A challenge to beat all challenges?

“Less is more”

A few years back, my New Year’s resolution was a full year of buying nothing new.

I made it until August …

Then my willpower began to erode as I travelled around Europe for a couple of months and my birthday drew close.  I rationalised I wasn’t ‘really’ buying that new handbag in Greece because my parents had given me the money specifically to buy something for my birthday. (Rationalising has always been a ‘strength’ of mine!)

And then I bought myself another wee gift, and another … Could I really leave Italy without a leather jacket?!

You could say I ‘failed’, but I bought about five new things for myself that year — not a patch on what I would normally have bought. And I completely transformed the way I related to shopping, forever. To me, that’s unqualified success.

So this year I’m excited to be taking on another ‘nothing new’ challenge. But this year, it’s not so much about shopping, but ‘doing’.

I’m a magpie for ‘shiny new things’ in the shape of new challenges, ventures, adventures, hobbies and pursuits – always ready to jump into the new before I’ve mastered, or even completed the old (or not so old).

Last year was a massive year for new things. I did my first multi-day multi-sport event. I quit my job. I started My Kinder Life. I created and launched The Good Registry.

So this year, I’m doing nothing new.  Instead I’m focussing on what I’ve already started.

I don’t get to buy that new surf-ski and learn how to use it. I don’t get to do my first Ironman. I don’t get to travel to places I haven’t been before. No classes in Te Reo. Nothing new. Nada.

Instead I’m focussing on what I’ve already started: Put my heart and soul into My Kinder Life and The Good Registry, keep running, cycling and kayaking, keep up my yoga and meditation, keep reading, writing, and painting with watercolours, keep exploring Wellington and NZ, and keep in touch with my family and friends.

That’s it for New Year’s Resolutions. Nothing new. The simplest resolution I could ever make.

But somehow I don’t think it will be that simple …

Yours in simplicity,




  • The inspiration for my year of doing nothing new in part came from David Cain’s idea of a ‘Depth Year’.  “The guiding philosophy is “Go deeper, not wider.” Drill down for value and enrichment instead of fanning out….”
  • Leo Babauta of Zen Habits is also doing a Depth Year this year. He is taking a structured approach, creating ‘constraints’ to ensure he focusses on the things he’s already started, and even creating a dashboard to track progress.
  • There’s no formal structure or dashboard for my year of nothing new, but I’ll let you know how I’m going through my blogs :).

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  1. You are amazing Christine Langdon. All the very best for this year and for all the new stuff you are not going to do and the new things you are not going to buy! You are certainly sowing some thought seeds…

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