Ah the New Year. The frenzy of the holidays is over. The Christmas tree is in the burn pile or next to the curb. The kids are back in school. And you? You deftly returned to the routine and are probably trying to shed off those extra holiday pounds. Mom’s fudge. The cookie decorating party. The Yorkshire pudding. Oh those lovely, seductive carbs. But that is just one of your New Year’s resolutions. What about the rest? Why not make this your Year of Yes.


No matter your political persuasion, 2017 was a tumultuous year. People on both sides of the aisle voiced their opinions loudly and often. The national news was filled with salacious stories and the international scene featured nuclear saber rattling. There’s nothing magic about the dawn of 2018 that will miraculously change this narrative. So instead, let’s focus on that which we CAN change. Let’s make this our personal Year of Yes.


As parents, we are immersed in nurturing our children and spouses—seeing to it that everyone is fed, clothed, educated, and loved. And like so many women, you likely have the standard resolutions to get in shape, lose five pounds, stop saying the f-word (I try and fail at this annually), be more patient, maybe read more. They’re all worthy goals, but let’s face it, they’re the same old, same old.

We challenge you to add two more resolutions to your list:
1) Do something for you that’s outside of your wheelhouse;
2) Do something for others that’s outside of your norm.


Do something for you that’s outside of your wheelhouse.


Jen, Lisa, and Jen at our PlanHero planning retreat.


Think big or think small, but make it something you’ve always contemplated doing.


  • Run a half-marathon.
  • Try archery.
  • Climb a mountain.
  • Learn how to use Photoshop.
  • Take an oil painting class.
  • Learn French.
  • Take a U.S. history class online.
  • Write a book.


That’s me, Julie, on the left in the blue Trek Travel jersey climbing the Col de Joux Plane in the L’etape du Tour in France. Note the dudes walking on the right 🙂


Do something for others that’s outside of your norm.


Again, big or small, it doesn’t matter…just say YES.


  • Volunteer to read to at-risk pre-schoolers.
  • Initiate your own fundraiser for a cause you care about.
  • Spend time at an elder care center playing cards with the folks.
  • Hold babies at homeless shelters.
  • Help new immigrants learn English or pass their GED in the evenings.
  • Mentor a youth.
  • Start planning now for the next holiday season: plan your own food drive for Thanksgiving 2018 or Christmas 2018.


By stepping outside your own comfort zone, you set an example for your children. You illustrate that just as they must face challenges like algebra, you too, can face things that you fear, but still want to try or conquer. You show by example that helping your fellow man and woman is incumbent upon all of us as human beings.


For the last two years, my favorite resolution has been to do one small random act of kindness for someone each day. It’s as small as returning an elderly woman’s grocery cart so she can just get in her car…despite my being in a rush. I’ll continue this resolution this year, because it has hands down brought me the most joy. And I truly believe that it restores people’s faith in the kindness of one another. Last year, I also stepped way out my comfort zone to launch a start-up called PlanHero, with the mission to make it easier for people to say YES. It’s thrilling, it’s scary, and I can’t wait to see where we go in 2018. With any luck, it will serve as inspiration to my sons that even at middle-age, you can do anything!


Take the PlanHero Year of Yes Challenge


We challenge you to decide on your two outside resolutions and post them to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or LinkedIn with a link to this post and encourage others to do the same. Together, we can make ourselves better and the world a better place for all.


Please tag us and use the hashtag #MCYearOfYesChallenge


For 2018, my…


Do something for me outside my wheelhouse is:


1. I’m going to take a fencing lesson (yes, it’s possible that Game of Thrones influenced this…).


Do something for others that’s outside my norm is:


2. I’m going to organize an adopt-a-family program for next year’s holiday season.



Happy New Year!  #MCYearOfYesChallenge