I love New Year’s. The chance to start over, clean slate, yaddi yaddi. And, as with most things in my life, I set a list of impossible goals. A long list of all the ways I am going to fix me. As I wrote before, I am tired of this mentality. I want to continue to grow, I don’t need to be fixed. However, old habits are hard to break. I like lists and goals, they give me structure and stability. So I am working on creating healthy goals that have true intention behind them, instead of just being reactionary. Because I don’t just want to grow. I want to enjoy myself and my life. I want to live now, not when I become the perfect person. So here is what has been playing across my mind over the last few weeks.
Start Where I Am Seems pretty obvious but I constantly have to remind myself to be okay with where I am. I can’t start where I want to be, or where I think I should be. I can only be here right now. Here is a sum of all my experiences and my choices. So, if I am disappointed in myself for my weight or my lack of stamina, I also need to recognize the joy I experienced baking the cakes and eating them with my family. The times I chose to stay home and write, or spend time with my children and my husband instead of rushing out the door to exercise. This is my life, and it doesn’t always or even often compartmentalize. There is a long list of never ending chores and short time to be with my family and those I love. I’m here because of the decisions I made. But that means my future self will also be based on my choices. That’s a powerful thought. I can make different choices and change my starting point. Every day.
Control My Story This is something that I struggle with all the time. I allow others to define me and then I tend to stay in that box. It’s silly really, but also damaging. I can’t control what people say or do, or even how they choose to perceive me. So many times I don’t do things because I am worried about what people will think. Even joining Weight Watchers had me self conscious. Trying to live up to an idealized version of myself while also not allowing myself to grow out of the way I think others see me is so limiting and definitely unhealthy. It makes me sad and angry. I don’t want to walk around sad and angry all the time. Too often I have heard people tell my story and I don’t even recognize myself in it. I can’t control that. I understand that now. And even though I can’t control what others choose to believe about me, or the way they choose to portray me, I can control me. I know who I am. I know what I am about. I just have to continue to live it. Yes, growing and trying all the time and yes being happy with who I am. I like me. I think I’m funny as hell.
Look Forward, Reach Back I am really bad at accepting any type of help for anything. I see it as a weakness. That’s just foolish. I need help. Everyone does. So whether it is showing up for a Weight Watchers workshop or just asking for someone to help around the house I am determined to self advocate. It is okay if I don’t do it all. Not only should I not have to, but it really is impossible. And I can also help others. I’m not sure exactly what this looks like, but I do want to remember that it doesn’t have to be grand. I can add joy to people’s life whether it is through a kind word, or some action. I want to do something for someone else every single day. I am only setting this goal now, as I think of it. But I think it is a good goal.
Connect This is something I am notoriously horrible at doing. I do not form deep connections with people. I pull back and hide myself away. Some of this is because I am protecting myself, because I just don’t see myself as likable. The more connections I make, the more chance that feeling has to be validated. But then, maybe it also has the chance to be disproven. Not everyone is going to like me. I have to live with that. But if I am controlling my own story, at least for myself, then I might be able to do this. One thing I noticed is that when I do connect with others, I feel so much better. It is just a conversation, but it makes me feel somehow more human. Everyone needs to be seen.
So there it is. These are my resolutions that I am hoping to keep. In some ways I know that they are not great goals in that they will be hard to measure and put together some sort of action plan. Right now, to me they seem more important than lose thirty pounds or take a class. I think if I can get these down, the other stuff will follow.