Research shows that nearly half of New Year’s resolutions fizzle before February. Instead of setting overly ambitious New Year’s resolutions that make you feel bad when you can’t accomplish them, we want to help you revolutionize your approach to resolutions with Microsteps, Thrive’s science-backed, too-small-to-fail mini behavior changes that you can integrate into your life right away, making it easier to meaningfully form new habits.

We challenged Thrive staffers to test a Microstep for 32 days and write about their progress. The result? Some very honest and encouraging Microstep Diaries, like this one.

Thrive staffer: Clarice Metzger, Creative Strategist

Microstep: Set an alarm for 30 minutes before your bedtime.

Why I chose it

I would like to start establishing a bedtime routine and use the 30 minutes to unwind before bed. Even if my routine is just making sure that I’m not doing work right until I close my eyes and fall asleep.

Not always ready to wind down

I was consistent in my Microstep in that the alarm went off every night, but I usually did not end up going to sleep within those 30 minutes. The challenges I faced were that I was in the middle of something and did not finish up in those 30 minutes.

Feeling the gains

When I did actually do a 30 minute wind-down routine — shower, drink tea, and do a face mask — I felt accomplished and relaxed, so that as soon as I laid in bed, I fell asleep. When I didn’t, I found myself in bed scrolling through Instagram, unable to fall asleep right away.

Key takeaways

I wouldn’t call this Microstep a habit yet, but it’s something I’d like to continue to work on in order to make it a habit. My main learning is that I need to get home earlier in order to have time to unwind. If I could have done one thing differently, it would be to get home earlier so that I can make dinner and prepare myself for the next day, so that I don’t feel as though I have so much left to do before winding down. I’m going to try that strategy moving forward, so I can set the alarm and actually stick to it!

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More Microstep Month Diaries:

I Made a Small Change in My Pre-Bedtime Ritual for 32 Days and the Results Were Amazing

I Tried A Quick Burst of Exercise Most Mornings for 32 Days and Here’s What Happened

I Journaled Every Night for 32 Days, and Turned It Into a Sweet Gift for My Partner

Arianna Huffington: Give Your New Year’s Resolutions a Boost by Joining Us For Microstep Month