A New Take on New Years' Resolutions - South Eastern Therapy Clinic


The New Year is an interesting time of year isn’t it?

Each year around this time, we are prompted to reflect over what has been in the past year, as well as look to the future; all of our goals, plans and aspirations. And then of course, there are the resolutions. The strange paradox that with the turn of a page – the turn of a calendar year, we will somehow correct all of those burdensome habits that have held us back in the past, creating a new and healthy lifestyle that will become the ‘new me’.
How many times have you said to yourself, this year I will “lose weight and get fit” or “stop smoking” or whatever aspect of your life that you’re not satisfied with. For many, the New Year brings with it feelings of hope, positivity and possibility.

However, we all know that more often than not, it is a matter of weeks, if not days before you ‘fall off the wagon’. We’ve all been there. In fact you may even be sitting there as you read this right now, commiserating a 2017 that is already not quite what you want it to be.

Anyone who has ever seen me as a client (or really, even knows me on a personal level!) knows that one of my cardinal rules of living, is to throw away the ‘all or nothing’ or ‘black and white thinking’ which so often leads to the undoing of resolutions that are made at this time of year.

The problem with New Year’s resolutions is that we often make them without full consideration as to whether or not these expectations or goals are based on our reality. What I mean by this, is that when we decide to make change in our life – change can go from being mildly uncomfortable to sometimes downright impossible, depending on what it is. In addition, it takes time to form new habits and rewire your brain to new ways of thinking, feeling and behaving.

So it is a good idea to ask yourself these questions:

– Am I ready to make myself uncomfortable in order to create this change?

– Am I ready to see my life through a different lens in order to make change?

– How important is this change and how will my life be different as a result of it?

And the most important question:

– Do I have all of the skills, tools and resources to make this change, or do I need to ask for support?

If you don’t ask yourself these questions, you risk setting yourself up for failure. And why would you want to do that?

What I suggest to you is this.

Make 2017 the year where you don’t set yourself up for failure. Make 2017 the year where you make a plan. A realistic and achievable plan that has forethought, actionable steps and measurable goals along the way. A plan that includes a system where you are left feeling rewarded and full of confidence and esteem, each time you achieve the next mini-goal.

I think that sometimes we fall in to the trap of thinking that one day we will be ‘done’. That if we somehow ‘just’ do this or ‘just’ do that, we will be perfect and then we will be done. Fixed. But this kind of thinking is a fallacy and only leads to more disappointment. You are never done. You are always a work in progress, and actually, you are perfect as you are right now.

The only day that you have is today, and the only year that you have is this one. So let’s say welcome to the year 2017 and make this year, the year where you truly begin to love and accept yourself as you are, putting realistic goals in place which set you up to feel fantastic.