2017 is a new year. January is on the calendar and it always seems to ask the question “how do I want to improve myself this year, how can I make life better for myself and my loved ones. A certain evaluation process is usually calling.
Or, at the other end of the continuum, “how can I stop suffering, ruminating, having regret, you fill in the blank.”
It’s an interesting stimulus that we deal with every year as the calendar ticks up one number. I always wondered why it seemed to be such a chore. I stopped making them because it didn’t feel authentic. New Year’s Resolutions seem like the Hallmark version of self-improvement.
But that didn’t seem to work either, because I felt compelled to improve my life. It’s difficult to escape the nudge because we hear about New Years Resolutions, talk about it, and blog about it (here, for example!)
If everyone is buzzing about making resolutions and many of us make them, it seems natural to be swept along into thinking along these lines.
This quote from Walter Lippmann, an American journalist and political commentator offers a contrast:
Where all think alike, no one thinks very much.
I love this because it brings me back to an awareness of myself as I am right now without obligations born out of a duty to conform….
In Alexander speak, there is a wonderful phrase that I often use in my lessons with students that gets to the root of mindfulness and the means to change something that doesn’t work anymore.
“We are setting up the conditions whereby the right thing does itself”
Living in this moment fully is setting up conditions whereby authenticity reins and habit, conditioning and limiting thoughts fall away.
So, for 2017 my goal is not to specifically work on anything, e.g. stop chewing gum, reacting habitually to a trigger, tensing up, or any number of other list detailing changes I think I should make.
My goal is to take my advice to others and embrace the organic, habit reducing, free breathing condition, that will be the fundamental basis of all the other stuff I want to change.
And Happy New Year!!
Please share your ideas about NYR’s. What works, what doesn’t work. Or maybe you ignore them………
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