Six Resolutions for the New Year.

So, my initial resolution for 2012 was to live with no goals. I am sad to say this has not really worked out for me so far. Tossing my goals and structure aside was supposed to help me live more mindfully in the moment; instead, I’ve lost all sense of priority, my boundaries have collapsed, and I’m allowing external factors (like my day job) determine how I spend all of my time. Without goals to help keep me on track, I’m finding myself blown in the winds by everyday life, since I haven’t reached that point in my emotional development where I truly believe that my own health and well-being should be my number one priority. I don’t naturally fight for time to spend on taking care of myself unless I have a goal to work towards. Obviously, there’s a deeper, underlying issue here that I need to work on, but I also can’t let myself destroy my health and well-being while I wait for that magic switch to turn on and I’m suddenly capable of living each moment mindfully and purposefully.

I’ve also been very inspired by my friend Stacy’s progress on her goals for the year. She’s writing in her blog about her triumphs and her stumblings, and I love how she’s tracking things, keeping tabs on herself, holding herself accountable for her actions, and processing and analyzing all of it. The fact that she’s spending so much time paying attention to the things she most wants to pay attention to really is an inspiration, and helps me to see what would better help me right now at this stage in my life. Until I’m better at defending my boundaries against external factors, I definitely need to track, analyze, and hold myself accountable to very specific goals that I make.

So, I’ve decided to throw away my old resolution of not having any goals, and replace them instead with six simple things to focus on for the balance of 2012:

EAT. I need to eat better. I have a terrible relationship with food — in fact, my entire family has a terrible relationship with food. From sugar addiction to binge eating to body image issues, it’s an unhealthy and dangerous dynamic. I need to eat more nutrient-rich foods, I need to eat less processed foods, and I need to avoid empty calories. It would be nice to try to eat more locally, too.

SLEEP. I absolutely need to sleep more. Now, I’m averaging 5 hours of sleep a night, which is much better than the 4 I was averaging previously, but there is so much more room for improvement. I have to stop stretching myself so thin and living day-by-day off of adrenaline. I can see my performance at work and home suffer when I’m sleep-deprived, but I still have trouble making myself go to bed early.

MOVE. I need to move more. Exercise, walk, run — whatever keeps me from the seductive sedentary lifestyle that I’ve somehow fallen into. To remain healthy, an adult needs at least half an hour of moderate exercise a day; to get to a healthy weight, I need about 45 minutes each day. I also need to find some type of strength training exercise I don’t absolutely hate, because that’s important for my health, too.

HEAL. One of the things that has become abundantly clear to me over the past month is that most of my problems with permitting myself to put my own health and well-being first are centered on deeply embedded feelings of emptiness and worthlessness that I need to work through. I know what the cause is, and I know what I need to do to work on these things, but I know it will take time. I will continue my work with my therapist, and I also want to start a daily meditation practice — a more rigorous one than the 5-minutes-a-morning that I do right now.

CREATE. I have so many things I want to write! I want to work on books, continue my online writing, create amazing spaces in the home, and let my creative juices flow. I need to continue to make sure I make time for this every day.

PLAY. I need to take more time to just relax, goof off, spend time with family and friends, explore things, and be spontaneous. Playfulness is a major key to my personal happiness, and it needs to be a higher priority than it currently is.

I’m in the process of creating specific, quantifiable goals in these major focus areas, and I will post about those, soon. In the meantime, I definitely need to make sure that I’m spending time on each of these six items every single day. One day, maybe I will be like the awesome minimalists I read online, and I will be able to simply carry myself through each day, living in the moment, being purposeful, and naturally making the best decisions for myself, while keeping my boundaries in check. I think I have a lot of healing to do before I get to that point, however. Until then, I have tools, and I will use them. Hopefully, these tools will help me get to that place.

Comments are closed.