When the New Year hits, everybody has their list of resolutions. The older I get and the better I understand myself, the more I realize that specific, lofty goals don't sit well with me. Or maybe it's that I don't create a detailed plan of action to attain that goal and follow through. Here are just a few examples:
Lose X amount of weight
This goal is usually thrown out the window come February. I get so fixated on my diet and become so strict on daily visits to the gym that shortly following, I explode. AKA I throw in the towel and go back to my old habits. And to top it off, my husband, who is a personal trainer and could call the gym his second home, will regularly stick to his salmon-only dinners and hit the gym for cardio and weights twice a day. I think to myself, I want his will power and motivation...oh well, guess I'll watch this Long Island Medium marathon and eat more chocolate. FAIL.
I log onto FaceBook and see all my friends hopping from place to place. The east coast, the west coast, another country. It really does sound lovely. But let's be realistic. In order to have the funds, I gotta work. And if I'm at work, I ain't travelin'.
Work with 2 new clients/month
If I'm solely focusing on the quantity, am I providing quality? Probably not...at least not all of the time. I found that I was stressing so much about scheduling and making ends meet financially that I had a difficult time enjoying my job.
My goal for 2014? To be more mindful.
The dictionary defines "mindful" as attentive, aware, or careful. Being more mindful in all areas of my life is a very feasible goal. Instead of negative self-talk about my figure, my work load, or my boring 'ole Indiana life...I will put things in a more positive light. I'll be more mindful of my strengths, my limits, and of those around me. I'll do what I can, with what I have, exactly where I'm at.
I will be more mindful of:
It's pretty often that 5pm rolls around and I've got a pounding headache and no energy. You know why? Because at that point in time, I realize I've had 2 cups of coffee, 2 cups of water, a yogurt, and maybe a banana. This is not good. Will someone slap me and remind me that I will die if I don't provide myself with nutrients and WATER?! In 2014, I vow to pay attention to my nutrition, and there will always be a cup of water on my desk.
I cannot go to the gym today because:
A) I didn't get enough sleep
B) I didn't pack a gym bag the night before
C) the house is a mess!
The answer is D) All of the above...because I am an excuse maker! THERE, I SAID IT! I feel like this could only get worse, especially if we throw kids in the mix one day. So, in 2014 I promise to take better care of myself. I'll let those dishes pile up and leave the laundry wrinkly if that means 30 minutes of cardio. Or better yet, I'll make...I mean ask... my husband do it ;)
As a birth and postpartum doula and childbirth educator, I know that evidence-based information is key. I understand that every family is unique and what works for some folks won't work for others. My goal for 2014 is to become more aware of the information that's out there (both good and bad), become better at active listening and brainstorming, and be a better advocate for families. Okay, so that's more than just being mindful, but you gotta start somewhere!
My internet usage
It's so silly...but it's so true! It's a love/hate thing when it comes to me and social media. I love FaceBook...I could scroll through my news feed for hours, browsing through various articles, memes, photos, you name it. That being said, it is a TOTAL time suck. I could be doing so many other things! This past October, I decided to deactivate my account and didn't log back on for 2 months. I do believe that my time away from FaceBook helped me separate my *actual* world from cyber world. Letting go wasn't as hard as I thought it be, and in fact, I kind of enjoyed it. Not exactly an "off the grid" status, but it allowed me time to focus on what really mattered. It will be okay if I never saw photos of your fabulous wedding or adorable baby or that time the temp went into the negatives (wink, wink).
So, I may still post photos of my dinner (sorry), create a status gushing over the best day ever, or share a number of parenting articles, but I will do it with discretion in 2014. I promise!
The love I receive
Damn, it feels good to feel cared for, doesn't it? I realize that I take that feeling for granted every single day. In 2014, I promise to appreciate kind words and thoughtful gestures. I will express my gratitude, give hugs, and tell my mom I love her more often. I will also make more phone calls and write more letters, rather than emailing, texting, or sending a FaceBook message.
The energy I put out there
I may not live by the "YOLO" motto, but you only get one life. I hope that in 2014, I will gain more knowledge, meet some new people, pick up a new hobby, and experience new things. And I'll do what I can, with what I have, exactly where I'm at....'cause it's a good place to be.