Have you ever thought about why we spend all of this time and energy to make resolutions and set goals? Ultimately, I believe we all do it to feel better, to be happier and to live a fuller life. As you work through your goals and resolutions for 2016, I want you to remember one simple piece of advice:
If you haven’t had the chance to read The Desire Map by Danielle Laporte, I highly recommend reading it before you finalize any of your goals for the year. The whole premise of The Desire Map is to set goals based on how you want feel. It is the most authentic and joyful way to set the tone for your year and your life.
So many of us set goals because we feel like we “have to” or that we “should”. This is seemingly fine until these trivial goals leave us feeling bitter and resentful. Or even worse, throwing in the towel on January 23rd.
I am sure many of us can relate to the woman in the excerpt below from Laporte’s, The Desire Map:
I once worked with an entertainment exec who prided herself on being disciplined. “I get up every morning at 6 a.m. to run,” she told me over dinner. “I hate it, but it needs to be done.” And she went on to explain that for Lent, she gave up swearing and hadn’t cussed in four years (“Even though it would feel sooo good to say just say the F-word sometimes!”). The following Lent, she swore off soda pop and hadn’t had so much as a sip for three years (“Even though a Coke with these tacos would be grrreat!”).
“Well, that sounds like a whole lotta fucking fun,” I said to her. And then I asked the waitress to bring me a Coke.
The woman in this story does not love to run. She doesn’t love the way running makes her feel, she doesn’t love the sense of accomplishment she feels once her run is over. She loves drinking ice cold Coke and cursing from time to time, but she doesn’t even allow herself those joys.
My best friend, on the other hand, ran a total of 475 miles in 2015. Like a freaking boss. The difference is that she didn’t complain about having to wake up and at certain time to get a run in, she didn’t constantly talk about how much she hated running, and she didn’t do it because she “had to”. She just ran. Ran because she loved it.
She ran because she cares about herself and her body, and likes the way it makes her feel. 2 miles here, 4 miles there, 1 mile at the gym, a 5k on a Sunday, 3 miles after a long day at work. And when a day rolled around that her body was tired, or her family wanted to watch football and eat nachos, she allowed herself to rest enjoy those simple pleasures because she knew that she could run again tomorrow.
I am sure there were plenty of moments where she had to convince herself to get running, or when the sun was too hot or the air was too cold, but she didn’t let a little opposition stop her from what she truly wanted. Running 475 miles in a year made her feel strong, happy, healthy and proud. She ran those miles out of love for herself, not out of hatred for her body. And that my friends, makes all the difference.
So, whatever goals you decide to set for yourself this year, whatever resolution you make, make sure it is coming from a place of joy and love for yourself. No goal is too big or too small. No resolution too simple or outrageous. What matters most is that what you resolve to do makes you better, happier and more fulfilled.Happy 2016!