The Jenny Craig commercials are in mad force, Rubbermaid is killin’ it with the giant bins on Target commercials, and somehow Slimfast is still surviving in the year 2019 as we are bombarded with resolution advertisements. The fridge at work looks different each January, and Dave in accounting has dropped 19 lbs. in 92 hours…and he’s making sure you know it! Through valiant efforts and if we are truly good people, we WANT our peers to achieve (even if Dave is bordering on having his Swingline stolen as revenge for his magical – and annoying – weight loss). Whatever Dave! Resolutions look good in January, but mindsets look good 24/7. It’s the gimmick of a quick-fix that gets us down during a period of resolution because when we look back at the years we changed in our individual lives, did a successful resolution lead to life-change, and were we even paying attention? Did we think we failed at a resolution that, in retrospect, was merely a part of the entire, “Everybody else is doing it, I may as well too,” pendulum? Or were we in a state of “making changes” at what truly wasn’t the right time? And there-in asking the question, “Can any time be the right time?” to make a positive life change. Answer: Absolutely.
I’m thinking personally of three different years of my life that defined me and the years surrounding them: 2006, 2009, and 2012. Sure, there were other BIG YEARS in my life – the year my son was born, the year we moved cross-country, the year I finally nailed a perfect buffalo-chicken-dip recipe, but those years only have the aforementioned ones to thank because the snowball effects of hitting my resolutions did not make small change, in the end, hitting my resolutions made LIFE CHANGE. In these three HUGE YEAR scenarios, I began each at different spots physically, some in and some out of shape, some in-tune with myself and some out, some with a plan, some just wingin’ it and trying a fad diet or a random new goal like the Mini Marathon. However, the shift into or constant practice of healthier habits was the cause of the great year that each forged ahead post-January.
In all of these years, it is worth noting, I’d previously experienced a year prior in every case that had tested me emotionally. I came in swinging in ’06, ’09, and ’12. I dug deep to find new hobbies and commitments, healthier daily choices, and an openness to any new opportunity – sometimes carrying the really great habits, like running or the start of a side-gig making extra cash, into many years to come. It was like in each case, the January 1st date coincided with me saying, “I’m just not going to be sad, or down, or defeated with a body that’s tight in these Pitaya jeans anymore (’06 was a different time, people). Go find your happy, girl!” THAT was the message I carried. I nailed my resolutions in all of those years that followed THOSE firsts of Januarys. I held tight to goals the harder each step became. Long-term held-tight, like Chrissy Tiegan killin’ it, on her most confident day for at least a whole year and on. But why? Other years I held resolutions, other years I tried and didn’t fail, but my mindset in these “life-changing” years was the game-changer. Mindset is the key to it all. It was about more than the resolutions.
So I suppose the strategy for me to take, at this ripe age of 34 is not to ask, “How will I lose a few pounds?” Or, “Maybe I can read more books?” But rather, “What’s gonna motivate me enough to shake off my NOW in place of my NEXT?” That’s it, that’s the crux here, gang! Not two pounds, or more water, or more meditation, or a filled journal, but what’s the motivation? I want the HAPPY that comes from a balanced, focused, and goal-driven life. Boom. That’s it. Call off the hounds!! I’m not finding this on a treadmill, but I will find crumbs of it there, just like I’ll find morsels of it in writing, and in the bathtub of my bubbly self-care, and snippets in training for a new certification.
A reflection of this magnitude was much more than 946 words. It’s been a reflection of millions of my moments. For years. I never looked back at those Januarys. Instead, I have always pondered the total of each of those calendar years, until writing this piece. By the way, side note, reflection is the best and worst thing for an over-thinker, EVER! But this is it, gang, this is the last year of the decade. I’m getting a jump on this entire year, that’s all a resolution really is, after all. It’s any day of the year. It’s the Monday after the Super Bowl, or the Tuesday after Labor Day, it’s the moment YOU DECIDE you’re done living this way and ready to live “that way!” Deciding it’s time to, “LIVE YOUR NEXT YOU,” can mean any day, and it can carry you for years-to-come with the ambition and zest we all used to feel when we were young, the world was new, and tackling a goal for the first time was a sentiment of pure joy. Here’s to a GREAT LIFE and starting those great years ANY DAY, not just a great January! See you at the juice bar, lovies! Maybe I’ll be there today, or perhaps I’ll get there in a couple weeks (and Dear God, I hope I have a juice the Monday after the Super Bowl), but the right mindset is going to get me there, one 16 oz. Green Giant at a time.