Unsubscribe from junk email.
As of right now, a handy little service provided by unroll.me tells me that I have close to 1,000 subscriptions hitting my inbox. I don’t look at most of them, but they add to my mental cobwebs nonetheless. So I’ve designated an Unsubscribing Day, which would be a bit mindless and tedious, except it’s the perfect time of year to queue up some Christmas movies and spike some eggnog to make the day bearable.
With these five things accomplished, I should be ready to enter 2016 on track, and with lots of space for wandering down new tangents.
I hope you will, too!
Originally published December 3, 2015 in Our London.