Mindful Monday; Understanding Your Negative Patterns
It is almost that time of the year when everyone examines their failures/shortcomings of the previous years and vows to do/be better with a New Year’s resolution for the upcoming year. While I applaud the efforts to self improvement (I think that is something we should each be doing until the day we die) these efforts will almost always end in yet another failure if we don’t take the time to examine and get better understanding of the negative patterns of behavior that brought us to where we are. This week we are talking about how we can do some pre-work before we set our 2021 New Year’s Resolution to ensure success! This week’s topic builds on the previous weeks of “Mindful Eating” and “Self Love”. If you have not yet listened to those, I suggest you take a moment to catch up!
1. Write down 1-2 New Year’s resolutions you have for 2021
Write it down. Make sure whatever it is you choose is something that actually resonates with you, and not something that you think others expect from you. Make it meaningful TO YOU. Life is too short to waste trying to meet a standard that doesn’t match your personal values. For example, if your goal is the stereotypical “weight loss”, think about WHY that is your goal. Is it because you want to fit a societal expectation of “thinness” or someone else’s boundaries of “attractiveness”? OR is it because you want more energy, or to prevent a negative health trend (ie pre-diabetic, or high cholesterol) The motivation behind the goal matters and will determine your success. If your New Year’s Resolution doesn’t align with your values, then you will ultimately fail and feel even worse about yourself. And honestly, what is the point of spending your life trying to meet someone else’s expectations?
2. Write Down The Negative Behavior Patterns That Led You Here
What is it that brought you to adopt the negative behaviors/patterns that you want to change? Was it a survival mechanism? Comfort? Familial messaging? A life event? If you can retrace the behavior patterns back to the source, you can begin have a better understanding of how you will undo those negative patterns. For example, I am always resolving to become better organized. I wasn’t able to adopt an organizing tool that was effective for me until I looked back at my disorganization to see where/how it began. Turns out it comes from being raised in a chaotic household as a child. So this is where my comfort lies. Even though I love a neatly organized space, where I can easily find things and my mind can feel rested and at ease, it is not natural for me due to my childhood. Once I discovered that, I have been able to embrace a bit of the chaos with compassion while also pushing myself to keep it under control.
3. Develop a New Years Resolution That Includes Self Compassion
Use the data that you uncover to develop a New Years Resolution that will help become the best version of yourself while using compassion for the negative behaviors and habits that brought you here. Once you have a better understanding of yourself and where your behaviors stem from, you can build in baby steps that will move you forward towards lasting change – not just the 2 months of stereotypical resolutions! Those small little steps really add up and will create lasting, sustainable changes that resonate with you.
I am looking forward to hearing from all of you what you uncover about yourself during this process!
With Love & Gratitude,