Saturday, January 03, 2004

New Year's Resolutions

I don't do resolutions and until I read this post by Kathryn at A Mindful Life I did not understand why.

"Happy New Year! I hope your holidays brought some joy amidst all the chaos. Here we are, full of hope and resolution to improve ourselves. What is it about the turn of the calendar every 12 months that causes us to aspire to change? A more logical new year would be one's birthday, actually.

In any case, I didn't make any resolutions. Nope, not a one. I've decided, this year, to apply the concept of intention. (Yes, I know what they say about intentions, but I'm not playing.) I believe there really is a difference. A resolution feels like a declaration -- a promise to deliver -- with expectation turning to disappointment and judgment if it is not fulfilled. Who wants to start a new year with guilt?

Intention feels different. I've identified what I would like to do this year and will use this list to keep me inspired. The issue of whether or not I do them isn't paramount. If I slack off, there is no sense of failure. I'll just remember my purpose and return to fulfilling my intentions as best as I can. (This is similar to meditation. When you notice yourself thinking, the point is not to castigate yourself for failing to keep an empty mind. That's a distraction. You simply notice that you're thinking and then return to meditation.) This way, I'll fulfill my intentions to some degree and not fritter away NOW with self-recrimination. Sounds a lot more fun, don't you think?"

I agree, it does sound like more fun. This year my intentions are:
1. To eat healthier
2. To exercise daily
3. To drink more water
4. To meditate daily
5. To carry out the above intentions the best I can.

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