shutterstock_79666759A New Year – A New You – An Invitation

I know I’m a little late, but it’s still January, so cheers to a Happy New Year! We are now a few weeks into 2013 and the buzz of the holidays is coming to an end. I like to think of each new year as a chance at a fresh start and a time to begin anew. With a little effort, we can kick those bad habits back to 2012 and introduce ourselves to 2013 with new and exciting ways to make our lives better. How would you like to be different or what would you like to do differently in 2013?

STEP 1: BAN RESOLUTIONS

I always want aspects of my life to be better, but making New Year’s resolutions feels like a chore and reminds me of all the things I should be doing differently. When I hear “I should do this, I shouldn’t do that,” the word “should” immediately makes me want to rebel, be lazy and not follow through, or worse yet, beat myself up for not following through. This process didn’t feel very healthy to me and I never had much success, so I stopped making New Year’s resolutions some years ago.

The dictionary defines a resolution as “an act or process to be resolved, a problem to be solved, analyzing a complex notion into simpler ones.” Oh boy, this doesn’t sound like a fresh start to a new year, it sounds like another issue to be resolved at some point in my already busy life! So my solution is simple, I no longer make New Year’s resolutions, instead I set New Year’s intentions.

STEP 2: SET YOUR INTENTIONS

You can choose an intention for just about anything. Perhaps you’d like to improve your focus and concentration this year. You can simply start by clearing your environment and your mind of the things that are blocking your focus, which might take a few goals, and weeks, in itself. Let your intentions be your guide in life, like a lighthouse that helps you find your way in the dark. Your New Year’s intentions will help you make decisions and choices in life. When making a decision, ask yourself what will help you move forward in fulfilling your intention and consider which of your choices could take you a step backwards away from your intention.

For myself, I have set an intention to be my best self and achieve magnetic health in my mind, body and my spirit this year. As you may already know, I have been teaching and developing my course, Becoming Your Best, for many years, and it is now finally available online. This is a huge step for me, and I’m very excited about where it will go in 2013. There are so many layers to becoming our best selves and this year, I intend to take it more seriously than ever before. The choices I will make on a daily basis will be driven by my intention. Every action or decision will either take me closer to achieving my intention or will take me further away from it.

STEP 3: SHIFT YOUR MINDSET

Achieving our greatest intentions doesn’t have to be hard, or even a challenge. All it takes is a simple mindset shift. Focus your energy on your intention and only do things that will help you to reach it. Instead of trying to make lots of changes all at once, layer them week by week by setting weekly goals for yourself. Doing this will help keep your intentions attainable and realistic. Some people need a longer adjustment to a new way of doing things, which is perfectly normal. If your intention is to get into the best shape of your life, you wouldn’t start by going to the gym and working yourself hard every day, especially if you hadn’t been exercising regularly because you’d probably be hurt or exhausted after a week of this. Rather, you’d build up your strength week by week, starting at an easy pace and gradually increasing your endurance so that you could persevere long-term.

There are 52 weeks in a year no matter when you start counting your year for changes. If these first few of weeks haven’t gone exactly as you’d planned, don’t beat yourself up. Perhaps your intention is to sleep better and have more energy. Create a new plan of action that involves weekly goals that won’t overwhelm you. For example, if you set an intention to sleep better, you may not be sleeping a solid eight hours every night by February, but any improvement in your sleeping patterns means you are closer to reaching your intention. 52 solid changes will surely yield a new and better you, and now is the perfect time to start as 2013 has just begun. Please join me on this journey to discover your best self; surrounding yourself with support is the best tool you can have in achieving your goals. You can start by liking my Becoming Your Best Facebook page, where you can start discussions, ask questions and get coaching tips from me. This can by your first step in reaching your 2013 intentions. I’ll see you there!

 

10 Tips for Making Solid Changes This Year

1. Determine what it is that you truly want in 2013.
2. Set one or more intentions that you can work towards all year.
3. Write down your intention somewhere that you can see it multiple times a day, so it’s always in the forefront and back of your mind.
4. Write down how your life will be better when you achieve your intention.
5. Start simple. Set yourself up for success by setting very attainable goals until you feel more comfortable challenging yourself.
6. Break your goals down into simple and do-able steps. Set realistic and achievable goals that will lead you closer to your intention.
7. Reward yourself for every weekly goal achieved. When you’re being rewarded for success frequently, you will be more motivated to persevere through the next goal (and the next…)
8. Focus on what you will be gaining in the long run instead of what you’re missing out on when you say no to things that will take you away from your intention (like that delicious chocolate cake).
9. Be present. We tend to do things we may regret later when we are unconscious about our choices or make them in reaction mode.
10. Tell your friends and family about your intention so that they can help keep you on track and offer support along the way.

 

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