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The mere idea of new year’s resolutions seems a bit of a bogus idea and frankly a little outdated. We tend to hear the same old thing- lose weight, quit drinking or smoking, exercise more, and sadly such a small percentage actually carry this out a full year. Not to say that you shouldn’t have goals for the year, but that it doesn’t need to be the start of a new year for you to make changes in your life. New beginnings can happen at any time! Stop making empty promises, which are only setting you up to fail and substitute them for a happiness road map! Here is how..
See, goal setting is kind of like steering a canoe… You must have direction in the area you would like to improve on (after all if you don’t have a destination in mind, how will you be able to recognize if you’ve successfully made it there?) but you will also be tossed and turned by the currents of life if you don’t have an idea which direction to head. Having a direction doesn’t mean that you can’t modify your route along the way, it’s just important begin the journey, so just start paddling! If you are always waiting for that perfect moment that you have all the information and feel 100% ready, life will surely pass you by.
This year, try something different and let happiness steer your canoe! Reflection is an excellent (and fun!) tool to determine what your path has been, what has worked and what hasn’t, and key to setting goals that excite, ignite, and inspire you! Here are a few ways to use Reflection to guide your 2014 undertakings:
1. Identify your true source of happiness- sit with yourself for 10 minutes and use your imagination to either journal or meditate on what really brings a smile to your face. Maybe it’s that dream you’ve had in the back of your head that excites you when you think about it, or spending more time with family. Whatever it is, let happiness be the determining factor of which direction you want to head.
2. Detoxify your mind- reflection is like “taking out the trash” in your mind. Its a great way to remove limiting beliefs and thoughts that create roadblocks to success and replace them with new ideas and more positive, constructive beliefs that are going to help you achieve your aspirations. Take some time to identify these toxic beliefs and recognize when they come up and try to steer you off your track. Recognize that all thoughts are not yours, you can choose to keep, or throw them away if they don’t serve you.
3. Set your intentions- setting intentions are like planning your route. Don’t worry about how you will achieve something, just say that you want to, and soon circumstances will align to support you because this is what you’ve decided to do. Set an intention that is from the heart as opposed to material goals and focus on the feelings you wish to feel when you have reached your destination.
4. Every day we must take small steps towards seeing our goals come to fruition. Let happiness be your guide this year and you will see that the weight will fall off and your desire to smoke and drink as much will dissolve as you will be so busy (and happy) finally fulfilling those dreams and desires you keep meaning to get to, but those other resolutions keep getting in the way.
We’ve been totally backwards in thinking that “if I do this, then I will be happy”. Instead, this year let happiness be your compass and you will find that life’s currents will magically start to flow in your direction.