Did you make a New Year’s Resolution last year? How is your resolve, did you stick with it the entire year? How about prior years? Any resolutions that you made years ago that you are still practicing? Congratulations if you answered yes.
Regardless of our past today is a new day. Here are some simple tips to make resolutions we can stick with.
1. Clearly define what your resolution is and the details of what exactly you will be doing. What does success look like?
Meditation for me is like unlocking some secret world where I feel great and I see the truth that everything and everyone is beautiful and amazing. It took me a couple years to find the key or learn the combination, or more like a couple months once I committed to practicing daily.
Making that commitment was hard, why? Well how do I commit to something I don't understand or really even know what it is? For me it seemed like agreeing to eat a food everyday that I had yet to taste, what if I don't like it? What the heck is meditation anyway and how do I know if I'm doing it right? I had no clue nor did I know who to ask, nobody I knew meditated.
The first half dozen or so times I tried meditating I sat there feeling foolish and nothing happened...
Are we earthlings hard wired to discard and dump our waste wherever we please? Are we born litterers? If we take an honest look at our cities and in nature can we find any evidence to the contrary? What if being litterers is in fact a good and necessary practice? Does the survival of our planet depends on us dumping wherever we want?
As far back as I can remember I saw road signs that said $1000 fine for littering, and along that same road there was plenty of litter. Birds seem to leave their food scraps and poop wherever they want, same with fish and wild animals. Babies, kittens, and puppies make a mess with their food and pee and poop anywhere and everywhere. Judging by all the trash I see on the beach adults are also well practiced litterers…
The video below reminded me of why I am committed to surf gear that is renewable (can be regenerated within a generation), biodegradable (the earth can naturally recycle it and it has a healthy place in the food chain), and non-toxic (the collection and production of the materials do not pollute our air, land, water, animals, or people)…
We learn to talk by imitating those around us, this is why we speak the same language as our parents or caregivers. It seems to me that relationship is the same way, we learn to relate by copying those around us.
Learning to speak a foreign language is much easier when it is immersion, it's easier to learn Spanish when living in Mexico. The opposite is also true in that it is much harder to learn healthy relationship skills when surrounded by people who relate poorly.
Speaking our native tongue is easy, even if it's Pig Latin, gibberish, or Klingon, speaking it would be effortless on our part if we grew up immersed in this language. This is why dysfunctional relating comes so easily and is normal to us, since birth many of us have been surrounded by examples of what not to do. Relationships where no one is getting their needs met nor are they unconditionally loved...
After a gorgeous fun day at the lake we tried a new local restaurant with two other families. While eating one father said he couldn't trade food because they are vegetarian. My wife commented how I don't understand vegetarianism and asked him why they don't eat meat.
Internally, as I was listening to him, my ego was in full on battle mode and finding inconsistencies, hypocrisy, and all kinds of reasons why his choice is wrong. If I had voiced my inner lawyer, what are the chances that he would say "oh wow I never thought of that, I've been such a fool and I'm going to start eating meat right now, thanks so much for educating me"? Probably about as likely as him convincing me to stop eating meat and changing my diet.
Later that evening I remembered the principle of common ground...