Friday, 20 January 2012

January Resolutions

And so here we are again - another January in another year. 2012 is with us no matter how we feel about it and how are we all feeling about it?  Optimistic, enthusiastic, expectant, anxious, depressed or unhappy? 

I'm not one for roaring into the whole new year's resolution thing.  I think after Christmas you need time.  January can seem long and dark and is for many animals a time to hibernate, rest up and take it easy and yet us folk decide to go all gung ho and set ourselves new year's resolutions.  We decide that from the 1st January we shall be fitter, thinner, get a new job, train for a new career, start a new relationship or end a relationship.  Perhaps it's the year that we'll run that marathon, take a long road trip, volunteer, learn to play the piano or perhaps we are looking to embark on a journey of being different rather than doing different things.  Maybe it's a year for doing less, a time to find ways of relaxing and being still.  Perhaps we want to make a difference or be a better friend or act with more consideration to others.  Wow what a lot of choices we have.  Is it any wonder that it all seems hard to achieve and often new year's resolutions have fallen by the wayside by mid January or early February.

I'm not saying that having goals and things to aim for in life is wrong.  In fact I am a believer in it.  After all if you're not sure where your focus is, how will you get there?  But I do think that one of the key parts in setting your resolutions or goals or whatever you prefer to call them is to think about what you really want rather than what you should be doing or how you should be behaving.

A friend and I were discussing this matter earlier in January and she was telling me the things that she wanted to do this year.  Just hearing this change in semantics made it more interesting to me. I could do things I wanted to do this year, rather than feeling guilty about making decisions or choices around shoulds and coulds and maybes and if onlys. So instead of I should try and get a magazine article or story published this year, my list becomes: I want to get a magazine article or story published. Instead of if only I could be a stone and a half lighter this year, my goal becomes I want to be a stone and a half lighter this year. Somehow, this all feels more positive and less constrictive.  I feel there is less pressure and I don't have to feel guilty. 

Of course you will make your own decisions around how you set your own goals or resolutions but remember too that the clock chiming at midnight on new year's eve and a glass of celebratory bubbly is not the only time you can resolve to do or be something different.  Each and every morning brings a new beginning and the same choices to make changes are available to you.

Wishing you all the best for 2012 whatever choices you decide to make for yourself.


  1. Hi Angela
    Great post, very timely and intuitive!
    I have been resisting the urge to launch into setting targets/goals for myself this year, until January (with its dull days, dark nights and post-Christmas blues) is all but over. I agree, we shouldn't feel the need to only set goals at the 'stroke of midnight', 31st Dec! We need to feel able to do this at any time of the year.
    I also agree with you about aiming to do less and having time to just be still.... And how often do we celebrate what we already have/can already do? Sometimes the urge is to move forward constantly without living in the moment.
    Thought-provoking article :-)

  2. Hi Squaretwocoaching
    Thanks for your comments and good luck with your aims to do less and have time to be still. It seems that we can always find something to do to distract us from this aim. Also thank you for reminding me about celebrating what we already have achieved in terms of doing or being. How easy it is to move onto the next thing without taking the time to give ourselves a pat on the back. I find this happens a lot in industry too - always on to the next thing.
    Wishing you all the very best for 2012.