It is that time of year again. Everywhere you go you will hear people and businesses talking about New Year’s Resolutions. It’s great to see everyone stopping to assess and take stock of their goals, changes, relationships etc. What did you resolve? What do you want to improve? Who or what do you want to break away from? Who do you want to attract into your life? Is it a greater income that you seek? Or the perfect job? The perfect life?
Take a moment to think about this – why do we only focus on this during the calendar transition to the new year? Why do we only evaluate our personal inventory once a year? Let’s not forget that we, as humans, have the power of free will. And willpower is the single catalyst behind all change. Our brains are designed to keep us safe even if the manner in which we are choosing to live isn’t. Willpower will get you started on the correct path to change – but then your brain will take notice and use its power to give you excuses, negative self talk and doubt…..I can’t work out today because I went to bed really late last night/ I feel a cold coming on/I can skip a day/fill in your own excuse here.
Now or when? Instead of an annual evaluation, why don’t we assess our progress monthly or even weekly? We wouldn’t get off track as easily with a more frequent system of self check and balance. There are countless things we can do to ensure our success if we commit and frequently reevaluate.
Just recently I started a thirty day detox. Not a water or juice-style detox but an entire organic food one. I have been asked so many times why I would start this over the holidays instead of waiting until after the New Year. I tell them all that I don’t want to be a “When Person,” the kind of person who has great goals but scheduled for a non-specific time in the future that they label, “when it’s the right time.” I feel like “When” quickly turns into “Never” because it’s just so easy to find excuses and rationalize the decision not to take action. “When” never shows up at the perfect time, so let’s turn When into Now. I felt a little like people doubted me and seemed surprised that I wasn’t easily converted to their way of thinking.
Guess what? I made it through the holidays, detox and all. I attended numerous holiday parties with family and colleagues, celebrated Christmas and rang in the New Year. I was surrounded often by what most people would see as “temptation” during this social season – desserts, snacks, alcohol. Amazingly, I never really felt tempted. I had made a commitment to myself and was excited to achieve my results. I fully believed that nothing would taste as good as the accomplishment would feel. On January 2 when the holiday season officially “closed,” I felt energized and healthy. I didn’t look back with regrets and have to develop a plan to combat overindulgence. I just continued on with the plan I set in place weeks earlier with the confidence and satisfaction of knowing I was in my Now.
I am really excited about a new year and all its possibilities. But I am even more excited about today, the day I can take action. Now. Today is the first page in this chapter in your life. Make it a great story.