A plethora of articles on New Years resolutions has already begun and will continue for a couple of months. The most popular one seems to always concentrate on weight loss and getting in shape. I can totally resonate with that one since I think I’ve spent most of my life either thinking about losing weight or actually losing it. I’ve often said that I’ve lost and gained a tribe of people.
Resolutions of any kind are easy to make. After all I can say anything in the spirit of the moment, but do I have the ability to follow through? That takes discipline, respect for self, and the knowledge that we may have to handle situations that test our ability to handle frustration.
Discipline is not always easy because it necessitates the ability to say “NO” to oneself. I believe this has gotten harder in a society that likes to feed every nook and cranny of it’s persona with stuff they think they ” haft to have” including food. My grandparents and parents were imbued with a frugality that permeated every facet of their lives. Saying “NO” came easy because they lived through the depression and World War Two. As the culture became more financially stable, no turned to yes, and yes turned yes, yes, yes!
I am not recommending we live as if every meal might be our last, but we might consider exercising our ability to say “No” to ourselves, which has been found to enhance frustration tolerance. We often hear parents saying no to their children, but how often do we say it to ourselves. “No, I don’t need another piece of pizza.” ” No, I don’t need another pair of shoes”! “No, I don’t need to text while I’m driving”!
Imagine how much less guilt we would feel as a result of not always buying into YES. It actually frees our minds from having to come up with irrational reasons on why we said yes in the first place. How many times have you heard someone say “I shouldn’t have eaten that, or bought that, or said that?” How many hours have we spent ” shoulding on ourselves?”
You may want to start the New Year by taking a few baby steps in the direction of saying “no” to yourself. Make it your brain exercise. The more you do it, the easier it gets. The perks are endless. But, I can almost guarantee, you’ll feel better about yourself, have more patience, increase your resiliency and flexibility and you might even be easier to get along with. Now that might be good for everyone.