I have never been a fan of New Year's Resolutions, but there is something about taking an end of the year time out from the usual busyness of life combined with a fresh year before me that makes me think of things that I would like to do better and how to accomplish them. Things like decluttering and organizing, keeping the house cleaner, flossing my teeth more.
I know, that last one is riveting.
I don't know, maybe that actually is making a New Year's Resolution. It doesn't feel that way to me though.
I guess that is because when I think of the New Year's Resolution concept, I think of big changes, big goals. It can be exciting, exhilarating even, a new transformation to look forward to (on second thought, maybe flossing more actually does qualify for a New Year's Resolution).
New Year's Resolutions often involve weight loss, or a new big fitness plan, or eliminating sugar, or sodas, or gluten, or processed foods, or wine (seriously??!!) completely from the diet. We don't seem happy unless it involves changes that are drastic. I mean, big changes in ourselves require big changes in what we do right?
Well maybe, for a few months anyway.
And then we remember that we actually like chocolate, or pasta, or glass of cab. We remember that - oh ya, I actually don't like chaining myself to an elliptical or treadmill in the gym 6 days a week. Or life happens and our 6 days a week that we committed to turns into 4 days or 2 days or miss a week and we figure we aren't really accomplishing anything.
So we eat a doughnut or we actually enjoy a break from the workout grind and we figure we have messed it up and we are off the wagon so to heck with it. Or our body is so relieved that we actually listened to it after weeks or months of deprivation, that it is like a dam breaking and before we know it, we have fully integrated doughnuts into our diet as a major food group and we haven't so much as broken a sweat in 3 months.
This is why I don't like big New Year's Resolutions.
Being healthier, feeling better, it doesn't have to be drastic, it doesn't have to be all or nothing. I would argue that drastic is a sure fire way to make sure that you are not still doing what you set out to do months later.
This year I propose no restriction, no elimination. See what happens when you focus on adding instead of taking away. What would happen if you ate vegetables with lunch more often or added fruit in as an afternoon snack? Maybe you know your diet is more limited and you are in a rut or you have wondered what the big deal is with quinoa - try a new food or recipe once or twice a month. Eating out a lot and want to change that? Pick one more day a week to cook then you did before. Do you set out on a new workout plan every year only to peter out? Instead of making working out so many days a week a goal, make trying something new until you find something that you actually like a goal. Despite what they say on TV, it is actually ok for us to participate in movement that we enjoy and we are way more likely to move because we like it and it makes us feel good then just to burn off 'x' number of calories.
This year, let's change our attitude towards food and movement. This year, add something that makes you feel good.
What I'm saying is, instead of New Year New You, how about New Year New 'Tude?