As the New Year unfolds, do you participate in the three guide words activity that has become popular with many bloggers and blog readers? I do. Sort of. Admittedly, for the past three years I have chosen my three words carefully and then more or less forgotten about them. Sure I thought about them from time to time during the year – if I could remember what they were when I wanted to. But did they ever actually guide me? No, not really. I used to do resolutions the same way; I’d make them and then not think much more about them. I fear I may have some sort of accountability issue, or maybe it’s just a memory issue…
Regardless, I don’t do resolutions anymore at all. I don’t like feeling obligated to promises I make to myself that I know I should keep, but also know fully well more than likely I won’t. I used to resolve to lose weight, eat healthier, exercise more, get organized, you know, all the usual stuff.
Did I ever actually succeed at any of them for the long haul?
No. Not really.
Sure I made improvements, but I never got as far as I wanted to because I always set the bar too high. And this is probably why so many resolutions fail (I like to say the resolutions fail, not those who make them). We aim too high. Sometimes less is more. Often times smaller steps are better.
Still, every January I always find myself reading magazine articles, blog posts and essays about making resolutions (or whatever the writer chooses to call them) for improving one’s self, life, relationships, job or whatever it is that’s in need of improvement. A ‘favorite’ of mine this year went something along the lines of each day I will try to do something that scares me. Yikes! Are you kidding me? Why the heck would anyone want to do that?
Who needs to add fear onto the daily agenda?
Do I believe in stretching oneself intellectually, physically, or however one chooses to grow? Of course I do. But do something every day that scares me? No way. I’ll settle for once in a while, thank you very much. Of course, if you like this kind of thing, more power to you.
There gets to be a resolution saturation point, even when just reading about others making them, don’t you agree?
Sooner or later each January, I find myself eventually muttering to myself, enough with the resolution crap!
Besides, the old you and your old ways aren’t that bad are they? You made it this far, right?
If you’re like me, you’ve ditched the resolution making. But for some reason, I do like the idea of choosing three (or however many you’d like) guide words. Maybe it’s because it’s more open ended. Or maybe it’s because I like words. Who knows?
Regardless, once again I am choosing three guide words for the New Year. This year I am going to write them down somewhere so I can see them every day and actually think about why I chose them. Yes, really. I’m going to do that.
My three guide words for 2015 are:
Trust – I want to trust that I can handle whatever comes my way this year and allow the year to unfold. It’s not like we control as much as we think we do anyway. I want to learn to trust my own body again. Is this even possible post cancer diagnosis? Maybe. Maybe not. I also want to build on the trust in all of my relationships (including with you, my dear readers) because without trust, you have nothing.
Focus – I intend to focus on things that matter most to me like finishing my memoir, writing posts for my blog and other venues, reading blogs I follow more regularly, walking my dogs, spending time with my family, carving out me time as well as writing time, reading actual books time, thinking time and doing nothing time. (Yes, doing nothing matters too). Maybe focus is just another word for prioritize, but I like the sound of focus better, this year anyway.
Balance – I’ve chosen this word before, but guess what? I don’t care. I am choosing it again because I want to. I need to.
Trust. Focus. Balance.
There they are, my three guide words for 2015.
What are yours?