The First 30 Days of the New Year are not about taking action or making things happen on a crazy schedule.
The following are TIPS for making this year different and rewarding. Take steps to feel alive again, look at life differently and make necessary changes.
1) Downplay January, up-play every month
Make this New Year one where January is not the be-all and end-all month for making changes and resolutions. We all make January and the New Year a big deal. The New Year creates a lot of pressure for goal setting, changing habits, and making resolutions, such as dropping 50 pounds, finding the soul mate, or writing that book. Other than society’s pressure to meet goals, there is no difference in starting something, or pursuing a change on January 1 or March 11th. We emphasize success and change too much in this first month of change. Instead, we must allow ourselves to disconnect from this impossible goal. There are millions of people who achieved changes, dreams, goals, and not that many would say they successfully started on January 1st!
2) Change every day, not just at the start of the New Year
Make this year one where we implement change everyday. The 1st of January can be any day of your life.. The body and mind don’t like quick change. Sudden changes very rarely last- little daily changes result very often in big changes over time. We must allow the process of change to happen by being gentle and patient.
3) Start without knowing everything
Start the year by not thinking about change. Start with no fixed, impossible deadline or pre-set plan. We all wish and dream of change–in all areas of life and many of us don’t do anything about it. We have too many failed experiences or we cling to excuses It’s OK not to know how the journey will go, or to not have all the information. Lets just start, commit to change and be open to all sorts of help from people, books, ideas, and unexpected synchronicities that will come our way.
4) Deciding and believing this time
Make this New Year one where we decide to change and believe we can. It takes a decision and believing in yourself. If any part of you doesn’t believe you can make change, your ego will sabotage any effort, resist the change, and show you countless examples of why and what isn’t working Eventually you will give up. Your belief in it being achievable must be strong to counteract what is familiar for the body and mind. Eventually, the mind and ego get on your side and help you, but only when it’s clear who is in control, and who is strongest.
5) Remember how powerful and intelligent you are
Make this New Year one where we remember how powerful we are. We don’t need anyone or any book to tell us what to do. We have an infinite source of wisdom and a very strong, and, often ignored, intuition. Make this year about connecting to that part of ourselves that is intelligent, knows what is right, knows the way, and knows what we need to do.. It’s the part of us that never changes, even in a world where everything seems to be changing. Let’s take the time to be still and listen to our inner voice this year. Make this year be about finding yourself again and reattaching yourself to your core — your highest and best self.
6) Question things
Make this year one where we allow ourselves to question our lives. What do we eat? Do we love our job? What do we believe about the world? Do we like where we live? What were we taught when we were younger that today doesn’t seem quite right? Are we in the right relationship? Are we in the right church and do we need to be in one? Are we full of love or full of fear? Sometimes the way we live our life, our fears, who we are with, are not really our choices, but those of our friends, our parents, our religion. Lets question our beliefs, even if something appears fixed and permanent in our minds, like death. Go ahead, lets ask some different questions!
7) Allow change in, stop resisting it
Make this a year where we allow change into our life however bad it may seem. Very often it’s the resisting that is painful, as on the other side of a change is often a gift and beautiful lesson. A lot of what we fear in change is temporary. Be open to everything and attached to nothing and see what happens.
8) Balance taking action and letting go
Make this year about balancing action, making things happen, being determined, and hard working It is also about surrendering, letting go, giving some space for the unexpected, the unplanned, and the invisible to occur. The more we believe in this other order of help, the more we can invite it into our life. We always have free choice but we have not been open or willing to accept help from outside sources. Lets learn to trust more — good things will and can come our way.
9) Become more aware
Make this year one where we are more awake observant, and aware of ourselves, our reactions, our feelings, our beliefs, and what’s working and what’s not. Step back from our busy lives and notice things: why we think a certain way, why we like a certain person, why we are in a certain job, why we live in a certain place, why we are angry at certain people, and why we resist a certain change so much. Make this a year where we take control of our life, and our choices. Put yourself back in the picture and take a front seat to your life.
10) Take a big risk, do one thing that is really uncomfortable
Make this a year of taking a big risk and doing something uncomfortable, such as forgiving someone and getting back in touch with them, telling someone you love them going abroad, reading new books changing careers, taking some time off, saying what you really mean and not what’s acceptable, telling the truth more, moving, getting divorced and knowing everyone will be happier in the end, inviting an ageing parent to live with you, admitting a secret that has been weighing you down with guilt, trying alternative health methods, letting go of being in control, meditating and asking bigger spiritual questions, being alone for a while, dealing with an issue or an addiction…the list goes on. The one that is right for you is screaming at you in your head. Give it a microphone
11) Have a goal or resolution for someone else too
Include other people in this year’s resolutions. Too many of us have a long list of goals that we too often repeat next New Year’s. To turn this habit around, think of a few goals that involve other people, such as helping a parent, volunteering or helping someone lose weight. We have gifts, talents, and experiences that plenty of people can learn from. We are all connected at some level, and if you help someone else, you always help yourself in return. If you hurt someone else, you will feel hurt and pain as well. The reward of focusing on someone else is often hidden with gifts for ourselves. We meet someone, we learn something new, we get an idea, we feel more joyful, we are offered a new job, or we create friendships. We can lead ourselves to new experiences and change by helping others.
12) Be kind to yourself everyday about something
Become our own friends. We are in a permanent state of attack against ourselves and we look for our missteps during the day– bad food we ate, mistakes made at work, etc. We need to stop this vicious cycle. We do what we can in an ordinary day. That’s it. Take a moment to focus on what you did right, what you can be thankful for, what you did that you didn’t really want to do, what you learned, or what you didn’t eat. Being kind to yourself has even been shown to be good for the immune system, as your body isn’t under a constant state of fear and worry.
13) Stop trying to be perfect
We are all trying to have it all, be it all, and look it all — we all want to be perfect and have the perfect life. Then we feel guilty when we don’t. We have addictions, problems, obesity, debt problems because we think we will never measure up to others. Let’s remember this year, that no one has the perfect life- everyone has something they think is missing in their life, Instead, focus on making progress, growing, learning something new, moving forward, trying something new, reading a book, and having momentum. If you feel like you are learning and growing, you will feel like you are making progress. You will start feeling in integrity with yourself.
14) Forgive yourself
No one succeeds the first time. No one succeeds everyday. No one does it all perfectly. Lighten up the load you have on yourself.
Why are goals and resolutions important?
We get what we focus on. If we know where we are trying to get, most of the time, we get there! Too many of us just roll into the next year without thinking about what we want to change or how to be different in our lives. We just expect more of the same. The brain likes to know what it needs to do and what it needs to focus on. There is real power in knowing what we want, having a goal, and having a roadmap.
There are many different types of goals and resolutions, such as losing 20 pounds, or completing my novel. It can also be a simple statement of a feeling or a few words, such as “feel more joy” or “feel more grateful”. It can be as simple as establishing positive daily rituals.
It’s important to concentrate not only on what we want or even how we are going to get there, but why we want to meet this goal. What is what is the result we want? The brain needs to know why. You will always find a way when your reasons for change are big enough.
Try writing down your goals in a places that you see everyday. There is power in writing things down, there is power in reminders, there is power in wanting to manifest something new in your life and keeping energy focused in a particular direction.
You get to choose what you want to create this year. Knowing that you have this power, and knowing that having a goal and doing a little bit everyday or every week will get you closer, is the first step in the first 30 days of pursuing a dream, a goal, a New Year’s resolution.
Why do people give up? What are the typical obstacles that get in the way of someone changing?
People give up or don’t change for many reasons. Some of the reasons include:
* Comparing themselves to others. This creates pain and many think they won’t measure up or meet their goal.
* Having impossible deadlines or goals that are too big.
* Not knowing where to start or having a plan.
* Underestimating themselves and their individual power. Many let limiting beliefs take the place of their self-confidence.
* Not having a strong need for change.
* Making excuses, such as lack of time or money
* Having previous failures and wallowing in negative references from the past.
* Expecting perfect and immediate results.
Which one of these may be holding back your goal or your New Year’s resolution?
What helps someone change?
* Don’t compare yourself to anyone. You are you, and you will make your path through this change, and through this year.
* Break down your goal into small achievable steps.
* Have a plan, any plan. It is less about picking the perfect plan than about choosing one.
* Give yourself time and forget about unreasonable time schedules. It’s better to achieve your goal in a year than not at all.
* Remind yourself how intelligent you, your body and your brain is Start believing in yourself
* Listen to your intuition about why something is not working
* If something isn’t working, change something, but don’t just stop completely
* Give yourself an empowering reason why you want this New Year’s resolution: what will it cost you if you don’t, how will you feel if you succeed, who will benefit, and what rewards you will obtain.
* Develop an excuse buster by writing down your common excuses and determine how many times you let them take over your life and your choices.
* Take each day as a new day to start. Leave the past where it belongs. Everyday is a new opportunity, regardless of how many times you tried something before.
* Be kinder to yourself, and don’t beat yourself up if you make a mistake. Be your number one coach and cheerleader and watch your transformation.
* Surround yourself with people that support you. You need to be in an environment that is on your side.
Why is it so hard to keep New Year’s resolutions?
January is a very high-pressure month, as there are many things happening in all areas of our lives after the holidays. It’s also the time of year we want to make a big change or start a resolution. If we don’t succeed in the first few days, weeks, we think we’ve failed….again, year after year.
We need to downplay January and up-play every other month. It doesn’t matter when you start, when you get back on track. Lighten up the January load. Change a bit everyday and you will get much closer to what it is you want.
We all want to be perfect and get it right this time. We hope this year will be different- then its not. That doesn’t feel good. We then hurt ourselves by believing and saying harsh things to our own selves and our brain gives up. It doesn’t feel it can win.
Why are the first 30 days important?
The “First 30 Days” is a metaphor for the beginning stages of any change. The first few days are always the hardest. Your body and mind need to be told and understand what’s involved in this change what will be different, why is this change happening, what’s in it for them, what’s the pleasure component if you succeed. You will decide how you react when you don’t succeed the first time round and during hard times or when another emotion takes you off track. If you can get through the first few weeks of a change, you start seeing and knowing that you will make it — you will embrace this change.
Science has shown that it takes about 28 days to make a change or develop a habit. The brain literally creates new wiring based on new information it is getting from actions and beliefs you are adopting. Believing you can change and then deciding you can and will are major steps on the way to change.
As the Hindu Proverb says:
” When we take one step toward God,
He takes seven steps towards us”
We simply need to start, take that first step, trust that we are guided and life will help us along the way.