Resolutions-Yay and Nay

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I think there are two kinds of people:  Those who make New Years Resolutions and those who don’t.  Well, there probably is a third, but they don’t care at all and so aren’t reading this so let’s not talk about them behind their backs.  It’s rude.  If you are one of the first two kinds of people then pick the column that applies to you and Happy New Year.

New Years Resolutions?  YES!

If you are like me you love the notion of fresh starts.  New beginnings.  Clean sheets on the bed.  The new car smell.  All that stuff.  So if, like me, you love the idea of a totally new and better you and or life in the next 12 months, here is how to get started.

List five important values you hold; the things that make life worth living, or create the feeling of a life well lived and have meaning for you.  (Just a reminder, these ‘values’ aren’t moral rights and wrongs.  Just to be clear, money is not a value, but money can facilitate you living something you value.)

Three of my Values for 2010

Fiscal responsibility

Gratitude

My family

From this list, I create the list of what these values mean in practical terms.  I’m defining them a bit more.   Notice that there is some ‘doing’ here, but also some things I’m committing to ‘be’.  I.e. I will be someone who connects, or someone who is grateful for example.

My Values for 2010 more defined

Fiscal responsibility means I will be noticing whether or not I’m living within my means

Living in gratitude means I will be noticing and expressing my thanks.

Family means connecting to my husband and children more.

Get even more practical-What will I DO to live that value in 2010

Fiscal Responsibility

I’m making a list of my current personal debt and constructing a thermometer chart so I can see the progress in paying it off.

Gratitude

I will have cards in my desk at the ready to write thank you notes for extraordinary service, kindnesses received and thoughtful gestures I see every week.

My Family

Finally acknowledging that cleaning the house together isn’t our ‘special’ time to bond, and instituting a game night.

It is that easy.  List what matters to you.  List what it means in a more personal way.  Choose one small step to honor that value more fully in 2010.

Ta Da!  You have just changed the quality of your life.

New Years Resolutions?  BAH!  HUMBUG!

If you are like me you have a pretty good sense that New Years Resolutions are strictly for smokers and the Jenny Craig followers.  Oh yeah, and your local gym also makes out like a bandit selling year long memberships that people only use until the third week in January.  Sound familiar?  Like you, I’ve made many more resolutions than I ever kept.  They are always along the lines of being healthy and kicking a bad habit  and they are set up for failure from day one.  Why?  Because I think I should want to change these things, but the truth is, I really don’t want to change them at all.

So what do we Resolution nay sayers do at this goody two shoes time of year that makes us cringe apart from add another shot of baileys to our coffee?

We stand up and say proudly-Change what?  I have a GREAT LIFE!

That’s right.  You made this life and you love it.  So New Years is a great time to sing the praises of what totally rocks in your life.  Why focus on that half empty glass of egg nogg on the mantle?  Look at what is overflowing in your cup!

Take time this New Year to truly toast, celebrate and give a shout out to your personal highlight reel.

How to do it

Open up your calendar-electronic or otherwise and go back over the last twelve months.  Notice what was great.

Some of my Highlights of 2010

Ariadne auf Naxos with Calgary Opera.  Roomed with my bestest friend who I hadn’t seen in years.  We now talk monthly or more.

Celebrate-Old Friends who are still the Best Friends

Disneyland with the Kids.  Best holiday ever for us.  We laughed and laughed on Space Mountain.  It was a riot riding rides and screaming.  Adored it.

Celebrate-Learned we need to take another holiday this year at an amusement park.  Perfect family holiday for us.

Diner Breakfasts.  I love diner breakfasts and managed to get us all out for a few.  Even one where we read silly poetry to each other.

Celebrate-bacon, sausage and whipped cream on Belgian waffles.

I have more, but you get the idea.   If you write this list down it is a great tonic for the days in mid March when you think your life sucks.  It isn’t about winning the million, it is about the every day world we enter and share with those around us.  So Bah and Humbug to change!  I had everything I needed last year, and I have faith that I will bring many of these experiences back for a repeat performance this year.

Happy New Years to One and All!

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