A new year, a new beginning, and a new set of impulsive, unrealistic are written down in the front of our brand new journal.
Perhaps some of the items on our list are the same ones from last year, and the year before, and so on. Many of us create a fast and furious list of idealistic fitness, financial, and personal goals that we abandon remorsefully just a few weeks later. Have you ever tracked your past list of stringent declarations? “From now on I will stop smoking!” or “I will exercise daily and lose 10 lbs.” or “I will stop buying clothes and clear all my debt!” How many times have you declared similar plans of action and failed?
There are several calendar systems as we have graduated from the earliest sundials and markings from a stone. Our New Year’s day is just another day for many other cultures as they celebrate on a different day based on a separate calendar system. The current International Gregorian calendar gives us a sense of order, unity and control. The first day of January does not have to be our day of resolution and evolution. But we are only in control of ourselves, our beliefs, our habits and our perceptions. The seasons in our lives are based on our own individual journey. We have our natural rhythms and we have our own personal new year.
Life is synonymous with change. It is necessary to alter our plans and carve out an improved design when we are headed in the wrong direction. However, creating change in our lives has nothing to do with the time of the year or the right season. The New Year is just another year.
Has your life really changed from December 31st to January 1st? Is it any different from any other day? Every new day brings us renewed hope, revitalized energy, rejuvenated bodies, new blessings, fresh challenges, and inspirational gifts. Most of us, often willfully dive into a new project or behavior without understanding what is truly involved. Rushing to our favorite bookstore, we feverishly search to find suggestions to accomplish our new set of goals by buying the latest and greatest books.
To be successful, we must be committed to our strategy with taut determination. The word resolution is derived from the Latin verb, solvere, which mean to dissolve, to loosen, and to break down. In other words in the act of resolution, we are focusing our energies to simplify, and to distill the complexities of our life into smaller manageable pieces. Real change is about fostering a new set of behaviors by understanding what has worked in the past versus what hasn’t. We become aware of the habits and lifestyle choices that take up most of daily energies.
Is your time and attention being misused currently? How can you free yourself from unhealthy foods, destructive people, disempowering habits, and pointless amusements and indulgences? Only with this information in hand can we make the appropriate modifications. The New Year’s resolutions are illusionary if we are not willing to genuinely commit to them through discipline, determination, adaptability, compassion and dedicated actions.
Take a look at your current set of resolutions. Are your intentions really based on your best attempts at just having a stronger will power? Some people have outstanding abilities and heroic virtues to quit an addictive behavior. Yes, “cold turkey”! But this is only a small percentage versus the number of failures.
Why do we wait an entire year to check in to decide what have we accomplished? What if we created a better system where we look at our accomplishments and failures on a monthly basis or even look at how we progressed on a weekly basis? This may give us an opportunity to react and create our lives in more influential and proactive way. Why wait to resolve our eating habits, set your career goals, manage your debts, or create a new lifestyle.
Let this be a different year with a renewed outlook on life. Let your New year’s resolution be – “No more New year’s resolutions!” Close your journals that are filled with quick thoughtless resolutions. Sit down and contemplate what you truly want in your life. Analyze what is working in your life and be grateful. Then investigate the aspects of your life that did not work for you? Explore what habits, behaviors, belief systems, and actions that do not work for you anymore. Where did you waste your energetic resources?
Once you have this information, open up that journal again and set your new commitments. Check in your progress monthly or even weekly to make sure you are headed in the right direction. Be kind to yourself as you progress towards your new life by allowing for challenges and mistakes. Celebrate your triumphs! Be adaptable and flexible so that you can modify your steps if necessary. Most importantly have fun!