It is hard to believe that we already finished the first quarter of this year.
Most of us make a New Year’s resolution or choose a word that should guide them through the year. Three months later it’s time to reflect how we are doing so far. Did you stick to your resolution of eating healthier, exercising every day, going to bed earlier?
My plan was to meditate every day for 30 minutes. Half an hour is not a lot of time to carve out of the day and yet, I fail to do it on a regular basis. I have deadlines to meet, I’m too tired, I need to take care of a sick family member… The events of everyday life had a higher priority. Consequently, I omitted my daily meditation practice occasionally, but eventually I abandoned it altogether.
My guess is that I’m not the only one who didn’t follow through with the resolution.
So why do we even set a New Year’s resolution? Because we know it is a goal worth pursuing.
We know that obesity causes all sorts of health problems and losing weight will make us feel better, look better, and have a better outlook for our personal future. Exercising will not only help with weight loss, but it also results in the release of endorphins. These chemicals in the brain reduce the perception of pain. In addition, they trigger a positive feeling in the body. Sleeping an adequate amount of time allows us to feel more rested and resilient to the stress we face.
If you neglected your resolution you don’t need to wait for the next New Year to start again. Start today! Maybe your goal was too ambitious and eating healthy as often as possible is more reasonable. If going to the gym every day is not doable go 3 times a week and on the other days go for a brisk walk in the neighborhood. Scale back what you had initially intended to do until your efforts turn into a habit, then expand them. Hang a monthly calendar on a visible place and every time you follow through with your resolution reward yourself with a star. I know it sounds like grade school, but it’s working!
As for me, I decided to meditate whenever I find time for it. Sometimes it’s only 10 minutes before I am too tired and need to go to bed. When the weather is nice I stop at a park on my way to work and do a walking meditation. At times, all I can do is a mindfulness exercise. The point is that small steps still take me in the right direction. Or as Confucius stated: “It does not matter how slowly you go as long as you do not stop.”
Wishing you a wonderful week with renewed energy for your resolution!