5 New Year’s Resolutions to Consider for Personal Growth

5 New Year’s Resolutions to Consider for Personal Growth

People often use New Year’s Resolutions as an opportunity to try to break a bad habit.   Some of the most common ones are to lose weight, exercise more, or stop smoking. But have you considered setting goals that will help you personally and interpersonally?   Here are a few to consider:

1.  Pay it Forward

How Kindness Spreads

How a Single Act of Kindness Can Spread

The concept of Pay it Forward was initially popularized by the 2000 movie of the same title. It’s worth watching for inspiration. Since then researchers who look at the effects of kindness have shown that it pays off both for the givers, but also the receivers, and that it can have a cascading effect! This means that if Albert gives to Betty, Betty is more likely to give to Charlie and Charlie is more likely to give to David.   And furthermore Betty, Charlie and David are more likely to keep giving to others as time passes!

So start a wave of paying it forward, you could literally be impacting dozens of people in positive ways!

2.  Practice Gratitude

Thanks thumbs upThere are tons of benefits to practicing gratitude. Gratitude can help us better manage stress, boost our immune systems, have better health outcomes, deal better with loss, win new friends, increase happiness, enhance empathy and reduce aggression, sleep better and improve self-esteem!

My grandfather lived until he was 105, and he was one of the most grateful people I’ve ever met.   I think I now know his secret to longevity!

So start a gratitude habit!  You can start a gratitude journal, or name one thing you grateful for every day!  Make sure that that gratitude gets expressed to others, because it could spread!

3.  Enhance Your Listening Skills

If you are the kind of person that spends more time in conversations talking, rather than listening, you may need to practice the art of listening.   Friendships form from people showing a mutual interest in each other and talking about the things that interest both of you. If you are the only one talking, the other person may feel like you are only interested in yourself.   Good relationships form on the foundation of a healthy mutual interest in what each other has to say.

For intimate relationships,
listening skills are crucial when emotions are running high.   If you tend to shy away from conflict, or tend to get defensive, then I strongly advise working on the ability to listen with compassion and without judgment. These skills are essential for resolving conflicts.   If this is your challenge, I strongly recommend Non-Violent Communication (NVC). It teaches you to express your feelings and needs, and how to compassionately listen to others feelings and needs.   In my relationships, I’ve had too many people unwilling to apologize for being insensitive or unsatisfying apologies.  And it has taken a toll on many of my relationships.   Then a friend who’d hurt me, apologized using NVC,  where he really listened deeply and tried to connect with how I felt.   It was  a profoundly moving experience, and I knew at that point that he had what it takes to be a trusted friend!

NVC bookThere are NVC groups in most major cities and online.   I also highly recommend GROK cards, which are card games you can play to practice the techniques.

Sometimes it can be emotionally difficult to listen to others or practice NVC if your own needs haven’t been met. If you struggle with this, contact me at 1855 ENERJOY. We can release subconscious barriers to compassionate listening.

4 . Stretch Yourself in New Ways

Last summer, I started to realize that I’ve always been less open to new experiences.   I decided to release subconscious barriers around that, and found myself being open to doing a lot more!   Activities that I tried included going to the opera, story telling events, and telling stories, taking acting, improv and pottery classes.   I especially enjoyed improv!  I never would have imagined that it would be so life enriching and so much fun!

So if you are the kind of person that finds yourself hiding from new experiences, I’m going to challenge you to try new things.   Its important to be able to take risks to succeed in life, and so this can be a fun way to practice that.   You’ll not only build your confidence and sense of empowerment, but you’ll enrich your life!

5. Practice Self Care

Meditation by Young WomanMany women work extremely hard, then come home and take care of their family, and leave no time for themselves.   If you find that your life is about pleasing others, and you are not taking care of your own needs, then make this next year about self care for you.   Self care can look like a variety of different things to different people. If you aren’t getting enough exercise, it could be taking a walk. If you don’t have enough play time or time with friends that matter to you, you might consider either one self care. Maybe it’s pursuing that dream or taking time to relax.

For some women, this is easier said than done. Know however that if you don’t take the time to take care of yourself first, your ability to help others becomes more limited.  If your helping is an attempt to get your own needs met, then your ability make decisions about how to effectively help will be biased.   Meeting the needs of others before your own also increases caregiver stress, which negatively affects both your emotional and physical well-being.   And importantly:

If you always put someone else first, there’s a tendency for others to depreciate you, to lose respect, because respect comes from an understanding that that person has her own wishes, dreams, and desires,

– Ethel S. Person, MD, author of Feeling Strong: The Achievement of Authentic Power.

So if you have a tendency to help others too much at your own expense, commit to self care this year!   If you find that you can’t seem to make yourself a priority, then releasing subconscious barriers can help!   I’ve helped clients reduce their work week, and find more time to do the things that mattered.  It’s so much easier to prioritize yourself when your subconscious mind isn’t holding you back!   If you’d like to learn more, listen to my interview Releasing Subconscious Barriers, the Key to Health and Happiness, and call me at 1855 ENERJOY for a complimentary consultation.

How do you make New Year’s resolutions that stick?

Read my 7 Tips to Make your New Year’s Resolutions Stick!

Challenge Yourself Note Means Be Determined And Motivated” is courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Kindness spreads picture courtesy of : http://ucsdnews.ucsd.edu/archive/newsrel/soc/03-08ExperimentalFindings.asp
Thumbs Up Means Thanks A Lot And Approved” is courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Meditation by Young Woman” is courtesy of tiverylucky at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Follow by Email