Have you heard of micro-resolutions? Here are mine for 2020.


Like you perhaps, I’m floored that we’re not just in a new year but a new decade. In honor of simplicity for myself and for you, I thought I would share how I’m doing my New Year’s resolutions this year.

Over my winter holiday vacation with my family, I read this interesting article on Micro-Resolutions. The idea is that instead of trying to keep a few ambitious resolutions throughout the whole year (which research suggests about 80% of us will fail at), you can try committing to one smaller resolution per month.

This adaptation on resolutions caught my fancy and resonated with my outlook for this year. This year I want to be more experimental in terms of how I approach my work and my life. I want to spend less time crafting the “perfect plan,” and more time creating small experiments that will, over time, head me in the directions I want to go.

My plan is to try new micro-resolutions throughout the year and hopefully stick with the ones that seem to be making my life better while saying good-bye to the ones that aren’t serving me as well or take too much effort each day. In this way I hope to slowly, throughout the year, commit to layering a set of behaviors that work for who I am and where I am in my life cycle.

Although I reserve the right to change this chart, I thought I’d share with you my current micro-resolution experimental plan:

Since my goal (mostly kept) was to meditate daily last year. I’m considering that my foundational layer and starting to add to that with the following:

January: Series of daily yoga stretches. (I know I’m relatively inflexible so this little bit helps a lot)

February: Daily journaling. I used to do this and have gotten away from it but lately I’ve been more inspired to process my life and thoughts through writing.

March: Evening wind-down ritual. I’m picturing pairing a meditation and journaling with a lovely cup of tea at night. Curious if that will help me end my day and get into bed earlier too.

April: Walk at my desk. Embarrassing confession: I got a standing and walking desk to stay active throughout my day over a year ago. I do stand regularly, but I haven’t been as successful walking and working. So here’s to another month to try!

May: 14-Hour Daily Fast. I’ve been doing 12 hours fasts regularly for the past couple of years but very credible new research is showing that 14 hours is the magic new number for getting the best results from intermittent fasting. So I’ll give it a month and see how it works for me.

June: Drink more water. I just don’t drink enough water. I love my tea but I’m curious to get on the water bandwagon and see how I feel during the month. Hopefully not just busy running to the bathroom all the time!

July: Read every night. I adore reading. It’s my happy place. And I still often don’t leave time for it at the end of busy work days. This month will change that!

August: Turn off my computer at 9pm. I’m often trying to reply to late in the day emails, shopping on Amazon, doing volunteer work or just surfing the net in the evening. But I’d rather be reading (see July) or hanging with my family. I think it’s not enough to leave the desk, I need to shut off the computer.

September/October/November/December: ???

I don’t know if between all these goals I’ll have enough successful layers to just maintain through Q4 of 2020, or if I just can’t think now, what else I would love to add to my life.

Any ideas for me? I’m curious what you’re trying to do differently in 2020. Please comment below and share your goals, and/or any other ideas you have for me!

Posted in

Jo Ilfeld, PhD

An executive leadership coach, Jo helps C-suite leaders, executives, and high-potential managers develop the flexibility, skill, and frame of mind to meet the challenges of the next five, ten, twenty years…. and beyond. She works with individuals, teams and organizations on four core areas of leadership development. Check out Jo's bio page for more information.

Leave a Comment