Getting a bit tired of all the “new year, new you/what will you do this year to make it great?” flim-flam? Yup, me too. It’s really tough to build a brand new habit, give something up, turn 180 degrees when it’s cold outside, the mornings are dark and the evenings are long, isn’t it? No wonder our new year resolutions peter out before January does.
The whole new year resolution thing is often shoved in our faces like an extension of the crazy Christmas peer pressure. Everywhere you go, it seems as though everyone’s doing something fantastic, new, exciting and life-changing, and you feel under pressure to do likewise, but you just don’t feel excited or inspired to do anything. You try to think of something and you can’t. You look around at everyone else and think they’re succeeding where you’re not. So you end up feeling demoralised and demotivated. Well, I’ve got good news, and here it is: You don’t have to do anything new! There. I’ve said it. I’ve given you permission.
We all know how January feels after all the festive build-up and excitement. It’s a bit dull, a bit cold, a bit dark. Of course you need something to brighten and lighten the days before Spring kicks in. So here are my suggestions:
Think about what has always worked well for you.
You may have ditched some good habits in the run-up to Christmas: healthy eating, exercise, regular, sensible bedtimes, a hobby you love, a regular contact with someone special. Now that your daily routine is getting back to normal, which of these good habits could you reinstate? Remember: you’ve done them before, and they’ve worked well, so it’ll be easy to start them up again.
Think about what you need.
What’s missing at the moment, and how could you take a step towards making that happen? Excitement? Stability? Calm? Motivation? By the way, never underestimate the power and comfort you get from being with other people, in all kinds of situations. Connect to others. Talk to people. And listen. Really listen.
Think about what you want.
It might be something big and bold, but here’s the thing: it doesn’t have to be. Sometimes, the small changes are the ones that make the greatest impact. What could you change right now, as a starting point to get yourself where you want to be? Look around your current environment. What could be different?
This is where you need to be resolute: determined, purposeful, firm, undaunted, unwavering. Only you can make it happen. Own your impact. Be resolute in what you decide to do, and then do it.
And when it gets tough and you need to talk it though, you know where I am…