Kendra Smoot

I’ve always had mixed feelings about New Year’s Resolutions. They’re fun to make, but two months in, I’m still biting my nails, dressing like a 10-year-old boy, and eating Trader Joe’s chocolate-covered almonds before bed. But! The other day, I stumbled upon illustrator Julia Rothman’s resolutions, and they changed my mind…

New Year's Resolutions by Julia Rothman

Instead of hard-and-fast rules, Julia made a list of things she’d like to do “more” and things she’d like to do “less.” How great is that? “It’s a more relaxed approach than ‘yes’ or ‘no,'” she told me on the phone this morning. “It’s just like, be a little better about it.” I also love how it encourages you to think about what really matters to you in your life.

Julia has done these lists for three years. “In 2017, I hung the list above my computer, but I had a party and got embarrassed and took it down,” she says. “But then I decided not to be embarrassed about it and I posted it on Instagram. This year, I was like, I don’t care, whatever.”

What would you write on your list? I’d LOVE to hear.

Mine would be:

One-on-one time with the boys
Evening walks
Reading in bed
Salads with avocado, parmesan and pine nuts
Flourless chocolate cake
Listening/reading about other people’s experiences
Working vocab words into everyday conversation

White wine
Futzing on my phone
Grouching/complaining about dumb things
Worrying so much at bedtime

And, remember, even your resolutions don’t need to be perfect. “Expectation is on my list twice,” says Julia, with a laugh. “But no one has noticed.”

P.S. Simple pleasures, and the Grand Canyon trick.

(Top photo by Kendra Smoot.)