It’s the start of another new year and one of my commitments to myself is to re-engage with blogging again. What better way to honour a ‘resolution’ than by writing about them! 2020 and 2021 passed in somewhat of a blur. Lockdowns and social distancing left a lot of us feeling like we’ve been scraping by. Taking one day at a time. And that’s OK! But as we head into 2022, with vaccines leading the way to a return to ‘normality’, it’s understandable if you’re hoping for more from this year. Here’s why you should be thinking about energy rather than resolutions in 2022.
What are your goals?
Before we talk about how you should be thinking, let’s talk about what you’re thinking of. Most people start a new year with one of the following:
- Health goals (lose weight/eat better/exercise more)
- Financial goals (earn more money/change jobs/save for a house)
- Home life goals (start a family/plan a wedding/home DIY)
- Personal goals (learn an instrument/travel more/spend more time with friends and family)
What exactly are you hoping to achieve this year? Is it realistic? The main reason resolutions aren’t kept is because they were never sustainable in the first place. If you’re coming out of your Christmas food coma on New Year’s Day and deciding that your New Year’s Resolution is going to be a strict no carbs, no sugar, no alcohol and four workouts a week kind of goal, then you’re not going to make it past week two. Your body’s sugar levels will crash, making you crave it more. (And my regular readers will know my thoughts on diet culture anyway. If you’re new around here, hello! Please take a look at some of my previous posts on The Diet Starts Never).
Why you should think about energy rather than resolutions in 2022
Like I mentioned earlier, if you start your new year with very rigid goals in mind, you’re more likely to give up sooner. Progress is not linear, which is why you need to be flexible with your outlook. There’s nothing wrong with setting targets but practising self-compassion is key to sustaining a positive attitude towards your goals. Rigid thinking is what leads to failure mentality which is what we want to avoid going into 2022.
I prefer to think about energy rather than resolutions. As yourself, What do I want to put my energy into this year? With this mentality, it doesn’t matter if you miss a gym session or only pick up that instrument once in a week. Take the time to reflect, either daily, weekly or monthly, and keep an eye on where your energy is being placed and how you might channel it to be more aligned with your goals.
How do I want to use my energy this year?
I know for a fact that my mental health is at it’s strongest when I am regularly moving my body (in whatever way serves me – dancing, walking my dog, weight lifting) and December is always a month when this gets neglected. The dark mornings and change to cold weather always snatches my motivation to be active and I get mild symptoms that are most reflective of Seasonal Affective Disorder. Therefore, the first way I want to spend my energy is kicking lethargy to the curb and getting my mojo back with regular movement.
I’ve also recently started playing the piano again, after not playing for nearly ten years. Another way I’m going to spend my energy is by regularly practising on my keyboard (in the hope that my fiancé will one day buy me a real piano).
Finally, as you might also know if you’re a regular reader, I’m training to become a counsellor. I’d like to put more energy into immersing myself into the counselling field, through reading and listening to podcasts. (I’d also like to embrace networking but this is an anxiety-provoking thought for me soooo… maybe next year?)
Life is unpredictable and can often get busy. It’s normal to not always be aligned with your goals. However, when we think in terms of energy, rather than resolutions, we’re less likely to get that failure complex. Practising self-awareness and staying calm through the troughs (which is normally a time when you’re resting or using your energy on more immediate problem-solving) will allow the progress to follow.
Let me know in the comments how you’re spending your energy!