OK, we need to talk. How many years have we been making and breaking New Year’s Resolutions? I’m going to hazard a guess at this formula: your current age minus approx 10 (I’m hoping that we didn’t start getting so dissatisfied with ourselves before the age of 10!)
So what’s the problem with New Year’s Resolutions? Probably lots of things, but let’s start with January – cold, dark, the hard part of the winter when Christmas is behind us and Spring still seems a long way off (yes, I’m talking Scotland here). And we really think that’s a good time to get ourselves motivated?
I get it, it’s the Clean Slate principle. It’s a new year, we can start again from scratch – but personally I find the time of the year that actually has the right energy for that is the end of summer/start of Autumn. Back to school time. Anyone else got happy memories of new pencils in the pencil case signaling a fresh start?
Another major problem with New Year’s Resolutions is that they are in the plural. So we’re not just going to lose a couple of pounds, we’re going to eat healthy all the time, exercise every day, start a meditation practice, get organised, keep the house clean, get off social media ……… Yeh, right! All the habit change experts recommend focusing on one change at a time, but no, we’re convinced that this year our sheer strength of will is going to turn our entire lifetime of habits around for the better.
So I’m going to suggest being gentle with ourselves this New Year. Instead of focusing on all the things we want to change about ourselves, let’s use the New Year to reflect on how far we’ve come, celebrate the good habits we did (even partially) keep going over the crazy festive season, and maybe set a teensy-weensy intention in the right direction for that one habit we’re going to work on in January.
Let me know which one you choose!