By Tony and Missy Caldwell
Don’t make a New Year’s Resolution. Start a Self Care Revolution.
We often think of the New Year as a time to hit the reset button in some area of our lives. This often comes in the form of setting resolutions. Ultimately, resolutions are statements of intent so they are really about will power; but, revolution is different, because revolution is not just about change. Revolution is always about truth.
Will power will fail you, often times as early as the second week in January. However, much more is possible when you identify what your self-care needs are and then make a commitment to that.
It’s about coming into your own health, not about punishment or trying to be good enough. You are already good enough. Start from there. Self-care requires inner work. No fad diet, calorie counting, or latest fitness craze is a substitute for a commitment to being honest with ourselves.
When we make resolutions, we make ourselves into a project. And when we make ourselves into a project, we are, in essence, objectifying ourselves. Self-care is not about being a fitter, better version of ourselves—it’s about relating to ourselves ethically. We all have diverse needs, so it is also about meeting ourselves where we are and honoring our own individual bodies, minds and spirits.
No one can tell you exactly what you need in order to care for yourself properly. One must be still and take an honest look within to determine what is needed. What keeps us running to things that are not working for us? What keeps us running from being still, looking within and taking responsibility for our own self-care? Ask yourself this, “Where am I headed for disaster? Is it in my work, eating habits, negative self talk, my relationships, my spiritual life, exercise, parenting?”
We have to be soft enough to look within ourselves and fierce enough to meet the challenge of what we find there. If you are critical, judging, or comparing yourself to others, then that is your work. If you are impatient or can’t relax, that is your work. If you are eating fast food each day and your health is declining, that is your work. That is part of your revolution, to begin to work with these internal states daily and to change the tired storylines that block your success in the area of self-care. Revolutionizing how you relate to yourself and then ultimately to others is inner work.
A personal revolution is about making amends with the parts of yourself that you have failed to take good care of. For real life change, we have to be willing to surrender all the parts of ourselves for transformation. It’s not enough to work on our bodies and lives just on the surface. We must also look within and take responsibility for changing any part our lifestyle that does not honor our new commitment to wholeness.
Every behavior that we wish to change is driven by something in our inner world. None of us are exempt from this. If we want real and lasting change we must go inward, find what ails us, and nurture it back to health. The self-care revolution is rooted in love.