talking about a resolution: ten for twelve

Love ‘em, or hate ‘em, I believe—if done well—making goals for the new year can do a person good. Personally, I love having the calendar turn and embracing all that it represents: a fresh start, blank slate, new beginning. You know all the clichés? I love them.

For many years I’ve been naming the year ahead. I spend time thinking and praying about it and then I name it. This helps to give me focus for the year, and reminds me when things are difficult, that there is purpose and a bigger picture.

My word last year was peace. It was the Year of Peace – very interesting considering all that we went through during my pregnancy with Judah.

In years past I’ve had other words like “joy” or “faith”… So imagine how awesome it is to have landed on this year and feel that my new year word should be “discipline”?!

The Year of Discipline. Sounds thrilling, doesn’t it?

But really, I think it will be.

The reason I want to find more discipline in my life is actually because I’m tired of feeling overwhelmed and I want to simplify. And I think that to simplify, I need to take charge of certain areas and be more proactive instead of just reactive.

This will be hard. But I know I can do it.

And I know that in doing so my more disciplined life will lead to a more simplified life.


So, here are my ten for 2012:

Planning. Specifically, menu planning. I want to have two, two-week menu plans that I can rotate for a while. Even if we swap meals around during the week, the food is bought and I won’t find myself stuck. (By the way, if I were rich I’d hire a cook. Making daily meals is soooo not something I enjoy. Just wanted to put this one in context, because it’s kind-of a big deal for me.)

Reading. Curious George doesn’t count. And neither do parenting books or blogs (which I almost always manage to find time for). I love reading and used to read all the time, but it’s one thing that I’ve seriously let fall by the wayside since having kids. I’m not going to put a number on it, but I do want to read (or finish reading) several books that I already have, and a few that are on my “wish list” of books to read. (Namely novels, biographies, and spiritual development books.) I’ve already started reading a little each night before bed and I think this will be the way to make it happen more consistently.

Writing. Already this year I’ve started writing for (strictly) five minutes a day on my new blog. This is good for me – it’s keeping my creative juices flowing. It’s also taking a lot of self-control to stop at five minutes! (Yup, more discipline.)

Blogging. I’m still working out my specific blogging goals for 2012 but in general I’ll just say that I want to spend more time writing (which is contingent upon being more disciplined in other areas!). I also want to spend a little more time improving things about the look and feel and functionality of the Memos. And finally, I want to cull my RSS reader and focus more on supporting other bloggers that I genuinely love.

Romancing. This Christmas I gave my husband an envelope of “12 months of date nites” (he gets to choose which one to use which month) and I really want to be more disciplined about going out as a couple. This year we found that far too often we let 3-4 months slip between dates. Not good.

Moving. I want to go for walks at least twice a week. I know it doesn’t sound like much, but when you’re dealing with the sort of heat and humidity we have here, it’s hard to be motivated to go outside unless it’s for swimming or sanity trips to the park because the toddler will otherwise implode!! I’ve got some mommy friends I’m hoping will join me so we can have stroller races together. (Or just nice, leisurely walks. Whatever.)

Sleeping. The goal here is to not see the clock move past 10:30pm on most nights (or midnight every now and then – but only for good reason) unless I’m up with one of my children. And perhaps I can even move this forward to 10:00pm eventually… but for now, baby steps for this night owl. *breathe* I can do it.

Waking. I’d like to quit using my kids as an alarm clock. This means dragging myself out of bed before them so that I can have some time to order my day alone and kick it off to a good start – even if it’s just thirty minutes. I think this one in particular will help me to feel more proactive instead of reactive!!

Praying. I really desire to pray more this year. I already pray a lot in the day-to-day mix of things, but I’d like to try and have more uninterrupted (deliberate) prayer time. (I need to nail my “waking” goal to accomplish this.)

Playing. And finally, I want to play more – with my boys, with my husband, with my friends, and even on my own. As for the boys, I play a lot with them as it is, but I’m often watching the clock, thinking about The List, or even sometimes multi-tasking (stack a few blocks, fold a few towels, stack a few more blocks…). I want to focus more on the playing while I’m playing.

Dear friends, many bloggers are publishing “12 for 12” (resolutions/goals) for this year… but I’m limiting mine to ten. I’ve tried to form them in a way that I think is reasonable and not too lofty for me to actually achieve… We shall see. And how about you? Do you have any goals for the new year? Feel free to link-up a post in the comments if you’ve published them on your own blog – I’d love to read and be inspired!

About Author

Adriel Booker is an author, speaker, and advocate based in Sydney, Australia who believes storytelling, beauty, and the grace of God will change the world. Adriel has become a trusted voice in areas of motherhood and parenting, Christian spirituality, and global women's issues. She's also known for her work with the Love A Mama Collective—serving under-resourced women in developing nations through safe birth initiatives—as well as her years spent as a Bible teacher and leadership coach. Her latest book is Grace Like Scarlett: Grieving with Hope after Miscarriage and Loss and she's made the companion grief journal available for free. Find Adriel across all social media platforms at @adrielbooker or sign up for LoveNotes, Adriel's 'secret posts' that aren't published anywhere else online. ✌️


  • Jessica
    6 January 2012 at 4:17 am

    I love all of your goals and share many of the same ones. I think with two little ones, it’s become even more imperative to get organized and plan, as much as I reasonably can.

    On the blogging front, I, too, have similar goals. This weekend, I dramatically reduced the size of the blogs I was following in google reader. I now, like you, want to build deeper relationships with the blogs, like your blog ;), that I truly like and who are owned by people, like you :), that I genuinely care about or want to get to know better. I also cleaned up my twitter follower list. I feel so much better now.

    p.s. I meant to comment on the post on your other blog yesterday, but insanity happened in my house so I forgot. I plan to today, however. 🙂

    Hope you are having a good day!

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      6 January 2012 at 2:42 pm

      Yeah, I think that a lot of moms have similar goals actually. The more I read 2012 posts… the more I realize how much we all desire similar things!

      I’ve had “culling my RSS” on my LIST for months now, and it’s really irritating. I just need to sit down, take an hour and DO IT. Hadn’t thought of doing that with my twitter, but maybe I should. Hmmmm….

  • megan @ boho mama
    6 January 2012 at 4:55 am

    Love your 10! Especially the P’s…planning, praying, and playing.

  • Ashley
    6 January 2012 at 4:58 am

    These are fantastic, Adriel! If you find a good way to organize a two-week menu plan, please let me know! I’ve been trying to cement something down like that for awhile and *obviously* never have! I too would hire a chef! haha. Love this list, :).

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      6 January 2012 at 2:43 pm

      Oh, well I probably won’t do anything fancy Ashley – just a list of 14 meals (x3), and the ingredients I need for them… My goal is to have this started by the end of this month…!

  • Katherine
    6 January 2012 at 4:58 am

    love the sleeping goal. you won’t regret it! i was super-disciplined with my sleep for a month and was shocked by how much it impacted my days. less snacking and reaching for sugar-fixes to boost my energy, and getting a head start on my kids has been a total game-changer. that was one practice that i tried for a month and then kept around.
    love these! i don’t have any resolutions to inspire you with, but want to check back and see what others write.

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      6 January 2012 at 2:44 pm

      thanks for the encouragement! i’m working on the “bed earlier” this month, so that by next month i can feel like i can start working on the getting up earlier. it’s too much for me to do all at once… but i’ll get there. i think. no, i’ll get there! 🙂

  • Stephanie
    6 January 2012 at 4:58 am

    Such great goals and really similar to some I have been working on the past 4-5 months. The going to bed earlier helps! I have more energy and patience for my children and my husband during the day, rarely do I have to nap in the afternoon to make it through the day anymore 🙂

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      6 January 2012 at 2:47 pm

      that’s so encouraging! i have been napping in the afternoon many days (have needed to with a newborn) but now that judah’s getting a bit bigger and we’re getting in more of a rhythm, i really want to reclaim my nap times (the one time a day where the boys overlap) as time for other stuff – whether it’s “to do’s” or just “me time”! (and maybe just nap every once in a while, instead of vise-versa.) thanks for the encouragement! 🙂

  • amanda
    6 January 2012 at 5:06 am

    love your “12 months of date nights” idea– i may have to borrow this for a late christmas present to my husband!

    your goal list is strangely similar to mine…and i’ve been praying/thinking through the word “simplify”– my first attempt at having a word for the year. i never thought about how it relates so closely to discipline, so thanks for making that connection for me!

    best wishes as you make these goals a reality in your life! i know you will do great and enjoy the wonderful benefits of a more disciplined life!

  • Pam
    6 January 2012 at 6:16 am

    Hmmm…thought I had a response typed but it’s not showing up. I have a general list of 2012 goals on my blog, detailed financial goals going up tomorrow (Friday–in the US) and Saturday will be another list to link up to the “insane goals” at Simply Rebekah.

  • Nessa
    6 January 2012 at 8:13 am

    Love this list… and funny how we are all striving for such similar things. I need your date night… it has been a few months since we have gone anywhere alone. Shame shame.

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      6 January 2012 at 2:50 pm

      i know, right? seems like many moms struggle (and want to improve) in many of the same areas. at least we know we can encourage each other!! and yes, get some dates happening – they are so fun! 🙂

  • Micheline
    6 January 2012 at 9:37 am

    Awesome resolutions and I can relate to many of them. We’re both new moms to two, so I guess that makes sense. I miss reading, I miss romancing, I miss moving, I miss sleeping . . . you get the gist. I also love your idea about waking up earlier to start your day proactively.

    Happy 2012!

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      6 January 2012 at 2:50 pm

      happy 2012 to you too! i hope we can all finish this year in a “better” place than where we started! xx

  • Laura
    6 January 2012 at 12:27 pm

    Love these! I need to really sit down and organize myself and think about this year! Also you DO have to cook the pasta first for that recipe! Wasn’t sure if you’d see I answered and I didn’t want you to have a casserole dish full of dry pasta one night 🙂

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      6 January 2012 at 2:52 pm

      oh, thanks so much laura! i thought you might need to… but i suppose wishful thinking got the best of me. (i knew it was too good to be true. ha!) still sounds really easy though (and yummy). i’m totally gonna try it!

  • Branson
    6 January 2012 at 2:30 pm

    What an awesome collection of goals! I am considering stealing your word for the year 😉 I look forward to being inspired by you, and learning good tips as you work on these 🙂

  • laura @ hollywood housewife
    7 January 2012 at 4:21 am

    I love that your word for the year is “discipline” because this is something I crave in my life, too. Even when I get a little better at it, I find that I need MORE MORE MORE of it.

    There’s something to be said for feeling freedom in your life, and for me discipline gives me more emotional freedom.

  • Nina
    7 January 2012 at 6:07 am

    Love listing it this way – with active verbs. Esp that one of “romancing” – love the action in that – so much better than ” work on strengthening marriage, etc.”
    thank you!

  • Becca
    7 January 2012 at 8:05 am

    Saw your link on hollywood housewife…Great list! We have a lot of similar goals (maybe having little kids does that!), although yours were much more well-written than mine!

    • Adriel @ The Mommyhood Memos
      7 January 2012 at 9:55 pm

      yes, i do think a lot of mothers with young kids have similar goals! we’re definitely not alone as we seek to improve our lives and our families, that’s for sure! 🙂

  • 52:1 | drool « The Mommyhood Memos
    7 January 2012 at 9:49 pm

    […] talking about a resolution: ten for twelve » 52:1 | drool By Adriel on January 7, 2012 | 10 comments // 52 fotos | week […]

  • Teva
    9 January 2012 at 11:44 pm

    I was inspired and so I wrote one of my own.

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