Guide to “Guilt-Free New Year Resolutions”

To resolve or not to resolve? If you are like most you have guilt over falling short of your 2010 promises to self. I don’t make them myself but that is not to say I don’t set goals. It isn’t so much the resolution but the motivation that is questionable.

The average resolution is motivated by guilt or a sense of “should.” We feel bad about some aspect of our lives. We want to stop a bad habit or start something we should be doing already. Lose weight, quit smoking, go to church, exercise, be on time, visit friends, get organized, read a book … you get the picture. By the end of the year few of the goals are realized cycling around to another year of guilt.

Instead of fear and guilt it is better to set goals according to your passions. It is no chore to do what you love. No burden of guilt of can do the work of an ounce of released passion. To be successful in a New Year Resolution you need at least four things.

1. Identify an area of interest or passion. Build on positives or find a positive motivation to correct a negative, e.g. playing tennis.

2. Set a concrete, time sensitive, reasonable goal for the year to come. It must be concrete such as “join a tennis club in January” instead of “play more tennis.”

3. Develop a simple strategy to accomplish something in your passion area e.g. “Take 5 tennis lessons and compete in 4 tournaments” rather than “get on the court.”

4. Finally, tell someone about your dream and strategy. Better yet, partner with someone. You will need all the support you can get to change a habit.

Welcome to Guilt Free New Year Resolutions where you can build on your passions, overcome the guilt cycle and live with freedom to nourish your heart’s desires. Happy New Year!