Spring Renewal

New Year’s Resolution take two!

Okay, I am going to be completely honest here — I lie to myself. A lot. The first of the year, I tell myself that I’m going to do these incredible things. I’m going to defy the logic of my track record, that shows my level of “follow through” to be abundantly low, and make a slew of proclamations that I will strictly adhere to because it’s a New Year. Well…it’s mid-March and I have successfully completed

none of my tasks.

I had only one resolution this year. An extremely dense, single resolution. It was to give something up each and every month to experiment with my strength of restraint and refraining from pleasurable or habitual things. I also wanted to have a conservation with my inner self about how I dealt with those limitations. Out the gate, I had two big issues:

  1. January was off the table. I was going to be on a cruise the first 5 days of the month so I chose not to limit myself while on vacation. So with my logic I figured, I couldn’t do the entire month so throw the whole month away.
  2. I lacked a vision. I only had February planned. I was treating the rest of the year as a ‘do as you go’ plan.

February came and I chose to go vegan. I wanted to start strong and I also wanted to incorporate that limitation choice with Black History Month and its symbolism with the plight of my ancestors. The first half went pretty well. But I think part of that success was due to the high stress levels I was experiencing at the time. When I exhibit high stress levels, due to life just kicking my ass (which is my term for something else we’ll discuss in a later blog post), I don’t eat. I completely lost my appetite, which turned out be beneficial with my veganism attempt. But when my appetite came back, I was still in the ‘life-kicking-ass’ stage (baby steps), so my circumstances rendered me incapable of fully committing to the diet strictly. All of this is just a better way of me saying “I cheated!” I went back to the diet, but I had bumps along the way about every other day, until the month was over.

Side note: Let’s just keep this between us. I nagged my boyfriend to join me on this vegan journey. He did and he fared far better than me. I don’t think he cheated once. Towards the end of the month I wasn’t as forthcoming with my indiscretions as I should have been. His restraint pissed me off. He was too good.

So now here I am: mid-March with no limitation. My failure with February frightened me and I still haven’t planned out the rest of the year.  I almost resolved to just forget about the challenge and to forget about resolutions period. However, as spring is swiftly approaching and I’m gearing up for spring cleaning, it occurred to me that I could use that as an opportunity for Spring Renewal from within. Hear me out!

I take advantage of the practice of spring cleaning every year because my house is always in dire need of one. Chicago winters wreak havoc on my home and my productivity levels. So I truly enjoy when the weather starts to change, the days grow longer, and I can throw my winter clothes in a bag and forget about them, hopefully. You never know with Chicago weather. If I can rejuvenate my home for spring, why I can’t I do the same to myself? Am I right? So that’s exactly what I’m going to do and I would encourage others to do the same. Take the change of seasons as an opportunity to evaluate your year so far. Ask yourself:

  • How do I feel right now?
  • Am I on track with the goals I’ve set for myself?
  • Am I healthy, in mind and body?
  • In what areas have I neglected my goals?
  • Do I want the same resolutions I set at the beginning of the year?
  • What are my new goals?
  • If I’m sticking to my original goals, what can I do differently to approach them?

I’m asking myself those questions right now! I will reflect on whether my original resolution is still a journey I want to embark on. To assist me in my self reflection, I will:

  • Meditate
  • Have an internal conversation with myself
  • Be truthful.
  • Talk to others
  • Check in with my significant other, family, and friends
  • Write down what I’m feeling 

I encourage you to do the same! If you don’t have a journal, just use a spare sheet of paper, the back of a bill, an envelope, whatever. Put your feelings out into the universe. Visualize the changes you want to see. Harness the energy of the positive changes in the atmosphere and use it towards your renewal process. It’s amazing how the added exposure of sunlight can ignite good energy in the environment. Take advantage of it!

Let us know how you renew yourself or if any these tips work for you!



Photo by Takuma Kimura. Acquired through OGQ Backgrounds HD. https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/legalcode



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