Thursday, January 06, 2011

My new year's resolution is to not make any resolutions

It's January 6th. I suppose I should be at a gym somewhere burning off holiday calories or making to do lists for the rest of my life. But I am instead drinking coffee under a fuzzy blanket at 10:45 am on a Thursday. Oh, the life of a yoga teacher.

January is a strange time of year: the holidays are, for most of us, stressful in one sense or another: we see family. We don't see family. We see our partner's family. We eat too much. We drink too much. We rest too much. We work too much. It's a time of pure indulgence for some and struggling to get through it for others. Usually our bodies end up mad at us for some reason or another.

And just because it's the beginning of January doesn't mean it's any warmer or brighter than it was two weeks ago: I'm starting to think the coldest and darkest season of the year is NOT the best time to be making huge life decisions.

Especially since so many of us make these extreme New Year's Resolutions that essentially say: this is the year I give up chocolate/booze/sugar/fun! I will be a whole new person, this is the year to do it! Everything will change....NOW!

I think we should reevaluate this masochistic "holiday" for a moment here. How about we give ourselves a break? Ease back into the new routine slowly, rest a little, eat good food, and take the pressure off? Life is stressful enough, why add more to it unnecessarily? The spring is a much more reasonable time to be taking on big tasks. There's SUN at that time.

My New Year's Resolution is to be easier on myself. Hence coffee and fuzzy blankets at 10:45am. I am proud of that.

And I have a suggestion. What if we stopped all this wheel spinning for a moment, closed our eyes, and asked our bodies what their New Year's resolution would be? Setting aside for a moment shame or guilt or judgment, honestly listen: if your body could talk, what would it say? Would the intentions of your gut, your hips, your lower back or shoulderblades be the same as the one you made in your mind?

The new moon was just the other day--write down this gut intention and do your best to follow it, just until the full moon waxes. Remember: it's okay to make mistakes: if it doesn't work out, you probably learned something, and another cycle is always on its way. A year may be a little too big to peer into; one cycle of the moon sounds a lot more reasonable.

And of course you can do it. Look what you've already done.

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