One month into the new year might be time to revisit those new year’s resolutions. How are they working for you?

If, like me, you’re not thrilled with your performance so far, it could be you’re pushing yourself too hard, trying to do too much at once.

I recently watched an interesting talk on will power by Roy Baumeister, a psychology professor at the University of Florida in Tallahassee.

If you have committed to more than one resolution, he recommends you work on them in sequence–not all at the same time.

Why is that?

Given that a resolution usually involves changing yourself in some way, it will take self control and draw upon your willpower. If you try to change your life in four different ways at once, each time you put energy into doing one thing, you’ll be depleting the energy you need to do the others. The best thing to do, says Baumeister, “is to pick one, succeed at it, then move onto the next.”

You can think of willpower as a muscle, he says. It’s something that gets tired when you exert it. Yet regular exercise will strengthen the muscle.

While you have one supply of willpower, you may allocate it differently. Some may get used up at work or relationships or trying to make healthier choices. When you use will power for one thing, less will be available for other things.

Your willpower gets depleted every time you make a decision, take initiative, or exert self control. This may be worth considering as you plan your day.

If you’re an entrepreneur, a creative, or an innovator whose work involves not defaulting to inertia, but plowing ahead into uncharted territory, give yourself a break. Don’t feel like you have to slog ahead and do everything, even when you’re feeling depleted.

Don’t do what one editor I worked with did each day. He would fill one yellow legal pad page with his to-do list of 20 or more bulleted items. I mocked him at the time. And I’m not convinced he ever finished checking everything off his list. But back in the day, my to-do list usually fit on a 2 x 2 inch Post-It note. Maybe three things were my goals for the day. And I always got them done.

Nowadays, yellow sticky notes with just one item listed languish for weeks on the wall. They silently mock me. It seems that after doing time at a day job making zillions of micro decisions, by the time I get home, I have no willpower left to work on anything else. I’m sapped. And drained. All I want to do is eat chips. Salty ones at that.

Maybe it’s time to go back to baby steps and the smallest Post-It notes possible. Maybe I need to carve out time first thing in the morning to get things done. Or maybe it’s time to find ways to replenish willpower. Ways that don’t involve chips. Stay tuned.