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Jan-new-ary. A new perspective on resolutions.

Brené Brown, scholar and mastermind behind the profound TED talks regarding vulnerability and courage

Brené Brown, scholar and mastermind behind the profound TED talks regarding vulnerability and courage, outlines the usual pattern of New Year’s Resolutions as this:

“January 1 – This is going to be awesome!
January 5 – I’m awesome.
January 10 – This sucks.
January 20 – I suck.”

Sound familiar? Of course… because there is an aliveness and a magic to our initial moments of inspiration and aspiration. There is an air of hope that surrounds the turning of a new year – it is a symbol. And resolutions and goals are a necessary part of this. It is a time to reflect and a time to move forward.

Yet the problem is, this sense of magic, promotes an idea that a resolution is equivalent to a genie in a bottle. We end up making resolutions, and acting on them as though they are wishes that are going to be somehow granted by the rub of a lamp. Our expectations are too high.

Change is a process. “It takes 21 days to form a habit”, as they say. So, what exactly are realistic expectations?

We need to afford ourselves the grace we deserve in the “awkward teenage years” of our new ideas. They need to look strange for awhile, they need to fail and take on new forms.

We need to reality-check. “Have I set the expectation too high to start with?”, “Do I need to implement something else to achieve my goal?” 

Patience: “Is this taking longer than expected?” (This is ok!), “Do I need to set a smaller, more achievable goal first?”

Because, let’s be honest in 2016. We’re not Aladdin, and can't expect to be rubbing on a shiny lamp. Save the kooky blue genies for the movies and get your reality in check.


Image courtesy of  Rakicevic Nenad



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