Resolutions? Not Today.

Saguaro — cc photo by J. Delp

Wait? Is today the day we are supposed to start working on resolutions and new goals?

I’ve decided that I am giving myself permission not to start anything ambitious today, or probably even tomorrow. You don’t need it, but I’ll give you permission too. Put off whatever you might have planned, consider a new resolution “start date,” or just resolve to be a little kinder to yourself (and others) this new year. You’re probably already dealing with quite a bit.

There are certainly things I want to learn/do/accomplish in the coming days. I have way too much stuff and could use a good decluttering. I’d like to become better at photography and maybe pick up a new creative outlet. I need to eat healthier foods and it would be nice to do more hiking. Writing frequently is also on my list of things to do.

So, I do have some ambitions, I’m just not all that concerned about starting today — as in January 1, 2021. I feel like my plate is already pretty full, and I just have a few more days of vacation.

I used to get caught up in the “new year’s” resolutions thing, but I’ve never been very successful at it. If it works for you, I certainly don’t think there is anything wrong with it. However, just remember that you can decide to make positive changes, take up a new hobby, take better care of yourself — or anything else, for that matter — any day of the year. Today, tomorrow, next week, next month. Just start when you are ready.

Jefferson Bethke — in his book, To Hell With The Hustle, writes:

We as humans are the summation of our repeated practices and rituals. Humans aren’t made. We are formed.

Who are we becoming through the practices we are doing? And, can we create or point ourselves in toward certain practices that make use the fuller, richer, more anchored humans we are meant to be.

Jefferson Bethke, To Hell With The Hustle

I like this idea. It’s not about having a concrete end point, but doing the things that lead you down the path to where you want to be. In my case, it’s about becoming the type of person who…

…owns less stuff.

…takes better pictures.

…eats healthier.

…writes frequently.

…goes hiking.

John Spencer recently posted a couple of articles about what he calls process goals (A Different Way to Set Goals for the New Year), and maintenance goals (A Different Type of New Year’s Resolution). I found both to be very helpful as I think about what I want to accomplish in the days ahead. So, if you are like me, and having a hard time getting started, take time to read through them and watch the videos he created.

However, just remember, it doesn’t have to be today.

When you are ready.

I give you permission.

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