I don’t make New Year’s resolutions.
Never really have, which is probably why they’ve never really worked. Ha.
They’re fraught with pressure–and too much hype.
Besides, I don’t think making sweeping pronouncements about the person I really intend to become is all that helpful.
I mean, right out of the gate, the message is ‘I’m not enough’.
Who needs that? (And anyway, I’ve given up being ‘not enough’. Not just for Lent, mind you. Forevuh. )
So you can probably guess how I feel about the slick little slogan ‘New Year, New You’.
Yep, it makes me want to throw up.
Now that I’ve gotten that out of the way……here’s what works for me instead.
I hold one question close:
“Is the life I’m living the same as the one that wants to live in me?” (from the book Let Your Life Speak by Parker Palmer)
I find this to be one of the most beautiful questions ever.
If my answer is ‘yes’, hooray. I identify exactly what it is I’m doing and being and decide how I’m going to keep doing and being that.
If it’s ‘no’, then I figure out 1) what I need to stop doing and being so I can 2) start doing and being the thing that wants to come alive in me.
Now you might think “That’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever heard!”, and if so, you’d join the likes of people like my Aunt Marguerite, who used to say those very words whenever she heard something she thought was utterly ridiculous. (But she’s dead now, so I guess technically, you are alone in thinking this. Well, I mean, unless someone else is thinking it, too.)
But I digress….
The point is, answering this one question helps me get to the heart of what I want in my life. It allows me to listen to what’s calling me and if need be, to pivot and redirect my energy towards that.
It’s not only clarifying, but also wildly effective. What you might call a twofer.
So, if you’ve landed in the New Year and, like me, aren’t a fan of making resolutions (perhaps even feel a tad hostile), see what happens when you spend some time with this question.
Unearth your journal or a pen and paper, make a cup of tea and check in with yourself: what’s niggling you, whispering to you, tugging at you–maybe screaming at you–that you can feel in your bones you want to do, be, make, take, have, share, or bring alive?
There’s no right or wrong answer.
There’s simply the life that wants to live in you.
The only other question is: Will you let it?
HAPPY 2021! May you feel ease, peace and generous sprinklings of amusement as this New Year unfolds. xo