One week into the new year and there are people who have already given up on the things they had resolved to do, be or work on this year. I get it, you start out strong but for whatever reason are unable to do what you wanted to to the extent that you planned, so you quit. Welcome the first wave of new years failures. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Give yourself some grace.
I was going to use the first of the year to start another round of 100 days of 30 minutes of exercise. I mean it’s 30 minutes, everyone has time for that, I can do that, I will do that. Right?
Enter monster head cold, busy work week, terrible weather etc. I walked the first day and then just didn’t get it done the next couple. I could elaborate on my series of reasonable excuses, but instead I choose to focus on giving myself grace.
I don’t need to justify my inability to come out of the gates swinging to myself or an anonymous internet. What I do need to do is not let a couple days of trying to get better by taking it easy, derail my whole focus. This too shall pass. In the past I have beat myself up and powered through workouts, even when I’m on deaths door health wise, and in the long run burned out too soon.
Grace in the Christian faith has several definitions, it is the free and unmerited favor of God, and can also be defined as mercy, clemency or pardon. It is this definition I seek when trying to focus on myself. I will pardon myself from not straining to meet my own goals and resolutions to the standard I have set for myself, and with any luck, the sun will rise tomorrow, I will feel better, and I can once again pick up the challenge to better myself.
How about you? Are you all or nothing? Or can you give yourself some mercy too?
On new year’s eve, we celebrated the coming of 2018 kid style, with my children and nieces, ages 6, 5, 3, 2, and 2 with balloons, confetti poppers, “kid wine” and cake even though it wasn’t anyone’s birthday. All of the kids love singing happy birthday and blowing out candles, so at my nieces request, that is what we did. And we sang happy new year to the fictitious “Baby New Year”. This exercise seemed a little silly at the time but now 4 days into the new year when my resolutions have really had time to solidify in my mind, I think I am glad that we did, it signified a fresh start.
The Baby New Year or rebirth of the year is a great time to clear your mind and your plate of the past and refocus your energy towards the things that are most important to you. This year I am choosing themes to guide me along my Road to 100 challenge, they are “Grace” and “Self-care”. These are the goals I plan on reaching through themes of 100.
If you are the kind of person/mother/daughter/employee/friend that I am, this is a hard one for you. Giving yourself the same amount of grace you would grant a stranger can be challenging. I tend to be much more critical and hold higher expectations for myself than I do anyone else. This year, I will cut myself some slack. I will try to apologize unnecessarily less often (like when someone comes in my house and it’s a mess.) I will not beat myself up if in fact, I am not giving 100% to everything in my purview. I will be good enough for myself.
I know I am not alone in having shelved my personal needs in order to survive hard times. When the number one goal is to keep your ship sailing, the little things (like showers, sleep, diet and exercise) tend to fall by the wayside. It might be that I am thoroughly lodged in adulthood at this point, but years of putting myself last have finally caught up to me. This year, I will dedicate a little more energy toward making time (and money) available for the things I need as a person to be able to continue to sail the ship. Here’s to the goals; mind, body and spirit, striving for less stress and more fun.
Feel free to follow along and join me if you like, 2018 Baby, is going to be a good year!