Make a "New" New Year's Resolution: Change Your Attitude
by Dr. Dale V. Atkins, January 2006
The Same Ole’ New Year’s Resolution
New Year's Resolutions are often about committing to an exercise program, losing those extra 20 lbs, or stopping smoking. While all of these are likely be terrific for your health, are usually begun with great promise and enthusiasm, and are made with the hope that your life will be better, funny thing is that often our New Year's resolutions from one year to the next are exactly the same.
A “New” New Year’s Resolution
How about making this year the year of a different kind of resolution? Changing our attitude about something or someone (including ourselves) can be a refreshing start to the New Year. So often our attitudes remain unchanged and unchallenged; we never question whether they still serve us well or if they restrict us, holding us back.
Attitude Adjustment can Enhance our Lives Immeasurably
How many times have your own or other people's opinions prevented you from doing or trying something? “I always wanted to go skydiving but my friends will think I’m crazy.” “I would like to take an art class but I can't draw.” “I would like to learn to play the piano but I was never very good at it when I was a kid.” “I would like to travel but I don' t have a companion.” “I would like to dance but don't have a partner.”
By changing our attitude we can try things we thought we were "unable" to do and have experiences that will open our minds to incredible possibilities. Here are some Sanity Savers to help you get started to change your attitude.
1. No Challenge. No Change - If you don't give yourself a challenge there can be no change and without change there is no growth. Ask yourself, “How can I be continually challenged?”
2. Meet People Who are Different from You - Step out and don't limit yourself to your usual group (age, culture, race). Find those with similar interests but who are from different backgrounds. Meet and be with people who are both younger and older than you. Learn from their experiences.
3. You Are Never Too Old or Too Young to Change Your Self Image - Daily events fluctuate and influence your ability to stay focused, adaptable, happy and positive. The stronger and more resilient your sense of self, the better equipped you are to deal with all of what life presents.
4. Be Aware of Your Patterns - When we don’t notice our patterns we get in our own way. How can we possibly move forward in life if we are bound by behavior or images that elude us?
5. Be Conscious and Present - By being fully aware, we can accept, reject or change that which we don’t want into something that can be helpful and productive.
6. Be Eager for Personal Growth - Seek knowledge, adventure and friendship. Do not confine yourself to a familiar road, traveling along paths others have gone or mapped out for you. Leave the familiar path from time to time. Be adventurous. Find your element; never stop searching. Continue your quest in life. It is all about growth!
7. Be Resilient - Even if you have experienced a serious set back or loss, it is part your life's story. You can integrate all of it. Just as a forest is replanted after extensive logging, resilient people figure out ways to adapt to what has been taken from them by time and/or circumstance.
8. Find Your True Self Worth - All of us have value; no matter how great or small your public recognition and reputation. True self worth comes from your personal inner resources and appreciation of your own self.
9. Maintain a Good Self Image - Combine flattery and critical self-analysis. Don’ t waste time or energy putting yourself down. Focus on, emphasize, and live in way that is consistent with your core values.
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