A real resolution requires a new compass

New Year’s Resolutions. Yuck. If weight loss tops your list, then you’re in good company. Fleetingly hopeful, mostly depressed, self-critical company.

The dread you feel is your flight-or-fight response getting ready to kick in, and neither a green tea-stimulated purge of your kitchen cabinets nor a week-long “Survivor” program with Boot Camp Bobby will be effective or healthy in the long run.

Carve an inspiring path for yourself instead. Here’s how.

#1: Avoid Making Resolutions–of Any Kind

The Merriam-Webster definition of “resolution” is the “act or process of re-solving,” or “solving again.” When you make a resolution, you’re implying to yourself that:

  1. you’ve failed at something in the past
  2. you are, or an aspect of your life is, currently a problem that needs to be fixed, contained, or firmly buttoned down—and as quickly as possible
  3. it’s unlikely to last, since this is at least the first do-over

Dreadful, indeed.

Instead, Declare Your Vision

Fast-forward to the end of next year. How do you see yourself? Not: What have you accomplished? but rather what is the overall sense or quality of your life? In this case, I don’t want you to just consider your weight or fitness. Embrace the vast expanse of what you want your experiences to be.

What words come to mind? Freedom? Joy? Balance? Abundance? Connection? Is there an overall theme that strikes a chord with you?

Decide now that is who you will be this year. Make a declaration, a powerful promise that you will speak forth into being through concentrated and committed action.

As an example, my declaration for 2011 is Creativity. I am committed to creating freshness in my own healthy eating and activity, rediscovering my writing voice (that’s why I’ve already started to blog more regularly), and initiating business partnerships.

You, too, get to reinvent yourself this year, using your declaration as the catalyst for planning specific monthly, weekly, and daily commitments. Choose to only do something if it advances your vision.

The best part is you can’t mess up because, as humans, we are already divinely creative, free, connected, etc. We’re simply training our lives toward our God-given potential day in and day out.

How exciting is that?

Continued in next post: How to Make Your Health Commitments Stick