For whatever reason I have always had a certain affinity for springtime. Perhaps it is because my birthday happens to be the first day of Spring and that felt special to me. From a young age I have found myself seeking to find meaning and understanding of the world around me, and it felt symbolic that I would be born on a day that, throughout the plant and animal world, represents new beginnings and fresh starts.
As a culture we tend to reserve the New Year as our time for fresh starts and go-get-em ambitions. We also have a tendency to be clouded by a black and white belief system where we see ourselves through a narrow lens of success and failure, and give up on ourselves as soon as we feel we have lost steam. We lose sight of our adaptability and the capacity to create change in our lives and come Springtime many have most likely given up on our goals and resolutions for the year.
However, part of our humanity is the constant ebb and flow of our accomplishments. We are going to try and sometimes we will succeed and sometimes we won’t but then we get to try again, either at the same thing or trying something new.
If you have found yourself offtrack, here are a few suggestions to help you move forward this Spring:
1. Revisit your New Year’s Resolutions and Goals.
Even if you didn’t set a “resolution” per se, it’s a good idea to check back in with ourselves every three months or so and evaluate what’s working and what’s not. What new opportunities and challenges have come our way and how have our priorities and goals shifted. If you have found yourself frustrated and discouraged with your progress, or even given up completely, identify where exactly the roadblock hit. *Helpful hint: it’s most likely a fear or limiting belief within you. If you’re still right on track and haven’t identified any limitations or struggles, great, keep on doing what you’re doing! If not, see number 2.
2. Conquer the Limiting Belief that is Keeping you Stuck.
I know, easier said than done. But it is possible. Most of us walk around operating from beliefs that we picked up when we were little and are mostly unconscious. However, we actually have a choice over what we want to believe in. If your life isn’t working out with your current beliefs, what do you have to lose by trying out some new ones. Take them for an imaginary test drive before you adopt them as your own to determine if they’ll get you where you want to go. Play out the feelings and behaviors that will evolve from a new belief and see if they line up with your life’s goals.
3. Accept the Fact that Change is Hard and Uncomfortable.
Long lasting change asks us to be disciplined, consistent, and persistent, yet most of run at the slightest rub of discomfort. If we don’t allow ourselves to experience the discomfort we would have no reason to make changes.
4. Change the Voices in Your Head.
Most of us are our own worst critics and very few us actually grow in toxic environments. Your thoughts can be vital nutrients to emotional health and overall success, or they can be poisonous toxins. If you want to be successful in creating a fulfilling life, you need to have a positive outlook toward life. Life will test you, again and again. If you give in to internal negativity, it is highly unlikely that you will reach the goals you have set for yourself.
5. Congratulate Yourself for Reconnecting to Your Goals.
Most of us want change and we want it yesterday. Change doesn’t happen as quickly as we would like and so we give up. And then we continue to beat ourselves up with shame and judgment for not making the change happen. Stop the cycle. Invite yourself to create a daily practice in which you acknowledge the successes you’ve had since starting your journey, and recognize the steps you took today that are helping you get to where you want to go.
6. Just Do It.
How much time have you wasted in your life waiting for the mood to strike you or until you felt ready to do something? Your head will likely tell you there is no point to taking action because you’ve already failed; you have to do it anyway. We can’t think our way into good action, we have to act our way into good thinking. If you want to create positive changes in your life, you need to take action and embrace moments of opportunity, even though you probably won’t ever feel 100% ready for them.
The reality is, we can make a resolution anytime we want, and if we stumble along the way that doesn’t mean we can’t pick right back up and keep going; it is a process, and it’s about progress, NOT PERFECTION!