If you’ve been on the internet at all within the last 30 days, I’m sure you’ve noticed the never-ending lists of new year’s resolutions flooding your social feeds. Maybe you found yourself rolling your eyes and scoffing a time or two because 1) you’ve already given up your own resolution (and maybe you can’t believe so-and-so is still keeping up with theirs…) or 2) you aren’t a resolution kinda guy or gal. If you are cheering people on and feeling encouraged by the successes of others, then we applaud you and love the way you are spreading positivity!
No matter where you are regarding resolutions, allow us to invite you into a space of appreciation for fresh starts. Resolutions may be a frequent topic of conversation at the start of every year, but don’t let timing stress you out. We want to help you make the most of the new year and remind you that it’s never too late to start a new rhythm.
Remembering why you started and recognizing where you’re at both mentally and physically is a great place to start. Allowing yourself space for introspection will lead to clearer thinking and slower living - guiding you away from impulse decisions and overcommitting. In turn, this will give you time to take small steps towards your goal. For example: if your resolution for 2019 was to work out 6 days a week but before January 1st you hadn’t picked up your sneakers since last Spring, there’s a good chance you’ve overcommitted! Take a step back to listen to your body and assess your situation. Ask yourself - is this a life-giving routine or does it feel like drudgery? Grab a journal and write out your reasons for your resolution(s). Find 10 minutes in your day to seek guidance in prayer or meditate to clear your mind and center yourself. This process looks different for all of us, but being intentional about resolutions is beneficial to everyone. With all of that being said, I do want to add that working towards a goal is hard work and it may not feel like a joy-filled adventure every day- but having a healthy mindset and pinpointing why you’re doing what you’re doing will change everything.
After setting intentions for your year, you must remember to give yourself grace. I hate to break it to you, but even after taking time to center yourself and understanding your reasoning for your resolutions, you still won’t be perfect. Perfection IS impossible, remember that! Setting such a high bar for yourself is unhealthy and can lead to negative self talk and even self-loathing for not meeting your goals. Give yourself grace. If you mess up on your resolution, you can start over however many times you want- there are no rules! Be kind to yourself and continually remind yourself why you started to stay motivated. Use positive self-talk, cheer yourself on and grab a friend or two to help hold you accountable; they’ll be there to encourage you and pick you back up if you fall. Failure is a part of life, and it’s often what causes the most growth. When we fail we learn, and when we learn we improve. Allowing space to forgive ourselves is a must when it comes to fresh starts.
Lastly, being present is the most rewarding thing you can give yourself and those around you. Don’t let yourself get so wrapped up in your own goals that you miss out on what’s going on in others’ lives. Call your mom, meet up with a friend over coffee, read a memoir- there’s so much life happening outside of ourselves, and it’s such a gift to connect with others. If we become so preoccupied with bettering ourselves, then we aren’t really allowing others’ to know and understand our truest selves. Don’t get me wrong- I’m all for working towards healthy goals, but we don’t need to become someone we’re not in order to be found worthy (to society or even just to ourselves). Vulnerability breeds vulnerability, so I urge you to use your resolutions as a jumping off point for sharing your heart and in turn others might just share their own. Ask questions and be inquisitive of others. If you shift your focus to caring for people over yourself and valuing connection, your goals will feel less heavy and burdensome, I promise.
We hope we have been an encouragement to you to continue pressing on towards your goals in a healthy, mindful way this year. We’d love for you to share your goals with us so we can be encouraged by you, too! Comment below to let us know how you are making changes in 2019!