It’s THAT time of year again. The time when we promise ourselves that we will lose weight, read more, learn French, or accomplish one of the millions of things we try and fail each January.

At some point in history, someone decided that a fresh set of 12 months was the perfect time to become a new person. We swear to ourselves that we will change but don’t, and then feel bad about ourselves. We try and fail to fulfill these promises the following January and experience the same or greater feelings of failure and guilt. Researchers have found that goals set out of a tradition fill people with stress and are less likely to be achieved. The best way to end this cycle of shame is not to start it.

Instead of creating resolutions, try setting intentions for the new year. Intentions should be positive improvements to your current self. Set intentions to develop an enhanced version of yourself. This may mean practicing mindfulness, relaxing more often, or breathing from the abdomen.

Please don’t put so much pressure on the beginning of the year. The last six weeks of the year are stressful. There is no need to add more anxiety to these days. Change can happen at any time of the year.

Or, maybe you are good enough as you are.

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