Fresh Start? First of the Month? On Monday? How about TODAY.

February 23rd, 2011 by Amy Gonsalves Leave a reply »

I completely understand the desire to start a New Thing like working out or eating right or losing weight with a clean slate.  I understand the thought that “this time will be different.” 

A fresh new notebook at the start of school has that same special quality of newness: the book is clean, no bent corners, no scuffed edges, just a sea of possibilities unmarred by reality.

Now think about that same notebook at the end of the school year.  It spent several months smashed into a bag and lofted across the room.  It probably has some chocolate smears on some of the pages (and a few blood smears if you check like I do) and you may just be so sick of the subject you wrote inside that you want to never ever see it again.  Do you even know where it is anymore? 

Knowing that we repeat this excitement and disappointment undulation with most of our goals can cause us to procrastinate making a positive change.

It’s really easy to say “I’ll start next month.  The first of the month.  I can start then and it will just be better that way.“  It sounds a load better than the part that we aren’t saying: “it gives me time to live it up before I have to start.”

I just worry that we make the process seem bigger than it is when we anticipate starting fresh.  As we see it looming, our anxiety levels increase.  We know we have disappointed ourselves in the past and we fear we will do so again.

See, here’s the thing: your body doesn’t know what calendar day it is.  It doesn’t know that you are wearing a new outfit or that your cupboards may have some junk food in them.

Your body only knows what you are doing right this minute to take care of it. 

And right this minute, you can do something different.  You don’t have to wait!  You can break the cycle of anticipation and disappointment, and you can banish feelings of failure, just by changing how you begin the process. 

If you make beginning a New Thing less of a Big Deal and more of a subtle shift in priorities, you may just be able to make some Big Changes without a lot of unnecessary stress.

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1 comment

  1. Peggy says:

    I feel this was directed at me… :)

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