Four days into the New Year and I have already been asked several times if I have any resolutions. The truth is that I am not a resolution person. Though passionate and ambitious, I turn into the fastest quitter this side of the Mason-Dixon the moment that large and daunting goals begin to hover over me. I operate best on my own terms, ever the bull-headed Taurus.
The closest I come to resolutions are my words of the year. This is the second year which I have chosen a word, and I do intend to let JOY guide me, in the same way that Linger was my touchstone last year. I would not say, however, that I “resolve” to be joyful. No, in choosing JOY, I was merely putting out into the Universe that which I long to find again. I miss the lightness in my heart that comes with being joyful. I miss the singularity of feeling that is true JOY. My emotional life has lately been… overpopulated. JOY, I hope, will help me in simplifying my heart.
In seeking JOY, however, I do have some supporting actions that I plan to put in place. So, in the spirit of resolution, I have come up with 5 New Year’s Resolutions for Busy & Tired Moms/Dads/Humans. Now these, my friends, are my kind of resolutions. Won’t you join me in resolving to…
- Take time for yourself. No, really. Take a personal day, at least once this year, when you are not sick and when no other person in your house is sick and when your partner and/or children have work/school/someplace else to be for a minimum of 455 minutes, or 7 hours and 35 minutes, or the consecutive running time of Harry Potters 1-3, which yes, is how I calculated that time. Then, do what you will with that time. Get a massage, clean your house, bake brownies, sit in the backyard and read a book, watch Harry Potters 1-3 while pounding hot tea. Do whatever your soul needs in that moment, and do it without guilt. You deserve it.
- Use Pinterest to get hairstyle ideas, find new throw pillows for your couch, expand your recipe collection, but the second that you start feeling bad about yourself because you’ve never read Thoreau while dangling your feet off the side of a dock in Bora Bora, or because you don’t know, for the life of you, what the fuck truffle oil is, close Pinterest and walk away. You are not defined by what you do not know, or what you have not done. Let me say that again.You are not defined by what you do not know, or what you have not done. Pinterest is about collecting things that interest you, not about collecting things that depress you. Use it the right way, or don’t use it at all.
- While we’re on the topic of things you cannot do… learn a Thing or go do something that you’ve never done before! You know, if you want. You definitely don’t have to, but sometimes learning to do something new can really give you a boost. Without thinking too hard, what is one thing that you cannot do, but wish you could? Alternatively, what is one thing you’ve never done or experienced, but wish that you had? Now, why don’t you? I mean, if your goal is to learn the intricacies of neuroscience, maybe it’s not that easy, but for most skills, hobbies or experiences, it is as easy as putting one foot in front of the other. You are born knowing how to do virtually nothing besides eat, poop and cry. Yet you managed language, walking, running, and freaking ALGEBRA! If you want to learn to knit, or forage wild mushrooms, get after it! Take yourself to a library, find a class, take lessons. Expand yourself. Learn a Thing! Do a Thing!
- Let yourself off the hook for __________. House hasn’t been properly cleaned in goodness knows how long? Let yourself off the hook. Children ate cheese on white bread for dinner last night (and the 3 nights before that)? Let yourself off the hook. Whatever it is that you’re beating yourself up about – let yourself off the hook. Chances are that you’ve done a million things to be proud of in the interim anyways, so stop hassling yourself and cut yourself some slack.
- Ask. For. Help. Whatever it is that you are trying to do by yourself and struggling at – ask for help. Laundry piling up? Dinner seem like a daunting task? Running too close on a work deadline? No idea how to help your child with this new wizard math that they seem to be learning? Feeling depressed? Anxious? Scared? ASK FOR HELP. There are resources for every problem and in the enduring words of the Paw Patrol, (yes, I have a 3 year old) No job is too big, no pup is too small. That sort of applies here… right?
Oh hell, what do I know, I haven’t slept more than 5 hours a night for the last 3 nights. Wait, WAIT… I’m gonna let myself off the hook for that. Ahhhh… I feel better already.
Here’s to resolving to be easier on ourselves in 2016.
Peace and love to you, friends.