This is how you need to start the new year — without FEAR
Glad you made it back to the blog after the holidays. I’m guessing that you have been enjoying the hell out of it, am I right? If you are anything like me, maybe you’ve enjoyed it a bit too much? That’s at least what my bathroom scale is trying to tell me.
Anyway, this is the time of the year when I reflect on my life the most. Which is why I wanted to take today to talk about New Year’s resolutions.
The new year is here. A whole year filled with new possibilities. Exciting, isn’t it? Or is it maybe something else you are feeling? Maybe you are not super excited, or could it be that you are actually anxious about welcoming the new year. If you are, don’t fret — you are not alone.
One of the reasons we see a surge of promises of change when January comes is because most people WANT to change. Either themselves, their lives or just a small part of them.
That is of course a very good thing. Rarely do people want to change for the worst. However as you probably know, real change demands real sacrifice. Which of course means that it forces you to step outside that comfort zone — and that can create a lot of anxiety.
On one hand you want to change your life, but on the other you know that it is going to be sooo painful. Maybe it’s better to postpone these life-changing decisions to a later date?
No siree, we will do no such thing. There’s never going to be “the perfect time” to do anything — you need to CREATE that perfect time. So, let’s instead look at how you can prepare yourself for these life changes.
- Learning something new is never easy.
It is hard and it is uncomfortable. What you need to realize is this: It’s the hard and uncomfortable things that are worth doing.
I am reminded by something the amazing Seth Godin once said:
“Change is a word for a journey with stress. You get the journey and you get the stress. At the end, you’re a different person. But both elements are part of the deal. There are plenty of journeys that are stress-free.
They take you where you expect, with little in the way of surprise or disappointment. You can call that a commute or even a familiar TV show in reruns. And there’s plenty of stress that’s journey-free. What a waste.
We can grow beyond that, achieve more than that and contribute along the way. But to do so, we might need to welcome the stress and the journey too.”
It is important that you accept that change is going to be painful in the beginning. I say beginning, because that’s the only time it’s going to be like that. Over time, you will have developed a habit, something that is a part of who you are. And the pain will not be there anymore.
- Anxiety can be a very, VERY painful emotion.
It is a close relative to fear, but with the distinction that there is no clear threat or target. When in fear, you know what you’re afraid of. When anxious, it is not as clear. It is a general feeling of overwhelm, not being able to cope with your circumstances.
I’m telling you this, because EVERYONE experiences anxiety, which means that you will too. And I want you to be prepared for it.
The natural instinct to combat anxiety is to resist it. But any psychologist worth their salt would say that you are only making things worse. The root cause of anxiety is that you resist it.
The solution is to actually let the anxiety in. Don’t resist it. On the contrary — I want you to invite it in. You heard me right! Your anxiety is actually trying to say something to you. So have the following attitude: “Welcome, my friend. I’m listening. What do you want to tell me today?”
- Do you make fear decisions or growth decisions?
Here is an example I recently read that illustrates the difference: “For instance, do you stay in your job because you are afraid you won’t get another job? Or do you stay in your job because you are excited about the growth potential there?”
When you make fear-based decisions you’re essentially giving power to someone or something else. Fear-based decisions will only lead to regret.
This same principle can be applied to your next New Year’s resolution. Are you quitting, because there is an honest-to-god good reason based on growth potential? Or are you quitting, because you’re afraid? Afraid that it’s going to be hard? Afraid that you will fail? Afraid that people will laugh at you?
It all boils down to this one question: Which will you regret more — doing it or not doing it?
And don’t think that there is only one type of fear. There is a relevant fear, the type of fear that keeps us alive, but also fear that keeps us from living. It is common to confuse these two, but don’t you do that mistake. If you do, there is a big risk that you will make a decision based on fear and abandon your resolution and fall back into the old, comfortable you. And another year will pass…
Once again, there is so much more we could talk about, but there is no need to overwhelm you with more information. That will only lead to confusion — and I don’t mean the good version of it.
What I want you to do, is to decide on ONE, and I mean only one New Years resolution. It doesn’t matter if you start a couple of days into the new year. What is important is that you have a clear path to achieve whatever it is you want to achieve.
Don’t just say that you want to lose weight. Determine a clear path to get there, which means that you need to divide your goal into small, digestible and most importantly — actionable steps.
And if you feel that you are stuck, don’t worry. I’ll help you take the first steps. Just send me a message and tell me what’s troubling you.
Meanwhile, enjoy this blog and let’s start of 2018 with a BANG!!