Why New Year ReSOULutions Fail and how to Succeed!by Teri Jo Wheeler on 01/09/19
Each year so many of us start out super enthusiastic about change. Yet, by day 3 or 4 or week 3 or 4 of the new year we fail. Why?
The biggest reason is because we live in Multiplicity, or many parts of self. We have multiple 'I's - I want this, I feel this, I need this, I believe this, I think this, I don't want that.
Overtime, because of unprocessed pain and trauma, we mentally and emotionally split off parts of ourself from our sense of original wholeness and these parts eventually take on a life of their own. They are not real, but are mental constructs we create to protect ourself and help us make sense of the world. We keep these parts alive by continually feeding them (listening and giving into their demands). So there is a part that loves wine, a part that wants sobriety, a part that rationalizes, a part that feels, one that loves shopping, another that is a minimalist, a part that is cluttered, the good girl, rebel, mediator, meditator, jokester, and so on.
There is a part that wants to do better, to self-improve, and it thinks the New Year is a great time for change. Unfortunately, this part often gets taken over by another part (ego/false self) which sets up grandiose, unrealistic and overly ambitious resolutions. A pure part started the process wanting change, but the ego/false self comes in wanting BIG CHANGE and RESULTS NOW. It doesn't take into account time, energy and the reality of our schedules. It also does not take into account our habitual patterns and default emotional comfort zones that have been conditioned over time. In other words, it forgets about the other parts which will eventually surface for their piece of the pie.
So this part sets these lofty goals - I am going to walk 12000 steps, go to the gym for an hour workout 4 times a week, eat zero sugar, sleep 8 hours a night, and drink 3 gallons of water everyday. Fantastic! We are pumped and ALL IN on day 1, 2, 3.... maybe even the first whole month. And then, one of the parts finds a reason to sabotage our efforts, often because the original intentions were too many, too much.
Not to worry on this though... Multiplicity has you covered because as soon as you fail at completing your commitment... as a protection, another part of you will come in with convincing excuses and justifications - I got sick, a friend needed my help, work got too stressful, the kids needed me, I will get back to it tomorrow, I can't be perfect, etc. Yes life happens, and we need to make space for this... but often when life happens, we don't actually get back on track. This is again because of multiplicity and ego. The ego (various parts) wants all the rewards with little-to-no effort.
Another way we can fail is by setting unmeasurable (aka unaccountable) goals - I am going to be more loving, less judgmental, I am going to drink less, eat more raw foods, etc. This sounds good but is simply another way of spinning on the hamster wheel.
Here are a few tips to succeed with your ReSOULutions:
1) Set Measurable Baby-Step Actions you can do daily - I do 32 day processes and started my first one on January 1st with 5 self-care goals daily - minimum of 6,000 Steps, 32 ounces of Water, Meditate 10 minutes, Conversation with my Higher Self for 25 minutes, and Study A Course in Miracles lesson.
2) When possible, get as many of your self-care practices done early in the day.
3) Track your progress on some sort of checklist daily - in a.m. and p.m.
4) Get the support of a friend (I started a 32 Day Facebook group).
5) If you miss a day, begin again the very next day.
6) Be gentle with yourself, but not a pushover. There are parts of us that do not want to do anything hard, boring, ordinary or uncomfortable. Those parts (hint: ego/false self) should not be leading.