I have never been a great fan of New Year`s Resolutions. They tend to either be too superficial or too ambitious to actually work and they have a tendency to lose their appeal somewhere around the end of January. It comes therefore as no surprise that I had no intention of coming up with a resolution for myself this year. But that would soon change.
I had spent the holidays with my family and enjoyed a couple of days in the beautiful mountains of St. Moritz with my boyfriend. The days were filled with walks in the snow, delicious mountain food and time spent with friends who came to visit us. I enjoyed the holiday immensely, but, as it can sometimes be the case when many people are involved, the days were often a bit hectic and there wasn`t really a lot of time to think, to calm down and to reflect.
The first two days after we had come home I felt completely exhausted and tired. I still had a couple more days off from work so I had time to rest (which sounds ironic given that I had just been on holidays but that`s what I needed most). The first two days I slept a lot, I cooked, went for a walk and I finally found some time to calm down and meditate. All of this felt wonderful, but at the same time I noticed a growing feeling of anxiety steering up within me. I often feel guilty when I have a day off and the people around me are working. I start to feel like I need to do something, just anything and stop being lazy, but at the same time, I want to enjoy the time I have and make the most of it and then it becomes this vicious circle. It`s very irrational and counterproductive but there we go. Does anyone else experience that too?
On the third day there was a storm going on and the gloomy weather was a perfect reflection of my own mood at this point. l had had a throbbing headache all day, I couldn`t leave the house because of the storm, I felt trapped and moody and frustrated. I decided to take a yoga class with one of my former teachers in the evening which was a very smart decision. It felt wonderful to move in a hot room, to sweat and to allow myself to let go. I became so relaxed and calm and felt back in my body again. That night I slept like a baby and when I woke up the next morning I was happy. Just totally and incredibly happy. At first, I didn`t understand what had changed but than I realised what was different: I wasn`t thinking! My mind was quiet and I was completely present, anchored in my body. The storm was over and the sun shone through my window the sky full of shades of blue, pink and cold (again mirroring my mood perfectly). There I was. Happy, present, myself. The guilt had gone, the critical voice in my head was silent. I felt at peace.
My New Year`s Resolution
After a beautiful lazy morning with a delicious smoothy and yoga in the sun I decided it was time to get to work and start planning the year. I had a call scheduled with Greta to talk about our upcoming Yoga retreat in September in Sardinia and I was thinking about future workshops and plans for the coming months. And that`s where it hit me! My biggest goal for this year is to learn and gain as much knowledge as possible. I love learning, I love studying, and there are so many new fields I want to discover! I want to learn more about sound healing and meditation, I want to finally learn swing dance (yes, this has been on my list for freaking ever), I want to get new skills regarding yoga (maybe a course in pregnancy yoga?) and I want to increase my private lessons. I want to see at least 4 new countries and I want to meet new people that can help me grow.
Now let`s repeat this again. My New Year`s Resolution is to learn! Isn`t that amazing? Ok, maybe you are sitting here now and wondering what is so earth-shattering about this revelation. But think about it for a moment! So many times we make plans and have dreams and they sound incredible and wonderful. And then the doubt starts to creep in. That little voice in our head that says "but what if I fail, what if it doesn`t work?". Or we don`t know what we want to do next, we might feel that we want something to change but we have no idea where to start and where to go from here. That`s where the pressure starts. We get anxious and nervous, and we start to lose confidence in ourselves.
However, if our goal is to learn, if what we want most is to gain new knowledge, we can never fail! Learning is our natural state. Fearing and worrying is not! Every situation in life can offer an opportunity to learn, to grow and to evolve - no matter whether it is a big massive new undertaking or a small moment in your everyday life. Remember when you were a little child, how curious you were about everything, how fearless and confident you took on any adventure, big or small. This is the mindset in which we thrive!
Let me give you an example: I am afraid of heights which is way whenever we go to the mountains my boyfriend is driving. Last weekend a friend and I had planned to meet a friend in the mountains and I was terrified that I would not be able to drive, that I would freeze and we would get stuck somewhere on a pass. But instead of letting fear take over I decided that this would be the perfect opportunity to learn how to drive in the mountains. Suddenly, this trip did not seem scary anymore but a great opportunity to get a new skill. And guess what: I did it, I drove us all the way up there without any problems. Yes, I was still a bit nervous but I did it! By changing my view, by creating a new narrative for my situation I was able to let go of my fear and allow myself to succeed.
You can also take this philosophy into your everyday life. Maybe you have a task at work that you have to finish but you really don`t want to do it. Instead of telling yourself all the reasons why this task is horrible and why you don`t want to do it, ask yourself what you can learn from it. Maybe you learn that you are actually quite efficient when you get your mind to it. Maybe you just learn that it feels really good to have it out of your head and out of your way. Or maybe you were able to practice a moment of mindfulness while working on your task, where you stopped judging the situation as annoying, bad or uncomfortable and you simply were present.
You can practice this kind of thinking everywhere! Do it! Try it out and see what is going to happen!
Now you know what my big goal is for this year. Did it resonate with you? Do you have goals and dreams you want to see come true? Potential you want to see fulfilled? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section!