Its about this time every year that we start to hear the buzz of New Year’s resolutions. We start to feel the pressure to make a change in our lives, quit that bad habit, drop those extra pounds, but research says that only 8% of people actually follow through and achieve our resolutions. Ouch! Why even bother?! Here’s some inspiration:
Writer Anne Lamont says, “…what if you wake up some day, and you’re 65, or 75, and you never got your memoir or novel written; or you didn’t go swimming in the warm pools and oceans all those years because your thighs were jiggly and you had a nice big comfortable tummy; or you were just so strung out on perfectionism and people-pleasing that you forgot to have a big juicy creative life, or imagination and radical silliness and staring off into space like when you were a kid? It’s going to break your heart. Don’t let this happen.”
I think that once that clock counts down and we shift into that brand new year, we expect change to happen overnight. We give our resolutions as shot for a little while, but when we don’t see results right away, we throw them out the window. This is where we go wrong. Have we set these goals for ourselves because we really and truly want them? Or because everybody else is doing it? We have to get really clear on that and set resolutions that align with our most authentic desires. Change can only happen if its attempted with regular practice (abhyasa) in combination with non-attachment to the results (vairagya). The Yoga Sutra 1.14 says that when practice is done for a long time, without a break, and with sincere devotion, then the practice becomes a firmly rooted, stable and solid foundation. This sutra can be interpreted also to apply to our goals off the mat. This means that resolutions can only be achieved if you show up little by little, everyday, over time, with continued effort.
Its easy be hard on yourself when you make a commitment to a resolution. It’s inevitable that we’ll have those days when we fall off the wagon and when we do, its important to practice gentleness and kindness towards yourself. Ask yourself, “how can I be gentle with myself as I show up for myself today?”. Once that resolution is in place, bite it off little by little. Integrate new habits one at a time and be patient with yourself. Change is possible, we just can’t be attached to it.
When you’re making your resolution, get clear on exactly what it is you want. What we want wants us too! What is it you’d like to invite into your life? Be specific. When we are specific and committed to what we want, the universe recognizes us as a good investment. Allow yourself to be pulled in the direction of your vision and adjust your life to live in alignment with your vision. Are you having relationships, doing work, spending time doing things that activate more love peace and joy in your life? If you do that, then you are living more congruent. Live an intentional life. Live it on purpose!
So what goals are you working toward in your life? When you imagine reaching your goals, what does your life look like? Visualization is one of the most powerful mind exercises that you can do. Vision boards are simple, yet powerful tools that you can use to help you start creating the life your heart desires. They can help you clarify your goals and focus your dreams!
If you’re interested in creating a vision board of your own to get clear on your resolution, join me
on Saturday, January 14th
for an Intention Setting & Vision Board Workshop
at Yoga in the Heights! In this workshop, you will use the power of visualization to create a beautiful collage that represents a clear intention of what you want to manifest in your life. We’ll hang out for a crafty afternoon of intention setting, guided relaxation, and homemade chai! All you need is a pair of scissors and your creative spirit! All other materials will be provided. Hope to see you there.