Keeping New Year’s Resolutions, Step 1: Digest

January 9, 2018

Come New Year's day, we're all hung ho about making resolutions and doing things differently in the new year, but following up our intentions and implementing them is often challenging. What challenges do we face, and why is it so difficult? What can we do to make it more likely to succeed?

Come New Year's day, we're all hung ho about making resolutions and doing things differently in the new year, but following up our intentions and implementing them is often challenging. What challenges do we face, and why is it so difficult? What can we do to make it more likely to succeed?

One of the biggest things we do to undermine ourselves is to think we can march forward into a bright new life without releasing the old, or at least understanding that we haven't left behind the parts of us that reside in the shadow. In the myth of Persephone, the maiden descends into the underworld, and while she is down there eats six pomegranate seeds. She comes back, guaranteeing the return of Spring and sunshine and fuzzy bunnies, but because she has eaten the food of the dead she just return later, one month for every seed she ate.

We don't like to acknowledge cycles, or the darker parts of ourselves. We want to think we can do anything, whenever we want, and if we put enough effort into it we'll get what we want. And then we beat ourselves up when it doesn't work. We tell ourselves we suck, we're lazy, we're not good enough -- that if we had just wanted it more, we'd have done it. But what if there's nothing wrong with our desire and our effort or our intentions? What if the secret to success is somewhere else?

Often we don't get traction on our goals because we have not acknowledged the dark muck of our past. We turned our back on it to toast the coming of the light, thinking that was enough. These things that we've ignored, however, hold us back and keep us from forming the traction we need to move ahead. They can be emotions we haven't dealt with, ideas about ourselves we've had since childhood, images of our bodies that maybe we don't like but our ego sees as who we are.

In order to encourage new growth, stuff needs to compost. You need to work through who you were in the past, at least a little, to really change who you are in the future. This doesn't have to be awful and ugly - sometimes this just means seeing it and acknowledging it, and thanking it. Experience can be difficult, but it makes us who we are.

That pomegranate is beautiful, and was probably worth it.

If you'd like help gearing up for real change in the new year I'd love to work with you, whether it's a coaching, a short-term base-camp package, or a quick tarot reading to give you a visual kick-start. Check the web site for options!