"I love New Year’s resolutions!" said no one ever. Admit it: The only thing worse than ruminating over the past year, determining what needs to change in the coming months, and pretending you're going to stick to your guns is answering fellow NYE party-goers when asked what you will do differently in the coming year. Only a masochist likes to admit they were out of line before and torture themselves for the next 365 days in a traditionally punitive response to said actions. And yet many of us lay claims for future endeavors, whether or not we see it through (past January 2).
But did you know that some people actually (gasp) like New Year's resolutions and look forward to enacting them? You can be that person, too. Promise. It comes down to content and commitment, and it's not as painful as it seems. First, you need to pick a realistic goal. You are a busy human! You work, you relationship, you take care of your home and loved ones and hopefully your self, maybe even a hobby or two-- there's not much time for anything else in your life. There are only so many hours in a day! So start small.
Want to treat your body better? It does a lot for you. But try not to torment yourself in an effort to transform-- that’s clearly counterintuitive. Don't quit something cold turkey or starve/overwork yourself for some diet and exercise routine. Look at all you do, appreciate what you accomplish with those arms and hands and backs and legs and feet and learn to love what nature gave you.
Then, change one thing out a day. Pick a healthier breakfast choice. Promise to eat more veggies. Take that multivitamin every day. Indulge a little. Try to go to sleep ten minutes earlier on the weeknights. Don't sign up for 30 yoga sessions for January, start with just 20 minute a week and use that time to give yourself a break. Find out why you do the things you know you shouldn't and work on making the right choices for you.
Once you’re feeling better in your own skin, step out of your comfort zone a little. Wear a monochromatic outfit. Splurge on those Rag & Bone boots you've been eyeing. Rock that sock bun twisty braid thing you’ve mastered in the comfort of your own abode to work. Try a new shade of lipstick. Dare to be bold. Mix things up a little, so that bigger deviations don’t feel so wild. Or, better, so that the wild choices feel right.
Resolutions shouldn't add stress to our lives. We should be taking the holiday to think about how we can better ourselves, not make our days harder. If we feel like we can accomplish our mini goals, we'll want to do those things more, which in turn fulfills our larger goals. Hey, you never know, perhaps resolutions will be a monthly activity for you!
Will you be resolving yourself to a specific aim for 2013? If so, what is your decree and how will you accomplish it?