Happy New Year! Each year as I hang up the new calendar, I always do so with a mix of emotions. I’m a bit nostalgic for the years gone by, sad that the holidays have past, grateful for the time spent with family and friends, and excited for what the new year will bring. This year though, I especially find myself struggling to focus my attention on the present rather than looking with longing at the years gone by.
I’m not sure if it’s the fact that because with it being 2017 it means that I will celebrate one of those big birthdays with a zero after the number this year, or if it’s because the years somehow seem to be going by faster and faster, or maybe it’s just that with our future being more uncertain than in other years I’m missing the security of imagining I know what lies ahead.
Whatever it is, I have kept myself busy today in order to keep my mind from sabotaging the happiness and excitement and hope that should accompany the start of a new year. Now, with a chance to sit down, in order to keep my mind focused on that hope, I turn my thoughts toward New Year’s Resolutions.
In all of my years, I’ve only made one New Year’s resolution that stuck. Before you judge, I should add that I used to not be a fan of New Year’s resolutions because the fact is, only about 1 in 10 of us actually stick to what we say we’re going to do. Those aren’t great odds, and so until I made that resolution on January 1, 2012, I don’t think I’d ever made one.
Five years ago today I resolved to commit to running 20 minutes every day that year. A friend had posted on Facebook that she was going to do 20 minutes of yoga, and I thought it sounded good, so I decided to run. I started that night, almost threw up on the treadmill, but stuck to it each day of that year. In fact, each day since – for a total of 5 years – I have worked out for a minimum of 20 minutes.
If you are contemplating making a New Year’s resolution in the hope that this year will be even better than the last, I invite you to make a 20 minute resolution, because it works. Commit to do something good for you or for others every day during 2017. It needn’t be anything grandiose, but do try to make it fairly specific.
Instead of resolving to eat more healthy, resolve to spend 20 minutes preparing your lunch to take to work with you instead of eating out. Rather than resolving to save more money, resolve to automate your savings and then spend 20 minutes looking over your accounts each day so you know where your money is going. Or do what I do and resolve to exercise 20 minutes every day because you know it will make you feel great!
A few years ago, on my first go round with blogging, I focused on writing about this 20 minute commitment and called it Commit2Twenty. Today I invite you to do just that. Resolve to Commit2Twenty today, focus on hope for this new year and know that this is a resolution you can keep!
Happy New Year to You! Here’s to a year full of joy to sustain you, a failure or two to learn and move on from, an abundance of health, just enough wealth, and loads of love and kindness to surround you!