I mentioned in another post that I HATE New Year’s resolutions, I do. I think they are demotivating and counter productive. I do believe in CHANGE.
I recently read, “Tribes” by Seth Godin. I won’t lie to you and tell you it was the best book I’ve ever read and I don’t think that is even what Godin was going for but he made a few really great points about change that I have tried to make in some of my sessions. Godin writes:
“Perfect is an illusion, one that was created to maintain the status quo. The Six Sigma charade is largely about hiding from change, because change is never perfect. Change means reinvention, and until something is reinvented, we have no idea what the spec is.”
Change is messy and hard. Carl Rogers was a visionary, a leader and a passionate therapist. He talked a lot about how difficult change is and how hard we have to work for lasting change.
Anyone who knows me well knows that this is not my favorite time of year, largely because I am not cool with being cold (yes the play on words was on purpose). The thing I do like about this time of year is the opportunity for hope and optimism. January is like a new box of crayons, sharpened, bright, fresh and ready to go!! Who knows what you could create with them!!! January of 2017 is no different! That doesn’t mean it will be EASY but honestly, if it were easy, everyone would do it.
You aren’t everyone and that’s awesome!! No one is perfect and as Godin pointed out, perfect is and illusion. So do you want perfect or do you want real? Real, life-changing change is going to come with some setbacks. You may even get where you wanted to go and learn it isn’t want you thought it would be.
So as we look ahead to 2017 (a brand new box of crayons) and all that it could be for all of us, let’s bring self-compassion and the understanding that there is no such thing as perfect. I dare you to start this year with courage and honesty. What will you do to make this year great?!
I wish you ALL a safe, warm and happy holiday season!
As the New Year creeps up, I usually see more in the news, on Facebook and hear from people that they are thinking about what they plan to do differently in the next year and that often comes in the form of New Year’s Resolutions. To be honest, I have a tendency to glaze over or ignore most of what I hear and see about New Year’s resolutions because they are so often forgotten by March or even February.
They are so easily forgotten or given up on because they are often focused on something that is wrong or missing with your life. Things like
You have heard them too. Maybe you have even made them and felt sad, stressed, disappointed or discouraged when you struggled or even failed.
The reason they don’t work and I don’t really like them is they are so often motivated by what is ‘wrong’ and/or they are unrealistic.
If you want next year to be even better than this one, why not spend some time thinking about what you did right THIS year?
Did you land a big deal at work?
Did you read to your kids? Did you laugh with them?
Where you there for a friend when you had a lot going on too?
Did you celebrate an important anniversary?
Even if 2016 was difficult for you, surely there was something that you did right, something you can be proud of. You and I both know you did something right.
I truly believe that big change happens in small shifts. When you are able to name some of the things that went right for you in 2016, you can start to think about what you would like to build on. For example, if you saved money but not as much as you would have liked, appreciate and acknowledge that you did save and think about how you could save another 5-10% in 2017. And be realistic. Think about the year you have ahead of you. You know you can’t see into the future but there are things we can predict. Do you have a big move coming up? Do you have a procedure that you will need to plan for?
What brings you joy? And how can you make space for more of it? Think about how you want to feel this time next year. Do you really care what the scale says if you feel healthy and active? Do you really care what your bank account says if you have had experiences in 2017 that brought you closer to the life you have always wanted? You are so much more likely to stick to your goals if you are having fun doing it!!
I’m not suggesting you not worry about your health and I’m definitely not implying that you shouldn’t think about how you spend your money. What I want to communicate is that time goes by really quickly. You will blink and 2017 will be over. Do you have time not to enjoy the rest of your life?
I think most New Year’s Resolutions fail because they lack self-compassion and focus on what is going wrong with your life instead of what is going right. Maybe this year, if you want a shift in 2017, you could focus on what you want more of and how to better care for yourself in 2017. I dare you!!