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A New Twist to your New Year's Resolutions

By Linda Sapadin, Ph.D

The New Year is traditionally a time that we attend to the tick of the clock, reflecting on the previous year, resolving to do better this coming year.

Most resolutions people make are repetitive. We're going to lose those extra pounds, exercise more, drink less, save money, be better organized, be more patient and spend more time with family and friends.

Wonderful ideas. So how come it takes you (if you're like most folks) about 7 to 10 days to fall off the wagon?

Are you just weak willed? Or could it be that something's wrong with your resolutions? It could, of course, be both. But let's see what happens if you were to create different types of resolutions. Here are my top 10...

  1. I am not perfect, not flawless, not faultless - yet I am good enough. Hence, I am worthy of love and respect (both from myself and others).
  2. I will acknowledge that I am a work in progress. I may not be everything I want to be, yet I can take pride in who I am right now. I will switch my negative narrative (I can't do this) to a positive one (but one thing I can do is …).
  3. I will remind myself that no matter how challenging my struggles are, I have much to be grateful for.
  4. When I feel vulnerable and lost, I will seek understanding and connection, rather than numbing myself with drugs, drink, alcohol, or food.
  5. I will appreciate the best in myself rather than comparing myself to others to notice how I fall short.
  6. I will feed my thirst for knowledge by being curious, learning more about what piques my interest.
  7. I will remind myself that there is no quick way through life's worst moments, but those moments won't be forever and I won't always feel so alone.
  8. I will do my best to respond to criticism with grace, generosity and goodwill as I learn yet another way that people can perceive things.
  9. I will scale back on all the things I believe I 'have to' do so that I make time for nurturing myself and those closest to me.

What do you think of these types of resolutions? I like them. Why? Because I believe that greater acceptance of self has the potential to create more meaningful changes than just focusing on your bad habits.

Copyright © 2013: Linda Sapadin, Ph.D
Linda is a psychologist and personal coach in private practice who specializes in helping people enrich their lives, enhance their relationships and overcome self-defeating patterns of behavior. For more information about her work, contact her by email or visit her website at PsychWisdom.

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