How do you approach New Year’s resolutions?
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I have mixed emotions about New Year’s resolutions. I am a planner by nature, and I like the sense of control. I would like to say that I sit down with a cup of coffee on January 1st and spend time thinking about my goals. Too often, however, I find myself emotionally exhausted after the rush and excitement of the holidays and the concentrated effort at work (…this is the busiest time of the year for emergency departments!). The month of December is consumed by preparing, shopping, cooking, baking, celebrating and, sometimes, cleaning; living too little energy left to really get into the job of planning a WHOLE year.
I was struck by the post that MJ placed on Facebook from Working Daughter and I did muster enough energy to read their notes from 2016 and 2017. Such great information.
For me, trying to make resolutions for a year is too daunting. There are too many things that change over 12 months, many of which seem completely beyond my control. I aim to make first quarter - ‘winter resolutions’ – for me this seems much more manageable. Although I recognize that some of these goals may be long term ones, I sill choose to take a smaller bite, at least to get started. I did accomplish some mundane but important ‘routine’ tasks this Fall. In my mind, Fall is for paperwork! I reviewed important documents, updating “Just in Case Files”, shredding old paperwork and sorting. I made a list of important files that needed to be updated (…Wills…sigh). But now it is time to a bit of a break. The month of January is free for some introspection and reflection – where have I been, where am I going, and where am I being dragged. I resolve this quarter to be flexible with my time. To ensure I preserve a bit of each day for my own priorities – not a lot of time – perhaps enough for a walk outside – a run – or a cup of coffee and some time reading. I resolve to be more aware of my daily health - to be active daily even if that simply means taking the stairs instead of the elevator or escalator. I resolve to eat a healthier treat even when I am grabbing a quick meal alone. I resolve to be kinder to myself and others, to accept that not everything has to be perfect (…although many times it will need to be….). And I resolve to get the Wills done…
How do you approach New Year’s resolutions, especially when dealing with all the competing demands – and joys – in your life? What are you going to do?
MJ – how do you approach the New Year?
MJ: As I’m sure is the case for most of you, my Facebook feed has been full over the past couple of weeks with New Year’s resolutions, and requests to post the ‘one word’ that describes how you will make 2018 year different or what you want to achieve.
To be frank, some of the words people choose likely work well for them, but they don’t resonate with me: badass, kill, dominate, annihilate, crush, control. I tend to favour words of renewal and calm. Boring, perhaps. Uneventful, even better! How about: connection, creativity, curiosity. Or exploration, energy or generosity.
Let’s give ourselves grace, to appreciate ourselves and those around us. Find a kind word or act, strike up a conversation with someone you think you have nothing in common with. Put health and wellbeing first, and finding inner strength to do the many things we are tasked with, find some joy along the way. If you are not ready for a full fitness overhaul, make a few simple changes: drink more water, cut sugar intake, and create a better sleep routine by winding down the electronics an hour ahead (or banning them from your sleeping space altogether). Pick one major task to cross off your list, like reviewing your insurance needs or getting wills and powers of attorneys in place. All of these create peace of mind, which is a step to overall well-being.
Maybe this can be a year where we each step away from a longstanding commitment that has run its course, or invest in someone else stepping into a role we’ve held. A year where we are accountable to ourselves, but lift some of the pressures that we have allowed to become routine.
Julie & MJ
P.S. Look for notes in March to see what Spring 2018 has in store…..
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