As the end of the year rolls around, the concept of New Year's resolutions begin to float around my mind. The thought of changing some things in my life, once and for all, teases my adult brain into thinking this could be it! This could be the year I get my eating under control, the year I train for a marathon, and the year I stop raising my voice at my kids...
The thought process starts with the tingly temptation to start the New Year off with a clean slate. With goals, ambitions, and a solid to-do list, it really is appealing. But in reality, deep down, I know that it will end up the same way as previous years – a few weeks in, all resolutions will have slipped way down the list of priorities, and a level of personal guilt and inadequacy will replace the enthusiasm and gusto with which you started out the year.
Why do we do this to ourselves? Why do we add this extra layer of pressure onto our already maxed-out selves, on top of the never-ending responsibilities that we undertake as parents? Don't we have enough on our plates? No matter what kind of woman or mom you are, regardless of all the commitments you have in your daily life, aren't New Year's resolutions just setting us up for self-inflicted failure?
Enough is enough. How about in 2018, we try something new and let go of resolutions all together? No more lists of things we want to achieve but just haven't yet, no more unrealistic expectations setting us up to ultimately feel bad about ourselves. Instead, let's change things up - call it a shift in mindset. In the New Year, when faced with making decisions or prioritizing things in your already-busy lives, simply ask yourself one question: "Is this good for ME?"
If the answer is an honest yes – and it really suits you, benefits you, and makes your life better - then do it, prioritize it and make it happen! There is something about being a mom, a woman, a wife, a daughter and a friend that's gotten us all caught up in doing things for other people. We do it so much that we think it's what we want, but most times it's what others want. Let's rewrite that script and put ourselves as the leading characters for a change...
So, the next time you think you need to host a dinner party for all those friends you owe an invitation to, ask yourself if this is something YOU really want to do. If you are considering signing up for the latest fitness class that's all the rage, take a moment and think if it's a workout that will suit YOU and your lifestyle. And when your kids say they want chicken fingers for dinner, but it entails you running out to the grocery store (which isn't part of your plan for the day), just say no and feed them what suits YOU.
These might be simplified examples, but the underlying premise is the same. Give yourself the gift of prioritizing yourself, doing what suits you, making your life a little less hectic and reducing that mom guilt just a tad. Focus on this one mindset change for the coming year and make it a way of life. Let's raise a glass of whatever YOU are drinking and cheers to a happy and healthy New Year for all!