My 5 Affirmations for the New Year


Did you make any resolutions or set any goals for the New Year? I did not. I have written about my resolution making avoidance before. And about goal setting. And the three words thing. I’ve tried them all. I have discovered none work for me. Perhaps I have accountability issues. Regardless, I’ve ditched them all.

This year the idea of stating a few simple affirmations appeals to me.

Will this work any better? Who knows.

What is an affirmation?

It’s a simple statement affirming something, duh…right?

This sort of thing seems way more appealing. Resolutions can be so restrictive. Usually they are all about fixing what’s wrong with us. Same old, same old, right?

So, what are my affirmations?

1. I will honor my grief. 

I will give myself permission to do what I’m always suggesting others should do. Why is it sometimes so hard to follow your own advice anyway?

2. I will practice self-care. 

This is a biggie and covers a lot of ground. But don’t you think its sounds so much kinder and less judgmental than saying, I will lose weight, exercise more, eat healthier, get organized or whatever? Practicing self care is so much broader. So much more forgiving, so much more gentle sounding. After all, showing compassion should start with yourself, right?

3. I will keep writing for the sheer enjoyment, fulfillment and overall benefit the process brings to me.

I need to write. I do. I feel better when I write. Specifically, I am thinking about starting a new book about grief. I will continue blogging weekly because this gives me structure and a deadline (remember, I’m a procrastinator). I intend to put together a few new ebooks in the coming months. I might even start journaling again. I will not worry about the number of readers or followers I have or do not have, or how many books I sell. I will write because I want to. Because writing helps me figure shit out. And there is nothing in the world like the feeling I get from helping others figure shit out, too, once in a while in the process.

4. I will let go of resentments. 

Some people, some things bug the heck out of me, but I will not allow resentments to build and fester. But I will write about them if I want to.

5. I will strive to inspire others.

By this I do not mean I want others to look at me and say, oh look, she is so inspirational in what she says and does. No, not at all, but by sharing my cancer truths, opinions, fears, dreams or whatever, I hope to encourage others to do the same. I want others to realize it’s okay to ditch societal expectations regarding cancer, grief (or whatever) that bog us all down.

So there you have ’em, my five affirmations for 2017. Well, for now anyway ‘cuz I can change, delete, or add to them whenever I want. They’re mine after all.

Do you think you might like to give affirmations a try?

Regardless, may 2017 be kind to you. May it be kind to us all.

Do you make New Year’s resolutions or choose three guide words?

If yes, share away if you’d like to. If not, why not?

Would you like to share an affirmation or two of yours?

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19 thoughts to “Affirmations”

  1. Hi Nancy, affirmations make a lot of sense. Haven’t felt goal oriented for a while (I think) because the goals feel like abstract structures similar to the Mission Statements we were ordered to believe in at my last job. Instead, the idea of paying attention to what’s happening around me, and responding to it BEFORE a strategy comes to mind keeps me present.
    For instance, the constant replay of anger towards the way my health has been bungled by the medical system leaves me trapped in a loop. So I started following the anger rather than the harm and found a source of frustration that led to the anger was really a form of image management. “I don’t deserve to be treated this way!” Yes, of course, so let’s not allow this drama to continue by playing the How Bad is THIS Doctor game.
    This is probably contained in your #4 on resentments. Sometimes resentments are disappointments in the actions of others and we need to ask if they were deliberate or normal human clumsiness. Maybe, in a grim way, since some of us are exposed to life and death decisions where mistakes MATTER A LOT, we might be too attentive to details
    An affirmation? I accept that mistakes are not only possible but often assemble into pre-mistake patterns that I need not endure. It isn’t my destiny to be a victim of common and avoidable mistakes and the proof is I’m still alive.

    1. Scott, Thank you for sharing your insights. I agree with your words, “Sometimes resentments are disappointments in the actions of others…” So true. Thanks for sharing an affirmation too.

  2. I so appreciate your words “I need to write. I do. I feel better when I write.” I feel the same way. And I try not to attach too many expectations to it.

    I have used variations on affirmations and mantras for a long time and they help significantly. In fact, one is about expectations–“Expect less, accept more.”

    Thanks Nancy!

    1. Lisa, “Expect less, accept more.” That’s an interesting one. I have to give that a bit more thought. Thank you for sharing and please don’t ever stop writing, Lisa.

  3. 3 cheers! Yep resolutions and guided words, the whole ritual of all that does not appeal to me. And the whole “new year” thing, I get it (time for introspection, blah blah blah) is silly. If you wanna make a change on some random date like May 11, then do it. Grr.
    #4 will be hard for me, but yes something I should do. I don’t actively nurse resentment (I don’t waste the time or energy) but I don’t actively let them go either.
    #5 is where I will get very hung up. I hate the whole inspiration thing and have been working on a post about the inspiration porn in cancer culture. I’ve said in old posts my being fine with being an inspiration or not to others and I’m e-examining that. I don’t like that whole “inspiring” thing. Hmmm–thanks for giving me something to think about!
    Good luck and thanks for the post and the “inspiration” (ha ha) to do same! xo Wendi

    1. CC, I do find myself being reflective at the end of each year, but the resolution thing just doesn’t appeal to me either. I much prefer viewing each day as a fresh start, sometimes each hour. As you said, any random day works if you wanna make a change. I hate the idea of just because you’ve had cancer, you automatically are supposed to be an inspiration to others. Goes back to that whole cancer is a gift notion and you know my thoughts on that, right? And that whole epiphany thing…Inspiration porn. That’s a good way to put it! Hope you write that post. I believe that sometimes being “curmudgeony” can be way more inspirational. Some people just don’t get that point of view. But that’s okay. You inspire me, I know that. Thanks for sharing. Hope you write that post.

  4. Nancy, I love the idea of affirmations. Like you, I do not do New Year’s resolutions because I take each day as an opportunity to grow or be lazy. I enjoy doing both. There’s too much pressure in our society as it is, why would I want to create more pressure for myself? Instead, I would like to learn how to be kind to myself. Think of me first from time to time and practice self-care — there goes two of my affirmations for the New Year.

    I must admit #4 is a very hard one for me but I wish to let things go too and have less expectations to allow myself some sense of peace. I hope to do more writing as well. And of course, I also look forward to reading your new material, especially the one about grief. xo

    1. Rebecca, Yeah, resolutions just don’t work for me anymore. Actually, they never did. Love how you mentioned each day is an opportunity to grow or be lazy. Sometimes I think laziness gets a bad rap. Days of pure laziness are actually good for us. Self-care is critical for all of us and yet, we’re so reluctant to put ourselves first. I’m glad being kinder to yourself is one of your affirmations. Good for you. Thank you for sharing. I look forward to reading whatever you write this year. And about that grief book, it’s going to be a while. I’m still in the thinking about it stage. But thank you for saying you would want to read it. xo

  5. I don’t necessarily make new year’s resolutions or goals but I’m always writing down priorities and “systems” for reaching certain goals, usually at the start of each month. But most of these are work related. These “goals” usually change each month. Basically I’m obsessed with lists and following a schedule!

    1. Lindsay, It sounds like you take after your father when it comes to list making. 🙂 Good for you for writing down priorities and goals on a monthly basis. There’s something about the act of writing them down that further “cements” them. Sometimes I wish I was more obsessed with lists, goals, and such. I do like this affirmation thing though. We shall see how it goes. Thank you for sharing.

  6. Affirmations can be very powerful. Like you, I’m not a fan of resolutions. They often seem a setup for failure. I think resolutions can feel like an overbearing, perfectionist authority figure. Affirmations feel more like our own personal cheerleader who believes we can do whatever we set our minds to.

    1. Eileen, Resolutions are generally a setup for failure for me, that’s for sure. I much prefer the idea of affirmations. They feel more like our own personal cheerleader, I like the way you put that. Thank you for reading and sharing.

  7. Hi Nancy,

    Your affirmations sound great, and I think this is a great way to bring in a new year. I especially love the one on self-care. It is excellent. You are right: it’s much better to say we will practice self-care than say we will lose weight and so on. For me, self-care involves taking care of myself physically, mentally, and spiritually.

    Thank you for the inspirational post!

    1. Beth, I am hoping going the affirmation route helps me do better with practicing self-care; I think it might. We shall see. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Abigail, Like you, I don’t do resolutions. Affirmations seem more forgiving, so they appeal to me more. I know you pick a word to serve as a guide of sorts. It’d be tough for me to zero in on just one word! 🙂 Thank you for stopping by and taking time to comment.

  8. You inspire me. You can absolutely tick that one. And these are all wonderful go-bys. I’ve made some private decisions to get things in the right priority – my health first the rest all come naturally if that’s the first thing on my to-do list each day. I might be not quite up to it some days but I won’t beat myself up anymore. That’s a good way to show myself I care and that my words meet my actions. Much love dear Nancy.

    1. Ilene, Aww, you say the nicest things. Sometimes I wonder why it’s so hard to put ourselves first when, in fact, it’s something we all need to do. You’re so right, if we do that, the rest comes more naturally, more easily – at least somewhat. Thank you for reading. Much love to you too, Ilene. xo

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