How to Make an Anti-Resolution for 2016
New Year, New You!
Ugh. How many times have we seen that heading before: “New Year, New You!” For about two weeks now, I’ve been listening to advertisements promising all sorts of delights and benefits specifically aimed at this idea:
Last year was horrible. And that this year is somehow going to be different… IF you buy [insert product here].
It’s an effective marketing technique for sure. There probably isn’t a gym in America that isn’t packed with people promising to do better this year. And while I was more than content to let the New Year come and go without much excitement around the thought of resolutions, I stumbled across an idea that actually got me thinking, and I wanted to share it with you.
You know, I used to have a friend who would say ever year that his New Year’s Resolution was to stop making New Year’s Resolutions… and so when I first read the phrase “Anti-Resolution” I couldn’t resist rolling my eyes recalling this friend’s statement. As I read, however, I realized this was not the same thing. (Admittedly, I cannot recall where I first heard of this idea. So I apologize to whoever came up with it for the omission). An Anti-Resolution isn’t a statement against self-improvement, or against making goals for the year. Rather it’s about setting a different sort of goal — a goal of release. The Anti-Resolution asks you to think of something that you don’t want to bring forward with you into the New Year. It asks that you sort through your personal baggage (don’t worry, everyone’s got some) and toss out things that no longer serve you.
Need an Example?
Anti-Resolution #1: I am no longer going to let other people’s opinions of me control me. What they think of me is their problem, not mine.
Anti-Resolution #2: I am going to stop comparing myself to that one Mom at the school drop off who always looks like a runway model at 7am. It hasn’t really inspired me to work on me. It just makes me feel crappy early in the morning. Besides, I like my yoga pants dammit!
Anti-Resolution #3: I have a goal I’d like to work on this year. But I want to stop shaming myself when things don’t go quite right. I’d like to try enjoying the journey.
So what do you think? Is an Anti-Resolution something you would consider trying this year? We’ve had a lot of great discussion about this concept in my circles this past week. I’d love if you’d contribute your own thoughts to the mix. Leave your Anti-Resolution in the comments, or connect with me on Facebook or Twitter! Don’t forget to include #AntiRes2016
Oops! I Almost Forgot!
I almost forgot that I promised to tell you what my Anti-Resolution is going to be for 2016!
In 2016, I am leaving behind putting other people on pedestals.
People are people. The best of them are talented, passionate, and a variety of other attributes that are worthy of our respect, our appreciation, and in certain contexts, our love. And yet they are people. Not idols, not gods, not infallible beings of any sort.
Looking at it now in black and white text, it seems so simple. And yet, I sometimes catch myself forgetting this lesson. I don’t think I’m alone in this.
Sometimes we meet someone who seems farther along on the journey we’d like to be on, and instead of realizing that we’re catching that person several years or even decades into their path, we’re tempted to compare ourselves — to look at them and say, “Oh I could never do/be that….” or “I’ll never be as good as…”
A client recently shared a wonderful quote that I’m happy to pass along here: “Don’t judge my story based on the chapter you walked in on.”
As I reflect on this Anti-Resolution, I realize this quote fits with a slight modification:[bctt tweet=”Don’t judge your story by the chapter you walked in on in mine.”]
So there you have it. How to make an Anti-Resolution!
What’s that? It’s several days into the new year already? Well, I suppose you could wait until next year to start.
But honestly? Why not start right now?