Alternative New Year’s Resolutions

Resolutions & Failure

So. If you are like most adults in a whole lot of the world a few days ago you set some sort of New Year’s resolution for the year. How’s that going? If you’re like most of us (again), the honest answer is: shitty. I mean we start well, you should see my yoga studio the first week of January, y’all. There is not a free spot in the whole place and everyone’s in their fancy new yoga clothes and all eager and ready to go.

But around about now, into the second week of January the numbers have started to drop. The yoga outfits are looking a little less new and shiny, and the faces are looking a little less excited to be sweating like water buffalo with 30 other strangers.

Give it a month and it’ll just be the regulars who the ladies at the counter know by name. And a whole lot of people will have given up, and considered themselves failures. Which is really too bad because they aren’t. I mean they didn’t stick with doing yoga daily for a whole year, but y’all they showed up. They actually got themselves out of a nice cozy bed and onto their mat and worked their tails off. And yet somehow, they feel like failures. What’s with that?

The Alternative

The problem of course is the resolution in the first place. We make resolutions at the end of one year and the beginning of the next almost always out of a sense of lack or guilt. I ate too much crap so I must go punish myself with exercise. Ugh, I didn’t make enough money last year so I must not spend anything at all for six months. I’m was a shitty daughter/sister/son and so I am required to call my Mom/Sister/Brother/Wolfman every day!

But guilt is a horrible motivator. If it worked, Mom’s would have nagged us all into sitting up straight, calling them regularly, and flossing, eons ago. But it doesn’t. Because when we start from a place of lack, or guilt, we set ourselves up for failure. We’re already focused on what’s wrong with us and when that doesn’t change instantly (which is impossible) we hammer ourselves with more guilt and eventually (out of self protection) we just give up the whole endeavor and internalize more self judgement and dislike. And the whole process is set up to run again next year.

No wonder humanity is so damn grumpy all the time!

resolution, guilt free, new year, self love

A Suggestion

I’m going to suggest that we maybe stop doing the same thing over and over again, and try something different.  What if we didn’t start from a place of guilt or lack. What if we started the new year from a place of desire, promise, and joy. What might that change?

I know what you’re thinking: “I want chocolate cake so badly right now.” Ahem, wait, that’s me. What you’re thinking is that I’m out of my blooming mind. You need to make yourself better, not do some hippy dippy, everyone’s great bullshit. I’m here to suggest that hippy dippy bullshit is exactly what you need. The truth is, you’re awesome. No, there’s no one behind you, I mean you. My tradition says that you (every human being) is made in the shape of divinity. Which is pretty awesome. My other tradition greets one another (and departs as well) with a word that acknowledges seeing the divine or holy in the person in front of us (and they in us.)

So let’s start there, even if you don’t believe it yet. You are star stuff, you are divine imagination. You are holiness made flesh and blood and set loose to explore and play and create community with other little stars. Please stop beating up holiness!

One Step At A Time

When you begin from a place of self-love (or even take the first step on a journey toward self-love) you start with this in mind, that you are a holy creation. That you are worthy of joy, belonging, and blessing. And that lambasting a holy being for having too much chocolate cake over the holidays is a shocking thing to do!

Maybe it felt like you had the best of intentions when you set your New Year resolution, but if you’re starting to struggle with it, let’s start over together.

First things first. Let go of the guilt. The truth is almost everyone “fails” those well meant resolutions, which means the resolution is the problem not the people.

Second, if you took even one tiny step then you’ve already won. Pat yourself on the back and again, let’s start over together.

#balance4life

A while ago I got tired of trying to make myself fit into a certain mold, and using “self improvement” stuff to do that. It didn’t fit me, it felt crappy, I failed constantly, and I ended up grumpy and guilty and seriously anxious. So I stopped and I took a couple big steps back and began thinking about things from a different direction. Out of some false starts and stop the #balance4life tool was born. Now, it is not a planner. It is not a self-improvement tool. It won’t solve all your problems, or make you a million bucks, or fix that horrible movie adaptation of your favorite book.

But it can help you remember, over and over again, what really matters.

The concept is simple. Prioritizing what brings you joy, what supports your holistic health and wellness, and honoring your divine worth every damn day.

To help you do that I have a simple one sheet set of reminders. Sign up to have the tool sent straight to your email inbox to get started. Below I’ve listed suggestions on how to make it work for you.

Make It Work

  • Edit! There are lines left blank for you to fill in the things you most want to include in your life.
  • Cross out, change, or add to anything to make it feel right to you.
  • Laminate the sheet and use dry erase markers to have an easy reminder you only have to print once and use over and over.
  • Keep it at your desk, on your mirror, or somewhere else where you’ll see it frequently.
  • Feel free to change things up and you go along and discover what works and what doesn’t: that’s not failure, that’s evolution!
  • Remember the goal is joyholistic health (whatever that means to you not some magazine), and honoring of your divine worth.

Are you ready for an adventure? Come along with the rest of the Crazy Whole Life tribe as we walk the path to building a 2018 filled with joy, light, and transformation. Not because we are unworthy, but because we are so incredibly worth the effort. Share in the comments: What do you want to make time for in 2018 that will bring you (and others) joy?

resolution, guilt free, new year, self love

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