With every new year, the resolutions rear their ugly heads. It hits like an avalanche. Every life coach, educator, fitness instructor, and social media influencer (the list goes on) pitch new systems that promise to rejuvenate us for 2023.
We are programmed to believe that we must make ourselves into something more, something less, or at least something different than we actually are.
I have conflicting feelings of relief and overwhelm at the arrival of a new year. As we release ourselves from disappointments of the past 12 months, as well as celebrate our wins and hard-earned insights – it can feel like a never-ending merry-go-round.
How do we affect true and lasting change without endless bargaining with ourselves every time January rolls around? What if we jump off the carousel and stop embracing messages that insist that our skills as a parent, spouse, employee, boss, daughter, or son are not good enough? Or those that imply we should be healthier, better looking, more disciplined, or goal-oriented?
Rather than chasing what others say will “fix” us or our careers, like buying more seminars and classes we don’t have time to take, fancy clothes we don’t need, signing up at the trendiest gym, adding more therapy sessions, or attending yet another networking conference – isn’t the answer more basic?
We can re-motivate ourselves simply by harking back to what makes us unique in the first place, what is most meaningful to us, and what endeavors make us feel excited to get out of bed in the morning. This is how real success can prevail – because we are truly invested.
I for one am not making resolutions this time, and I think it will be the biggest game-changer ever. Best wishes to all of you!
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I’ve read this post several times. Maybe I’m just at a different point in life; I don’t feel stress with the ringing in of the new year to make promises. Maybe because I live in New England, where we hunker down for the next 3 months, nesting, getting cozy, reading, and having a libation by the fireplace, this time of year brings me peace and comfort. You may want to check out the New York Times article on the 5 days of happiness. Wishing you a peace-filled year ahead.
So many factors enter into how we each interpret these “traditions.” Where you are in your life journey, where you live, and the pressures of career or family all enter into it. Being more content and accepting of who we are rather than bowing to the expectations of others is the most relevant factor I am referring to. Thank you for your engagement with the blog! I enjoy your perspectives.
Yay! This is good healthy advice. I gave up making resolutions many years ago when I just faced the fact that I didn’t want to keep them. Since I’m not insane, I dropped this custom that I realized was stressful and pointless for me.
Love. I’m still making resolutions, but am so inspired by your creative voice and perspective.