2016 Non Resolutions

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Happy 2016!

So I’m a little late to the punch on the New Year wishes around here, but better late than not at all, right?

For the past eight years now, instead of joining so many of the masses and making grand statements and lists of Resolutions, I’ve marched to my own drum and made up a list of Non Resolutions.  Okay, so you might say, “but isn’t that still a different kind of pressure, one that you were trying to avoid by making a list of things you claimed to do in the new year, by making a list of things you will try not to do?”  And yeah, it is kinda/sorta the same thing, but to me, the different spin on it seems to make a little more sense.  If I don’t win on one of my Non Resolutions, then for whatever reason, to me, it doesn’t seem like as much as a big fat fail as if I don’t accomplish a big ole’ regular Resolution.

You with me?

So, here I go again.  But before I make my little list of things I resolve not to do this year, I have to say that 2015 has been good to me, and to my loved ones.  I celebrated weddings and engagements with dear friends, welcomed new babies into the world with other friends, ran a handful of races, worked to make our new house feel more like a home over the past year we have lived here, drank some really good beers on sunny patios and decks throughout the warm months, traveled a little bit here and there, nurtured friendships and my relationship, delved deeper into a meditation practice, and most recently, 2015 was the year we made little baby M&M and shared the news that he or she will be making their debut May of this year.

It’s been a good year overall, with many highs and a few lows (to keep the balance in check over here seeing as how that is the theme of this blog and all).  I feel blessed and grateful for what has passed, and excited for what’s to come.

Without further blabbing on and on, here are my 2016 Non Resolutions (some have made the list eight years going strong)…

In 2016 I resolve not to:

  • Get sucked into worry.  Every year this one has made the list.  I know, deep down the vicious cycle of worry I can get myself wrapped up in if I let myself, and I know even more, so much of worry has to do with choice.  I can choose to dwell, or I can choose to try to just be, try to live in the moment and have faith, that things will all work out as they are meant to.  Easier said than done, 95% of the time for me, but it is still something I can continually work on.  And resolve NOT to get sucked into, over and over.  I’ll share my favorite quote by Michael J. Fox as I have done in past years…

“If you get caught up in the worst case scenario and it doesn’t happen, you’ve wasted your time. And if you are caught up in the worst case scenario and it does happen, you’ve lived it twice.” 

  • Let things pile up as much.  This includes, but isn’t limited to:  laundry, junk mail, worry (ahem), chores, and clothes I need to put away.
  • Interrupt.  Sometimes I don’t even realize I’m doing it, and truthfully, I do it more out of excitement rather than thinking what I have to say is better than what someone else is sharing.  It’s an annoying habit and it’s something I want to be better about (still- second year in a row for this one).
  • Think too much about what other people think.  (Unless it really counts.  Like it obviously matters what my boss thinks if I show up to work late every day.)  But other things- things like following my gut and being true to myself and then not overanalyzing what others think of my decisions.  This year I want to really embrace the mentality of being true to me, doing what’s best for me, and knowing in my heart that if that’s what’s ringing true to me, then what other people think shouldn’t matter.
  • Go a week without meditation, or yoga.  Both make me feel wonderful.  It’s lame to let a week go by without doing one or the other.  No excuses there.  It’s a must!
  • Go a week without exercise.  This one should be easy, as I can’t remember the last time this has happened anyway, but I know that with a little one on the way, excuses might come easy, but it will be a priority of mine to make some sort of movement on the regular.
  • Lastly, be so hard on myself.  (Again, a regular on the list.)  Life is tough, and it’s easy to be hard on ourselves.  I want to be kind to myself, as kind as I would be a dear friend.  Nicer self talk.  Less judgement.  More self compassion, less comparison.

I think that’s a good start.  Would you care to join me in sharing your Non Resolutions for 2016?

Believe Nothing

Agrees-With-Your-Own-ReasonI’m actually not even sure that this quote above is from Buddha.  Actually, I’m pretty sure it’s not from Buddha, which, kind of just defines the quote itself right?

From Buddha himself or not, I love this quote.  Because isn’t it true, that we’re kind of programmed in a way to be naive about certain things?  We read articles in magazines and pick up books off shelves at Barnes & Noble, and we believe what we are reading to be true.  We believe it to be true, especially if it resonates with us.

Say you’re trying to lose weight, and you hear a podcast on the “seven best diet tricks to shed those pounds!”  You’re pretty likely bound to believe that these tricks must be legit, but how do we really know?

I have a few co-workers who are often complaining about their weight, and this one co-worker perpetually is telling them that “carbs are bad!” and “you can’t eat a bagel, what are you thinking?!,” and these poor co-workers of mine who are trying to lose weight, they take this other co-worker’s advice as The Total Truth.  But come on.  Carbs aren’t the devil.  Bagels once in a while aren’t going to hinder your weight loss goals.  This is common sense, right?

I just find it interesting how, so often when we are looking for something, seeking out a tiny little nugget of advice or input, it can be so easy to take whatever we hear to be true.  Really, are you giving up the carbs because you know it to be the key to your success?  Does it agree with your own common sense?  With your own reason?

If it doesn’t- if something someone says or something you read somewhere feels a little off? Then you have every right to go ahead and say “screw it.”

Because the bottom line is, you don’t have to live by anyone else’s rules but your own.  At the end of the day, you need to be happy with your choices, and only you can know what the best choices for you are.  If it doesn’t feel right, if it doesn’t agree with your own reason, then who cares what expert (or co-worker!) said it.  Screw it.  Do you.  Follow your gut.  Go with what feels right.  Eat the bagel if you want to, and know that you aren’t doing a damn thing wrong when you do.

Do things that correlate with what you believe, and don’t feel like you have to follow anyone else’s “sage” advice.  At the end of the day, don’t you want to be comfortable in your own skin, with the choices that you’ve made, knowing you made decisions based on your own intuition and gut feeling?

(I’m fully aware that you may read this and very well say “screw this!” and move along. And thats the whole point, really.  (Not for you to say screw it and leave my blog forever.), but to take things with a grain of salt- if they speak to you and resonate with you, then roll with it.  If not so much, then that’s okay too.  It’s all about being true to you, and following your own inner voice, which, admittedly, can be difficult sometimes.)