Each year as the clock strikes midnight in our respective timezones, millions are prepared to abide by whatever resolution deemed necessary for their personal growth. Most often I hear resolutions based upon the idea that something should be given up. Something that is normally attached to a physical craving such as cigarettes, sweets, sex, etc. I tend to cringe at the perception many people have about resolutions. As many times, they are viewed as an oath made, that once broken seems to no longer be of importance for the balance of the year. But how does one dispose of something supposedly so vital to their growth? And then wait until the next year to start over again? Hmm.....I don't know, but the crazy thing is I've done it myself. So I stopped placing so much importance on resolutions years ago. Afterall a resolution is simply a decision to do something. The action that follows is what gives it value. Therefore the promises we make to ourselves should factor in the possibility of failure IF we presume to believe at 12:01 am on January 1, 20xx, we will never again - smoke, drink, or curse - eat pork, beef or candy - have or participate in lustful thoughts or actions, and so on.
When reassessed regularly, I've found my energies are better utilized setting goals and objectives throughout the year, just as I do for my students. So with that being said, I have considered all the things I hope for and placed them in 4 core concepts for personal growth that I attempt to work on regularly.
1. Improve My Overall Health and Wellness
Last year, I managed to continue working on improving my eating habits and although I stopped going to the gym mid-year, I did get in some alternative ways to work out. My asthma is under control and it doesn't look like I have to go through another surgery for the fibroids. YAY!! So this year, I'm going to get back in the habit of cooking. I'm sure a few of you have something to say....but as I've stated before I can cook-I choose not too. But this time I'm aiming for healthier meals, not the ones I cooked for the ex-hubby & the manchild that had us all gaining more than we should have :). Add to that- those belly dancing classes I've been talking about, and more rock climbing and other outdoor activities. Bottom line -I gotta be like Nike, and Just Do IT!
2. Improve My Finances and Savings
This one did not go so well for 2009. I stepped backwards due to my unscheduled vacation :), but not so far that I can't rebound. Although, I have a considerable chunk missing for the next few months due to the prorate on my contract, I will still be able to pay off my car in the next few months. Which I will continue to drive because I hear it rides much better without a car note! Taking that into consideration, I have implemented a budget that works well and will have me positioned to save even more when my new contract starts. So I will be able to add investing (outside of what my job offers) to this list. Plus I'm planning to move in the next couple of months and I am learning to be more disciplined then I have ever been before.
3. Improve my Spiritual Growth and Giving
If you know me, than you already know my church history (Ex-husband is a minister, Ex-mother-in-law was my Pastor (really still is), I served wherever I needed to, etc) I still find it difficult to find a church HOME, but I did manage to find a place that I love to attend on occasion that welcomes all beliefs and the core is still bible-based. And although, I still find it difficult to regain that level of committment to a building, I've grown in the areas of giving. Which was one of the things I desired to do more of. This year I want to continue in giving more of my time and resources, but I also plan to invest more time in learning about other religions....especially those that divide us. It may not be considered as spiritual growth to some, but I believe to learn and respect another's belief system and take the time to try and find aspects to appreciate aids in spiritual growth, especially in the area of loving each other.
4. Improve My Relationship With Self
I'm still struggling with the practice of placing everyone else's feelings, problems, and needs before my own. I think my largest hurdle was holding onto my son, which I've managed to cross over. I've said before that I have been a friend to some who are not even friends to themselves which tends to leave me in a funk and torn. But I've recently discovered that part of my problem is romanticizing a situation instead of taking it at face value and moving on. Therefore, I have to continue to work on doing those things that allow me to love and enjoy me. In dealing with others, I can and will accept them where they are but I must and will be true to what I want and need. By continuing to improve my relationship with self, I'm ready to move in the direction of fully working on a relationship with someone else.
Note: Goals should be attainable. They should be within reach, so as not to be a road to disappointment. I realize that some of my goals don't have a definitive action or measure. That's by design. My goals are ongoing, as learning is life long. Until the next time.....journey light.
Luv, peace, and an abundance of blessings,