By Natasha E. Feghali
The New Year is upon us, which means it’s time to make a resolution or two. So what will it be this year: lose weight, again; promise yourself a change of job, again; earn more money, perhaps?
The truth is, most of us will do the same thing we always do: set some goals that will be forgotten about by the 7th January, or thereabouts. It is common practice to keep re-creating ourselves every year with the hopes that we will actually stick to our new plan, routine, lifestyle or saving grace. Yet, it can be totally crushing when nothing works in our favor and the plan becomes worthless.
Sometimes the idea is to progress yet so many barriers present themselves that we get so frustrated and give up. Thus, leading to a total crush in our ambition and self-esteem as well as thoughts of failure and even a desire to keep going.
Our lives are always evolving and growing and therefore it’s only natural to progress however sometimes when we force a plan into action it may not work. Or it may be working, but the hurdles and un-anticipated downtimes may derail us from continuing.
Weeks ago I started asking my family what theirs were going to be. I have a fantasy that January 1st will be THE day we launch headlong into our new-and-improved lives. I LOVE a fresh start, and there is nothing fresher than the first week in January. But I know better. People don’t just make resolutions and then the next day spring into lasting action. I may wish this was possible, but time has shown that it probably isn’t.
The way to move from here into action is to take an honest look at how the change you are preparing for can truly make your life better. How do you think and feel about yourself as you are right now, if you never change the behavior in question? Maybe you are often stressed, and you’re seriously thinking about getting in an exercise habit to combat this.
Without more physical activity, you think of yourself as sedentary and out of shape, and you feel stressed and anxious. Now, imagine yourself having made the change you are looking for. How will you think of yourself differently? Most importantly, how will you feel?
Rather than rushing forward in a panic to set resolutions or a list of goals you can start on New Year’s day, forget all that and enter the New Year in a mode of being absolutely present, and absolutely positive about how great it’s going to be.
If you do this, and endeavour to maintain this approach, you’ll end up doing everything you’re supposed to as and when it’s supposed to be done. Stop the “I must” thought mill turning over all the things you should have done this year that you’ll “definitely do next year”.
Enter the New Year with zero pressure on your back to do anything other than remain open to the possibility of your potential, receptive to change and ready to show compassion to yourself for your shortcomings. Out of the state of being will arise all the doing, and achievements you never planned for but will be amazed to see unfold.
The reality is that there’s no point in setting the same resolutions you’ve been setting for years on end, only to feel disappointed and down on yourself. Sometimes, on New Year’s Eve — or in life — we feel pressured to commit to changes we just aren’t ready to make. If you aren’t ready to spring into action, there’s no harm in that. Please realize that you have more options than either making a resolution or doing nothing at all.