In my last post on December 21 I mentioned a decision I made several years ago to have New Years’ aspirations instead of resolutions. I explained that I think aspirations are connected with your higher self; whereas, resolutions often seem to be based on “shoulds”.
I didn’t have a good start to 2014 and I didn’t give any thought to aspirations for the first couple of weeks. I was fighting off some kind of bug – not really sick but not feeling great either – and trying to shake off the post holiday blues. Definitely not in touch with my higher self! The emotional and the physical were feeding off each other so I followed my usual regimen of Echinacea, extra vitamin C and lots of sleep. The beginning of January is always a blah time for me but, at least here in Florida the weather is nice and that usually helps to lift my spirits. When I lived in the northeast the January blues would sometimes drag on until March!
I was glad to say good-bye to January but, unfortunately, the funky mood followed me into February. My creative energy was completely blocked – I didn’t draw or write. So what does a life coach do when she needs a life coach? You’ll be glad to know that I follow my own advice. One of my best-selling greeting cards says “Just put one foot in front of the other … and you’ll end up where you’re meant to be” and that is one of my basic philosophies. I believe action equals power so, no matter how little motivation I have, I continue to go for walks with Mom & Stella, go to my yoga class, volunteer at the ranch and get together with friends. I seek books and movies that inspire me. I especially enjoy biographies of inspirational people and I’m currently reading “Thomas Jefferson: The Art of Power” by Jon Meacham and “When Character Was King: A Story of Ronald Reagan” by Peggy Noonan. I purposely look for things that make me laugh – I started re-watching episodes of “Frasier” and I recently discovered Jerry Seinfeld’s “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee”. Maybe most importantly, I remember to thank God every day for all the blessings I have been given.
When I finally got around to thinking about my aspirations for 2014 it occurred to me they are mostly internal; things that no one would notice. Sure, every January I aspire to lose 10 lbs but, other than that, my aspirations are all connected to my personal growth and wouldn’t be apparent to anyone but me. In years past I made resolutions related to weight loss and improving physical fitness, career achievements, financial gains, finding “Mr. Right”, etc. My opinion of myself is no longer related to achieving goals and, although retiring from the working world contributed to that change, I know it started long before. I know that growing older and understanding what really matters to me is what changed my resolutions into aspirations. I aspire to be a kinder, more understanding and forgiving person – not only to others but also to myself. I aspire to spend my time doing things that are meaningful to me. I aspire to worry less and enjoy more. I aspire to continue strengthening my faith and gratitude. Give some thought to the difference – resolutions set you up for stress, failure and self-criticism while aspirations bring you closer to your highest self.
Living happily ever after is only possible on a day to day basis.