New Year’s Resolutions

New Year’s resolutions have become a bittersweet tradition.  Resolutions, themselves, aren’t a bad thing.  It’s the pressure we place on ourselves and the unrealistic expectation we have for monstrous goals (ex: I’m going to lose 50 pounds, become vegan, and earn double my income all within the first month!).

“Resolution” is no longer a word that serves us.  Life is a constant rebirth of new intentions and identities.  Life is meant to be much more than setting goals.  Instead, look at the New Year as a way to assess where you’re at and where you want to be. What do you want to accomplish this year? What kind person do you want to become?  What’s the best way to support yourself in making it happen?  I wish we would assess ourselves and our lives like this more often.  Monthly, even weekly.

Live with Intention

Becoming the person you want and creating a life you love requires constant awareness and PURPOSEFUL intention and thought.  I moved to Los Angeles (to work in music) fresh out of high school not knowing a single soul.  Still, I had a vision of where I wanted to be, set goals accordingly and constantly reflected on my actions.  I was able to get an incredible music job within a year.  Not saying these were the only things to make this possible.  It’s just a personal experience I’ve had with setting my mind to something and achieving it 🙂

Awareness and purposeful intention will probably sound overwhelming for some of you.  To that I say “You don’t have the right goal”.  I’ve certainly had the wrong goals which didn’t incite passion or were too overzealous.  On the other hand, I’ve created goals which have made me feel so on fire nothing would stop me.  The “goal” or path to take became abundantly clear when a vision for my future connected so perfectly with who I was.

The beautiful thing, too, is your vision for the future is yours to create.  There’s no need to feel pressure to have astronomical, life shattering ideas to compete with those who want to be billionaires or entrepreneurs.  Who do you want to be? What kind of life would make you extremely happy?  Answer these questions free from influence or guilt.  Make this an honest, soul searching moment.

For me, I created a vision of a healthy, peaceful, happy me.  I see myself in a clutter free, joyful home.  Strong and fit which creates a centered, peaceful feeling.  Wearing simple, well fitted clothing.  You get the idea.  After reflection, I’ve written down the daily actions or habits which will foster and support my vision.  I feel really good about it and can’t wait to begin!

3 Tools To Support Your Vision

In addition to creating an image in your head then working backwards, invest in the tools which will help you succeed.  For 2017, I’ve armed myself with three tools that will help me achieve the life I want. I have faith these will help you tremendously too. Most importantly are the habits and mental beliefs that will form as a result of using these three things. It’s best to have good habits and routines in place. There will be bumps along the way. But I know that by setting a strong foundation something great will happen no matter what. Here’s what I’ll be using starting January 1st:

2017 Day Designer in green palm pattern

1. Day Designer – my biggest goal, for the year, is to improve my time management. Each day we get is a GIFT.  I want to make sure every second has value. No more aimless, reactionary living. Even if I allow myself free time it’ll be from a purposeful, intention filled place. Once I realized how precious and valuable my time is that’s when my desire to make it count happened. Day Designer is something I used last year and loved it. Although I had months where I didn’t use it, when I did, life was tremendously brighter. This planner is crafted to help you get your to-dos down and has you focus on only 3 a day. This has been awesomely helpful in relieving pressure and stopped me from feeling overwhelmed. The inspirational quotes, beautiful design and amazing community surrounding this product (on Instagram) makes it a must have.

The Five Minute Journal from Intelligent Change
2. The 5 Minute Journal – life is typically lived too fast and we often feel disconnected from ourselves and the world around us.  The 5 Minute Journal aims to fix this by helping you focus on gratitude.  A couple weeks ago, I prayed to know how to become more connected and present in the new year. The next day at church a friend saw my journal (I take notes hehe) and said “For some reason I feel like I need to tell you about the 5 Minute Journal. I heard about it on a radio show and thought it sounded amazing.” Talk about a tender mercy right?  I immediately looked it up and wow. What an answer to prayer. Tim Ferris sings it praises and just the day before I bought his new book. It was meant to be.  I cant wait to dive into this and see how much of a difference it makes.

3. Morning pages –  In the famous book “The Artist’s Way: A Spiritual Path to Higher Creativity” there’s an exercise where you write three stream of consciousness pages each morning and don’t look at them again (or at least for a while). It’s a creative dump and MANY successful people do these everyday (Tony Robbins does it to write the anxieties he’s feeling every morning). I’ve done it and immediately felt like there was more space inside my heart. My creativity often bloomed afterwards. I want to make a habit out of this and see what happens.

Life is about more than resolutions. Really take inventory of your life, where you want to be and what it will take to get there. You’re the artist for your greatest continuing masterpiece.  I know it seems daunting or overwhelming but I promise you. If you sit down once and take an hour or two of your day you’ll be thankful for a lifetime. Caring enough about your future and happiness is the best thing you can do for yourself and everyone else. It takes just as much work to not care and go through the motions as it does to be aware and intentional. I’d rather be responsible for my happiness and create the life I want. Sure it’s a lot of work up front but eventually my life (and who I am) will be where I want.

Don’t be one of those people who realize too late the beauty of living intentionally. Start now. It can be as simple as drinking 2 more glasses of water a day or reading an extra 30 minutes. You can do that. Easy. Yet the effects of doing those small changes will snowball into big ones :). As the New Year approaches make a life long resolution to yourself to make your quality of life better.  I hope this year is even better than the last ?