So many times I have started my new year with a list of new years resolutions which are completely unrealistic and impossible to keep. They usually involve some sort of major overhaul of my life and huge goals like losing 2 stone.
This year I want to make resolutions that don't completely change me, or make me feel bad if I don't achieve them (as I inevitably won't) instead I want to focus on things that enhance what I already have and make me happy with the things I already have in my life.
Learn to be happy in my own skin
In 2020 I decided to ditch the dieting. I have been on some form of diet ever since I was at University, me and my friends have tried every large named diet going (not mentioning names!) and while they all worked for a time, I always stopped following them as I found I couldn't maintain them long term and then the weight would come back on. Prior to having R I was the slimmest I had ever been but I still thought I looked big (I look at photos now and can't believe why I thought that) I have come to the realisation that I can diet forever, lose a load of weight and I will still not be happy with myself. Its a sobering thought. So I began to try to figure out why I felt the need to change myself constantly, why slimmer is better - as it doesn't necessarily mean healthier. I have read some books around the subject of intuitive eating which I have found really interesting. It's easy to think that intuitive eating is just about gorging yourself on everything all the time without guilt, eating 20 cupcakes in one sitting and being terribly unhealthy, but it is actually about listening to your body and understanding its cues. Your body knows what it needs at any given time and starving it or overeating are both dangerous. Listening to your cues and eating when hungry and finishing when full is so hard to do but it is so worth achieving. Both the books below will give you a bit of an insight into it if you are interested.
So this year I am going to spend some time on myself and try to be happy as I am. Ultimately I want to accept that I will never be a size 8 and there is nothing wrong with that. I want to eat healthily to nourish my body and not feel guilt when I eat something that doesn't fit the 'healthy' label. I want to stop demonizing food and appreciate it as something that nourishes me and I can enjoy without recrimination. I want to buy clothes that fit me, not that I 'might get into one day when I've lost a few pounds' and I want to exercise in a way that makes me feel fitter and able to keep up with my toddler with ease! 2021 is a year of retraining my brain!
Exercise to make myself happy
I love exercise and the endorphins it gives me, I adore the feeling of accomplishment when you complete a class or do something a bit better than the time before. This one may sound obvious but I only love to exercise when it is something I enjoy doing. However I have been known to drag myself to the gym or do some exercise when I really wasn't in the mood or didn't want to do that particular activity. So this year rather than just make a resolution to 'exercise more' or 'get fit for 2021' I am going to make a pact with myself that I will do exercise only if I want to at that time. It's ok if some days I choose to sit and read my book rather than go for a run! However I am going to find more activities I enjoy, I don't particularly enjoy running except when I have someone to run with so I'll make more effort to run with a friend (tiers allowing of course!) I love dancing so I will find more dance classes to join along with. I have a great membership with MoveGB which allows me to try lots of different activities at different venues so I never get bored of doing the same thing all the time. Variation is key for me!
Carry on learning bits on my guitar
I got a guitar for my birthday this year (thank you hubby) and have
used lockdown to start re teaching myself to play - I used to play when I was at school and wish I hadn't given it up. I am still only learning the basics but I'm not pressurising myself to get amazingly proficient by the end of the year. I just want to enjoy learning it and playing to amuse myself!
Work out what matters and get rid of the rest
I recently read a book called the Lazy Genius Way and found it so useful. It was a sort of help book which outlines ways in which you can name what matters in your life and ditch the rest, there were so many elements of this book I resonated with, especially when reading about challenging the voice in your head that says you aren't good enough. It is so easy to beat yourself up and constantly compare yourself to others, imagining that they are 'doing life' better than you, when what we should be doing is working out what matters to us and our family and building on that. So I will be using lots of her ideas and implementing them in my day to day life to try and to enhance my life and bring peace and order o my life using sustainable steps. If you are interested in reading the book for yourself you can find it on Amazon.
Enjoy more time with my friends and family
This one is an absolute must. If this year has taught me anything it is that my loved ones are the most important thing in my life. I took for granted that they were always around and I could see them whenever I want. After this pandemic I have realised just how privileged I had been and suddenly not being able to see those closest to me in person has been so hard. I don't want to take my family and friends for granted as life is so fleeting and I want to spend it with those that matter. It is so easy to cancel plans and choose to stay at home because you are tired or stressed. However if this pandemic has taught me anything it is that life is short and I need to make the effort to see the people who enhance my life - even if that is just via zoom at the moment.
So those are my 'resolutions' for this year. I hope 2021 is going to be a year of acceptance, happiness and love. As life is too short for it to be about anything else for me! I hope 2021 is a good year for you all too!