Hey there! Here’s to Your 2013!
Time to recycle all those good intentions from January 1st last year and have another go! … or have you got some new intentions, you’re gonna take for a test drive?
Maybe you play it safe and don’t bother at all?
That way you have nothing to lose – right?
I have to admit I’m not very good at making ‘specific‘ new years resolutions. I just like to hope that the new year will be a better one and an improvement on the last one. Not just for me, but for all those special to me, or who touch my life in one way or another. That way when extra great things happen along the way, it’s a bonus.
I think there is enough stress in life, and as Maya Angelou so eloquently said “I did then what I knew how to do. Now that I know better, I do better.” Over the years this has become my mantra, or ‘forgiveness prayer‘. It stops me beating myself up, so that I can fully live in the present, dust myself off and go forward. I’ve learned a lot this year about ‘mindfulness’. (For more on mindfulness click here).
In other words we can only build from what we know or experience. So if you’re feeling a little battered and worn by the year that has just gone (and I know a lot of us are), and need a little inspiration to go forward into your new year with your chin up, take heart from Maya’s words. Don’t kick yourself anymore for where you hoped you’d be, or who you thought you’d be because of a promise you made to yourself this time last new year. Instead, look at the glass half full and look at what you have achieved and at how you arrived at today still intact and didn’t let ‘life’ kick your butt. Sure you may be a little worse for wear, but you’re still here, and you’re doing your best with what you have right now! That’s what’s important.
I heard a long time ago (from someone whose name escapes me) to learn that life is like white water rafting. As long as I think of life this way, I can accept the twists and turns better. There will be rough water following smooth. Whirlpools, waterfalls, white water, tranquil water. I may lose something or someone in it’s torrents along the way. Hit debris and river banks or get stuck behind boulders. Sometimes I’ll go under and not know if I’ll swim back up. Maybe I’ll need to grab some drift-wood along the way to help me get through another rough patch, but that’s ok. It doesn’t mean I’ve failed, it means I’ve learned how to ask for help, recognise when I’m not coping and know that calmer waters will return eventually as long as I just hang on and breath. It may sound simplistic when in the midst of darkness to hear that sunshine will always follow rain, but this is life. This is nature. We are human, it’s ok. Recognise that life can’t always be about plain sailing, we’d learn nothing about ourselves and we’d have nothing to offer others in need or know how to empathise if we didn’t feel pain ourselves.
At this point I’d personally like to acknowledge my family and friends and some wonderful new acquaintances I’ve met along the way who have helped inspire this post. I’ve had my tough days, and they too have had theirs. Such is the dance of give and take. Together we got through.
Personally, I feel like I’m going through massive changes myself. Funny how you can just feel pages turning in the chapters of your life sometimes. So if I’m going to pledge anything for my new year intentions, it is to replace old habits with new ones. Rattle my cage and reinvent some traditions. Do a lot of things differently. I also want to be more mindful of every moment, good or bad, because I know that experiences are what we grow from. It’s how we deal with those experiences that shape us, and help us cope with similar challenges and opportunities in the future.
If you need a bit more inspiration allow me to share with you a You Tube video that recently crossed my path. It’s about Ben Davis and what inspired his ‘Do Life‘ campaign. Sure, your goal may not be weight loss in the literal sense, but weight = burden, and whether your burden be too much physical stuff cluttering your life; too much emotional baggage; not enough time for enjoying life; not enough cash-flow; grief or loss; inertia; addiction; indecision; discontentment; stress; a fear or whatever, it can feel like you’re dragging a heavy load around with you every day, and yes it can feel like ‘running a marathon’. I love his Forest Gump approach to not only solving his battle with weight, but the way he kept focussed on the big goal, while chopping away at the small ones, while en-route discovering other things about himself along the way. These are ‘the bonuses’ I spoke about earlier.
Happy new year every one!