As we move out of this year and say good-bye to all the good times, bad times, and just times we prepare to say hello to the New Year we find ourselves making New Year resolutions. Some we will keep and some we will try our very best and still not meet the expectation. How do we make these New Year’s resolutions stick? I must admit I don’t make New Year’s resolutions but I set goals and I have found to make the goals meaningful and give it a real purpose so when I’m struggling to meet my goal, or just begin my goal I can look back at the intention for that particular goal. I have also learned recently that it takes 21 days to change a habit but 66 days to make it automatic without thought and just part of your life’s routine. Keep that in mind with whatever goal or resolution you set and make sure you stick with it long enough for it to first be a habit and second to become automatic.
I am setting the intention for daily meditation. I have been doing a lot of research and now with my yoga practice it has become even more important. Some might argue that meditation is just second to sleep on the scale of most important daily routines. This is a practice just like yoga and one must start out slowly and deliberately in order to reap the benefits of the quiet mind. I started a few weeks ago and only for 2 minutes. You will hear people say everyone has 2 minutes and that is true but everyone only has 2 minutes to do things they want to do. Even finding 2 minutes for mediation if it is not engrained in your routine is difficult so I have chosen to meditate the same time every day so it becomes automatic in my life routine.
I have however graduated to 5 minutes and will increase little by little until I feel I have reached my divine time. I don’t know how long or how long it will take to get there but making this part of my day is just becoming what I do like getting up and going for walk, or getting up and going to my spin class. I am truly at my best first thing in the morning so my perfect mediation time is right before getting into the shower. I know I will shower every day no matter what because I have been doing it my entire life and therefore before I do I give myself that time for mediation. This also means I don’t rush getting ready and therefore it slows down my entire day. It seems like a minor change but it has been really beneficial for me in many ways. At this point it is just becoming a habit but it will become automatic and although act of meditation might be automatic the actual meditation is a true practice.
Meditation is teaching me to quiet my mind, while also teaching me to be with my thoughts for a period of time. The idea is not to wipe away all thoughts but allow them in and let them go. Yoga is a sequence of postures to build strength in the body so that we can sit for a long time with our own thoughts. That is very difficult for some people and as you look around at people walking by themselves are they really by themselves or are they on their phones? Can two people walk side by side without a saying a word and just enjoy each other’s company? Many cannot. Is it possible to go to a restaurant by yourself and enjoy an incredible meal? Some find that act very scary and others who see you sitting there feel bad for you. What if you just feel good in your own skin, know you are a good person, and enjoy your own company? I say congratulations to you. If you aren’t there yet perhaps spending a few minutes completely by yourself with your thoughts and in your body might help you find the comfort for those very things.
Final thought, choose meaningful goals or New Year’s resolutions and give it 21 days to form the habit and 66 to make them automatic and enjoy what the New Year has to offer.