Forget About New Year's Resolutions
You’ve had a hard enough year already! So this year, instead of beating yourself up for how much you weigh, how many vegetables you eat, how often you exercise or why you haven’t gotten that promotion yet, how about if you take some time and make an inventory of all that you've accomplished in the past year? Instead of pushing yourself harder, blaming, shaming or judging, you could actually offer yourself some acknowledgment, some compassion and maybe even some praise.
I know this sounds radical. How are you supposed to grow, get any better at anything, or meet your goals if you don’t push yourself and set even higher goals every year? Well, did you know that the research actually shows that self-compassion, supportive encouragement and understanding are just as important to success as setting all those “SMART” goals you’ve read about? And most people give up on their resolutions within a few weeks anyway.
So here’s my challenge for you --- on New Years Day set aside 10 minutes to make a list of all the things you are proud of yourself for doing this past year. Maybe you're proud of finally learning how to cook a few new dishes, or you're impressed by how well you've managed to keep in touch with your friends despite social distancing restrictions. Or maybe, you can give yourself some credit for meeting most of your work goals, despite the lack of structure and support you would have gotten if you were actually in the office. I’m certain you’ve done hard things this past year and now is your chance to take a moment and celebrate yourself. You survived! And now you can harness all the strengths and the resilience you demonstrated and apply them to this next year ahead. You've got this!
Happy New Year!
Written by: Erin Olivo, PhD