Well, here we are at the beginning of a new year again and resolutions are everywhere. I used to make some resolutions just for the new year and after a few years it felt like I was just buying into what the media thinks is best for me.
From the tender age of 10 or 11 I would have the resolution to lose weight - this would be my year to finally get in shape and look stunning in a bikini! Every year I would find I would be lying to myself as I hadn't kept it up and didn't even know where to start in many cases. Then I would feel bad so I would eat, then remember I was supposed to be losing weight and resolve to do better...tomorrow. The funny/sad thing is I can look back and think I really wasn't fat back then. Maybe only 10 pounds to lose or some toning but certainly not the big fat fatty I thought I was. Will I look back at me now when I'm sixty and think I was stupid to think about my weight then? Probably. I chastise myself less now and eat what I want when I want. I can never have the body of a 20 year old because I'm not 20, regardless of what the media tells me.
One thing I did learn from Martha Beck is how to break down goals into ridiculously simple steps. Using the common resolution of start exercising more: I will work out for an hour a day four days a week! Well, I may keep that resolution for about a day. Maybe two. Then it will be too hard to get to the gym or do the work or whatever. Then I will feel bad that once again I can't even keep my word to myself. Martha Beck's idea is to break that goal down into steps that are so easy that you roll your eyes at the very concept of it, and build from there. So you want to work out? Ok, how about for two days a week instead of four? One day? Half hour a day? More like, get your workout clothes out and look at them. Maybe touch your workout equipment. Put your sneakers on. Nothing more, nothing less. When you have mastered the tiny step, add another tiny step. Put on your sneakers and step outside, then go back in. Sit on your workout equipment. That sort of thing. Eventually it will become routine to do it and it will be a part of your day, and it will be easier to follow through. And most importantly not feeling like you are lying to yourself and unable to keep a goal.
Using this logic, I could do so many things! I am terribly inflexible due to me pushing my body beyond it's resources at work all the time. Yoga is a good idea and I know it. Maybe I will simply touch the yoga mat each day until that's normal. Then I'll unroll it. Maybe even sit on it one day :)