The word RESOLUTION does not resonate with me. I prefer GOALS. I have taken mine from a book that I thought I reviewed some time ago: The Four Agreements (for a better life) by Don Miguel Ruiz, but discovered I had only mentioned I was going to review it and never did. My bad!
However, the New Year is a perfect time to read this 5″X7″ “wisdom book,” as it is called. Briefly, here are the four agreements, which seem simple enough but not always easy to follow. These are taken directly from the inside cover of the book, published by AmberAllen.com. For more info on how to continue learning from this book (which I did), go to TheFourAgreements.com. (BTW, my older daughter sent me this book as a gift. Again, I am learning from my children!) My comments are in italics with my initials of my first name: es
- BE IMPECCABLE WITH YOUR WORD. Speak with Integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love. (As a writer, this is the one I relate to the most. es)
- DON’T TAKE ANYTHING PERSONALLY. Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won;t be a victim of needless suffering. (This one is the most difficult one for me to embrace and practice. es)
- DON’T MAKE ASSUMPTIONS: Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you an to avoid misunderstandings, sadness, and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life. (As I grow older I am more able to do this. es)
- ALWAYS DO YOU BEST: Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstances, always do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret. (I was raised to do my best, so this one might be the one I can do most readily. es)
The Four Agreements can easily be four goals or four resolutions, but I suggest you purchase and read the book from cover to cover, because each page is packed with insights and words of wisdom, or as my college professor used to say on the last class before a quiz: Gems for the Exam! Instead, each of the agreements is a gem for living your life more fruitfully and happily, as the book explains. When deciding which goals or resolutions to choose to examine and manifest, remember to choose happiness as your way of life, since all of life is a choice with consequences, so if you make better choices, you will live a better life. (This is what I gleaned from the book and subsequent online information, not my original words.)
The October/November issue of AARP Magazine had an interesting article with photos from different stages of Queen Elizabeth II’s life, entitled “Life Lessons from the Queen” that I found quite interesting. At 94, she has had many Life Lessons! Here are the “lessons,” which could also be New Year’s resolutions or goals. (For the entire article, go to: https://www.aarp.org/entertainment/celebrities/aarp-the-magazine-presents. Scroll down on the right hand side to The queen’s 10 rules for remaining vital.)
1. Recharge your will power. The article notes that research demonstrates willpower is like a battery that needs recharging routinely. For the queen, she takes a break at teatime to recharge her batteries.
2. Stick to a schedule. The queen has a strict daily regimen that includes writing in her journal at the end of every day.
3. Develop your sense of purpose. Studies show that embracing a dedicated purpose or cause helps with immunity and reduces the risk of Alzheimer’s.
4. Serve others. The queen believes that by giving herself to others helps her put her own worries in perspective.
5. Sweeten the self-talk. Since the queen believes that the problem with gloom is that it feeds upon itself, she is able to dial down negative mind chatter.
6. Brush aside vanity. The queen is able to self-distance so that when the tabloids malign her, she can remain detached and sometimes be an amused “spectator.”
7. Never stop playing. The queen takes time almost every day to enjoy herself, mainly horseback riding. Staying active physically has many benefits, such as remaining flexible and keeping the brain in a youthful, flexible state.
8. Keep the faith. The queen attends church weekly and also prays before bedtime. (Whatever your faith, don’t be afraid to exercise it. es)
9. Be open to change. Elizabeth II has never stopped adapting or learning. A 2002 quote by the queen, noted in the AARP magazine is: “Change has become a constant. The way we embrace it defines our future.”
10. Cherish your crowning years. According to the article, the queen is more approachable and smiles more. This supports a scientific concept called the U-bend of life, that is, “the world’s happiest people tend to be those in their 80s and beyond.”
While these are not resolutions, per se, they may be good reminders of how to live our lives with more meaning, especially post-COVID. How has 2020 changed your way of thinking, acting, and being the best of who you# are? Which of the queen’s life lessons resonate with you? For me, they are #3, 7, and #10, although all of them have significance.
From Vivian Goldschmidt’s Save Institute Website is another set of resolutions that have to do with the New Year, mostly aimed at the health of your bones in the coming year. Here’s the link: https://saveourbones.com/7-tips-to-help-you-stick-to-your-new-years-bone-health-resolutions/
The website is an excellent one covering many aspects of health, especially bone health.
Whatever decisions you make for the new year 2021,
I wish you success and fulfillment of your dreams & goals!