I get really motivated at the start of a new year. I write out countless resolutions, write lists and schedules, subscribe to mailing lists, set alarms, join gyms and groups and buy books, gear and anything else I might need to get me on my way.
My resolutions for this year (many are repeats of last year’s resolutions):
- Read at least 1 book a month
- Quit smoking (this happened by accident, but I figured I’ll give it a shot)
- Pay attention to my appearance (I tend to be quite the bum)
- Get back into running and hopefully run a marathon by the end of the year
- Be productive and positive; at work and in general
- Try new things to broaden the limits of my comfort zone
January is always a high because I’ve started my new life and it’s going great and I’m unstoppable, but then (yes, there’s a but, come on now) something will happen that wasn’t on any of my lists, schedules or plans. So far this year, I’ve been down with the flu twice (I attribute this to my quitting smoking and getting back into the gym/running), my salary was delayed and a family member is scheduled for an operation (3rd one in under a year). These are the “bigger” things that have interrupted my new life, excluding the daily crap that work throws my way to ensure that I can’t get through one day without complaining.
BUT (get ready folks, I intend for this post to be a positive one) there are things that I have learned that are helping me work around and through these obstacles so that I can stay positive and productive (resolution #5).
Things I’ve learned:
(disclaimer: these things may be extremely obvious to some, but you’d be surprised how difficult they can be to apply)
- It’s OK to step outside the plan or change it up a little bit. Normally, I’d preach this to a friend in need and go on and on about the bright side of being spontaneous and “free”, but I am quite an expert in the field of beating myself up for my “failures”. Being able to shrug my shoulders and say “it’s OK, next time” has been one of the most liberating things I’ve learned to do – EVER. It’s still a work in progress, but I’m still working.
- People really don’t think about me as much as I think they do. Shocking, I know! But it’s nice to have that sort of calm. To not always worry what others are thinking. To allow myself to say what’s on my mind without wondering who might agree or disagree, like it, hate it or have any kind of opinion that oppresses my own. This is also a work in progress, some days are better than others.
- Don’t dwell on the past. Good or bad, it happened and finished. Learn from it and move on.
- The more you believe in something, the closer you will get to achieving it. This is not a reference to “The Secret” or any of that other positive energies situations, but more a matter of confidence and guts to take risks and know that you deserve the same success that everyone else does.
So two months in and I’ve read 41 pages of my new book, been to the gym a total of 5 or 6 times, went on 1 run, brought down my smoking to an average of 5 cigarettes a day and thrown myself into a few uncomfortable situations (professionally and socially). No bruises this far, so I think I’m doing alright. Trust that you’ll be getting updates along the way!