Usually when the clock turns midnight on December 31, it’s fun and exciting because we’re rolling over to a new year. It’s a chance to reset and refresh, and step forward into something new. Going from 2019 to 2020 feels more special, because we’re also entering a new decade.
In this blog post, I invite you to consider New Year’s resolutions about health while reflecting on both the last decade and the next. I’ll also share two powerful questions that I’ve been working with in the last year that have helped me shift my mindset about my goals. I think they’ll help you, too.
In the Power of Purpose course I teach, we look at seven areas of life – health, relationships, finance, career, education (personal development), recreation, and service. While you can create resolutions in all areas, for the moment let’s focus on health and start with the first powerful question.
What do you want?
Truly, I mean you. Not what someone else wants for you, not what you see on a screen, not what someone thinks you should be doing for your health.
Ask yourself what you want for your health. This could be a variety of things.
Do you want more sleep or less? Do you wake up feeling refreshed?
Do you want to eat and drink differently? How is your intake of caffeine, sugar, carbs, tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, and other substances? Is it where you want it? How about food – are you eating things that nourish you?
Bodies want movement. Do you want to be stronger, more flexible, or have more stamina? What movement would make your body happy? Maybe it’s time to try something new – something that has been niggling at the back of your mind that you might like to do someday. What is it? T’ai Chi, Zumba, rock climbing, golf? Perhaps it is just a renewed commitment to walk your dog everyday (s/he would be happy, too!).
What about injuries? Are you keeping up with your stretches and exercises?
Then, let’s look at stress and mood. What do you want for yourself to help cope with life’s ups and downs? Would you like to do some conscious breathing or meditation? Do you want more sunshine on these cold winter days? Do you want to try something like journaling, coloring or singing?
You may want to take a few moments right now to jot down some of the things you want for your health in 2020 and beyond. Go ahead – I’ll wait.
Before we go on to the second powerful question, I want to share some water cooler wisdom from one of my former co-workers. I honestly don’t remember how we got on the topic, but we were discussing health. She made an observation that has stuck with me ever since. She said, “You know, it’s easy to gain five pounds a year and you don’t really notice, but then 10 years later, you’re 50 pounds heavier!”
Haven’t we all done things like that with our health? We just let little things slide and much later we wonder what happened. How is your health different than in 2010? What do you want for the wonderful vessel that is your body in 2030?
Now, let’s get to the second powerful question. It is one that we ask in the Power of Purpose and one that I have been asking myself regularly in the last year. It’s been a way for me to get real with myself about creating what I want. Are you ready for it?
What will it take?
For example: what will it take for me to eat five servings of fruits and vegetables every day? What will it take to be able to do 10 pushups? What will it take for me to get started on meditation? Use it as a prompt whenever you need to.
You may want to take a minute now and ask, “What will it take _______ ?” about one of the wants you already identified.
Taking the time to think about New Year’s resolutions is a way for us to refocus and decide what is important. Doing more of this kind of reflection will give you the energy to make the changes you want. If you want to be with a supportive group of people who are motivated to be their best selves in 2020, then consider joining us for six weeks of the Power of Purpose in January and February. Whether you are able to join us or not, best wishes to you for a happy and healthy New Year and New Decade!