As the new year begins, the tendency is to come up with new year resolutions. We do this every year, and every year they are broken. Why, I asked myself, are new year resolutions always designed to make us feel guilty? Why do we always resolve to deprive ourselves of things, or to do difficult things? No wonder we can never keep our resolutions.
As I tried to answer these questions, I thought over many conversations I’ve had over the years with many people, particularly women. Most of us spend our lives reprimanding ourselves for things we do not do and disliking our bodies or our hair or something about ourselves that we expend a lot of energy on hiding from others. Women in particular have a biological structure that goes through several definite cycles of change; looking after the self therefore requires a conscious difference in awareness and thinking. We need to love ourselves more and punish ourselves less. Because, think about it. A glass might be half empty – but it’s also half full.
Here are some resolutions – and how to rewrite them:
Old: I am going to diet.
Rewritten: I am going to eat foods that nurture my body and make me healthy. I will spend the next several years of my life eating great, delicious food that is healthy, and I will find recipes that will combine health and taste.
Old: I am going to eat less.
Rewritten: I am going to eat more health food and less junk food.
Old: I am going to avoid foods and activities I love.
Rewritten: I am going to build a relationship with those foods and things that will benefit my body.
Old: I am going to force myself to exercise.
Rewritten: I shall find fun ways to be more active and choose activities that are interesting and sustainable.
Old: I am going to have a body, hair and skin like so-and-so.
Rewritten: I shall lovingly take care of what I have and make it even better.
Here are some resolutions:
1. I am unique and shall make my gifts shine brighter rather than and compare myself with others.
2. I shall enjoy the special gifts I have, the time I spend with my loved ones and the sensations I feel that allow me to appreciate life.
3. I shall enjoy everything I already have by living life more consciously.
From HT Brunch, January 9
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