In 1996, I made a new year's resolution to never again make a new year's resolution. 18 years later, I've stuck to it. It's the only one that's ever worked.
The new year IS an excellent time to reevaluate our lives...take inventory of what's working and what's not. However, often resolutions in the new year take the form of things we want to change about ourselves, as if the thing we want to change is so flawed it takes a full new year to give us the courage to address it.
And therein lies my beef with the whole new year resolution system. It's become subconsciously based on quick fixes.
The Resolution Myth: I'm so frustrated with myself, my life, that I need a new calendar year to fix things.
Instead, how about we step into our lives as we desire them and stay there for good? No more longing for a slimmer waistline only to abandon that new gym membership in March. No more purging of clutter only to find yourself paralyzed, unable to move through the sea of papers you unearth from the deepest depths of your garage (I've been there--it sucks).
Here are tips on taking your resolution behavior to the next level...and finally having permission to ditch the vicious cycle for good:
At the new year, express what's not going well. Write those down, talk with someone about them, get to the heart of what you feel might need to change. And I'm suggesting get it ALL out. Come clean with yourself.
Take a vow that you can make a resolution or not, but from this day forward you have been given permission to step free of temporary resolution cycles. Your desire becomes your new path. Release temporary fixes from your dialog.
Take your "not working" list and turn it around into positives...declare your life's intentions every day in new, achievable ways. For example, if you would normally resolve to "be more organized and live clutter free in the new year," take that statement and flip it..."I value my personal space, emotional health, and time so much that clutter and chaos have no place here." Switch the inner dialog so that you are the one deciding how your life should be lived, not out of frustration or longing, but an acknowledgement that your desires have value. YOU have value.
And best of all, release the timetables. Most of us rush to make change instantaneously out of passion and the potential each new year represents. When we fail in the first month, we are left to feel disappointed, lacking. Enter a derelict gym membership and renewed love affair with baked goods. Instead, just know that your desires are not time-sensitive.
You might want to also make yourself a crown...you totally deserve a crown for all that you do. :)
With this release, I hope that each of you will go forth and frolic into 2015. Love your life wildly. The world in which we live is becoming more challenging and intense by the minute. Let's hold on to the things that matter and be active participants in both our own lives and the lives of our friends, family, and communities...find your happy place so that you can help uplift other to theirs.
Wishing you peace, prosperity, and courage to love with open hearts and minds.