Ah the oh so important New Year resolutions… so much pressure, so much expectation. Here are my thoughts and what I’m working through on that whole matter.
I don’t know about you but I find the transition from the holidays to the New Year not a particularly easy one. I am feeling it this year and I remember the same thing last year. I kinda don’t know how to feel this time of year really.
I love Christmas. I mostly like the break in routine. My corporate classes take a break, my husband is off work and we get to spend a lot of time doing things that we normally don’t do. This year we did quite a bit of hiking which was fantastic. We also socialized with friends. But my favourite though was spending time at my parents’ cottage, just the two of us.
I also love the New Year. I like the anticipation of the year to come. I take time around this time of year to reflect on the last year and plan for the upcoming year. A lot of my planning involves visualizations, brain storming and plain old day dreaming. And as much as I like the break that Christmas provides, I also like getting back into a routine. I like eating healthy and exercising regularly. This year I’m particularly happy to get back in my meditation routine. Finally… I’m not going to lie, I like getting my ‘alone time’ back when my family goes back to work and school.
To me, this time of year is a big transition and transitions usually come with mixed emotions. Letting go of the past (for me, the anticipation of the Christmas break and then the break itself) usually carries with it an element of sadness. Closing the door reluctantly. But then when I look forward, to the year ahead, I am filled with excitement and anticipation. I love the quote that talks about the year being a 365 day book and you decide what gets written. A fresh, clean slate. I have such grand and fantastic plans for what my year and beyond looks like. I have everything I want. I am full of abundance and contentment. But then, my saboteur kicks in. I have A LOT of work to do to make my vision board come to life. Those pages a day for my ‘365 page book’…. wow, they have to be big! No one wants to read about a mundane, regular daily grind. I have to work my butt off and not falter to get to where I ‘want’ to be. Woah… talk about expectations!
So this is when I take a deep breath in. And I realize… it’s OK. Everything is how it should be.
It’s OK to be sad that Christmas is over.
It’s OK to want to kick it to the curb at the same time.
It’s OK to have big dreams for the New Year.
It’s OK to be nervous about them.
It’s OK to eat quinoa and spinach for a day.
It’s OK to be drawn in by that left over chocolate in the cupboard.
It’s OK to want to get up to practice yoga or go for a run.
It’s OK to sleep in instead, on the last day of your vacation.
It’s OK to want to take on all those challenges that are sprinkled all over Instagram and Facebook.
It’s OK not to take on anything new.
It’s OK to start something new to try to make it a habit.
It’s OK to stumble.
It’s OK to start at any time.
IT’S ALL OK… all of it. You are OK… all of you. There’s no need to make changes in your life because it is January 1st. Don’t get me wrong. I am a big fan of being healthy… inside and out, mind and body. I believe in dropping beliefs and habits that don’t support you in being the best you can be. But I’m also teaching myself that it’s OK to stumble and fall. It’s OK to have to start over.
A yoga class ends in savasana, also known as corpse pose. After savasana we usually roll to our side into a fetal position and hold for a moment or two. This transition signifies new beginnings, after the end of our physical yoga practice. I often talk about this in the classes I teach. How you can start fresh, begin again, at any time. Any time of the day, time of the week, time of the month, time of the year.
So if you’ve set New Year’s resolutions that aren’t going so well, or are having a slow start to the New Year and haven’t set any yet, you’re alright. You can set intentions and goals at any time and you can reset them over and over. If you have a vision or a goal, just don’t give up. It’s a journey that is full of distractions and diversions. Try to remind yourself that you are exactly where you should be and YOU ARE OK.
With regards to the transition from the holidays and the new year for me it depends on the year that’s ending. If it was a particularly good year with a lot of success and happiness then I’m reluctant to let that go. If it was a particularly bad year then I look forward to the New Year with a lot more hope and optimism. As for new Years resolutions I never set them. I believe many people feel they have to set them , that it is an obligation. Many resolutions fail because of it (diets and gym memberships are classics). If you make changes in the new year that you want to do then the chances of success are higher. As you said Susan, it’s okay to stumble and fall. It’s also okay to change your focus and go in a totaly different direction. If something is not giving you fulfillment or happiness then trying something else is probably a better choice than sticking with it out of obligation and guilt. January 1 to me is the first day of January, the first day of a new year. Not a date which is supposed to trigger some magical transition into the healthiest human-being on the planet. I set goals for myself all the time. Most times they centre around health and wellness but I do them because I want to and I enjoy the feelings that come along with them. I stumble all the time, fail sometimes as well. I’m learning more and more to accept that this is okay. I have but one known enemy. The Man in the Mirror. I’m developing a better relationship with him and who knows, we may become friends some day. The journey continues. Live. Love. Laugh.
Love it Ron! Thanks for sharing. I love your quote “I have but one known enemy…” It’s all about striving to be a better version of ourselves while being okay with exactly who we are right now. Good thing we have our yoga practice to help us figure all this out! 🙂