At Mid-summer New Year Resolutions usually feel like a distant memory. This particular Mid-summer it feels like we celebrated 2020 on a different planet altogether. A rather bold Spring 2020 erased completely or radically adjusted our plans for the year for quite many of us unlike in any of the years I can remember, on a really mass scale.
I can only compare these times to mid 80-s when the AIDS arrived and there was that indescribable feeling in the air that the world was about to end. Seriously – there was no promise on how that new thing back then was going to be even managed.
And yet, the world didn’t end. Most of us survived. Now tests for AIDS are a routine in pregnancy screening and so on, everybody knows what it is and how it works, nobody frets about it, we just learned some new behaviours.
I trust the humanity is resilient and we will soon adjust to This New Thing which is Coronavirus.
Review of New Year Resolutions
Coming back to the 2020 New Year Resolutions, I think as it is always the case, what was good and thought carefully about then should still be equally good now. According to research time around New Year is a small but very interesting part of the year when we have an unusual window of free time on Christmas holidays and not that many temptations ‘to go outside and play’. So statistically people make use of this to think deeper about their life and what matters for them long term. Basically, we are naturally gearing to asking ourselves some Good Quality Questions.
Obviously, uniquely for 2020 here comes a side note of a temporary adjustment of lifestyle for many and an (imposed) total change of life direction of for some. Which makes a review of New Year Resolutions even more important as it may well turn into a new list altogether.
Midsummer New Year Resolutions
Review of New Year Resolutions is ideal to do midsummer as we are right about at mid year and by now it should be very clear what happened and what didn’t.
Ideally this one should be done on a nice beach with a big proud pen to cross out what we achieved (with a sense of deep satisfaction). A bottle of champagne would be appropriate perhaps. Or a very special smoothy, depending what you are after.
Seriously, if you achieved some of your main goals you have a reason to celebrate as this is a great spot to:
- dwell on a positive and deliberately create a memory of you praising yourself for your own actions
- feeling grateful for support you received in the process
- stepping in, seeing yourself and making yourself comfortable, feeling into, this new stage of your life where you are where you wanted to be 6 months ago.
No New Year Resolutions? Make them today!
Some argue that Midsummer is the best season for New Year’s Resolutions because you have the warmth of the sun and abundant unfolding of new growth and peak of nature to trigger and support a direct connection between thought and action.
In Acupuncture terms this will be an Yin and Yang balance. We dream and make plans in the Yin. To action them though we need plenty of Yang – which happens to be a natural energy of summer.
In summer we are more joyful and active – in TCM, Heart governs this seasons and so we are optimistic and willing to act, engage and create.
In summer we can easier start doing what we know we should be doing but what was too hard to start in other seasons. In fact, sun and open air and feeling of freedom and daring – our natural human environment – all support us in whatever actions we take.
Presents: if you had Personal Development focused presents, are you using them well?
In old times people would give each other things as presents.
And we still do and it’s still relevant sometimes but it’s also becoming more and more common to gift experiences and, with the rise of online learning, meaningful and affordable learning opportunities.
We gift each other (and ourselves) something which we feel is important for the person in this particular moment of time, which will help them to move closer to who they are and what they want to do or be (basically helping them to find an answer for the classic core Quality Questions). Usually we do it with long term interests and deep passions in mind, which might or might not be life’s pressing everyday priorities. More of a Soul food type of stuff.
Sites like Udemy flourish at Christmas, do attractive discounts ahead of time and long developed special gift options meaning there is a high demand.
However….there are chances that what you carefully thought about and decided on at New Year might have started and not continued. You know, life gets in the way type of thing which can override a shy new habit developing.
Where do you stand here? Have you completed your favourite courses?
If we started but didn’t finish – and still love the subject – may be it’s time to pick it up, or start if you haven’t even started and consider the next step if you did.
‘Clarity comes from engagement; it does not come from thought’
This is a quote from a really good TED talk I forgot the name of but I have it somewhere so I’ll update here at a later stage.
Meaning that no amount of dreaming, thinking, rationalising and overthinking using our logic will get us where we need/want to be. While obvious and useful first step before action, sometimes we get stuck on this stage trying to figure out the particulars without even trying to road test the essence .
Why midsummer is probably the best time for real goals is that after an Yin stage of initial dreaming and goal setting you – hopefully – by now had a really good chance to go through the Yang stage of trying to realise your New Year goals by road testing them so now is the stage to review, edit, change, adjust and make a revised plan for the rest of the year.
At mid-summer we should see either some results (or a promise of results, a trend) or why the goal it’s not possible/relevant. A diligent engagement over 6 months by itself should have directed, focused and crystallised what we have been doing and by now we should have a really good idea of exactly where we are at in this area.
Summer is a season of Fire
While still in nature-given Yang season we can use this supportive and robust energy to catch up with what we really wanted to achieve but simply didn’t have time or focus or energy or got distracted.
In TCM, summer is a season of Fire element associated with Heart representing a top of all organs system. Heart is like an Emperor who is making sure his subjects are happy and so we relax, we feel naturally more joyful and optimistic. In relaxed frame of being many things are possible which we don’t see in stress and work.
Heart energy is generous and we just see more and farther into our horizons. This long perspective can be crucial for overall view of our goals and could have being missed on contracting energy of deep introspection of Winter.
Holidays for the Soul
There are many ways do create Holidays for the Soul but goal revision or making new goals are really soul feeding at midsummer. If we forgot all about our plans and wishes and got lost completely it’ll get us back on track. In any case it will enhance reflecting on New Year goals clarifying what’s really important and still relevant and what was tried and turned out to be not so important and what new emerged.
We can then make a revised plan and cross out some entries. But basically goal revision should include some rest, good space and some soul work/body therapy to make final adjustments.
I propose to relax a bit from everything and reflect back on New Year Resolutions, it will be illuminating and nice; this will make a deeper connection to the Self and this will lead to better connection to others. When we are nurtured from inside we are more open to connect, give and receive.
Also, this review, being invaluable for reconnection and updating and formalising current life direction while being a Holiday for the Soul is completely free.
Put your Best Self outfit on
To do this fun but highly serious work of making a New Year Midsummer 2020 goal revision/goals/wishes setting list don’t forget to put your Best Energy Fancy Dress on.
You can do it by:
- getting some quality rest and getting into a generally good space or
- imagining stitching names of things you know you did manage to achieve on your outfit 🙂 or
- preferably both for best results.
Basically this step will reinforce:
- I can figure out what I want
- I can focus on it
- I can achieve what I want
This is a vital reference point for any new goal setting or a review: you will know that it will make sense to do it as you can do it, you did it before.
Important: Before you lose the battle to you inner or outer critic/sceptic, don’t worry: the ‘practical’ apron of scepticism with ‘yes, but…’ warnings firmly stitched all over it will always protect your fancy dress later – when you get to work on them.
The exercise: 20-5-1 list of Wishes and their Facilitation
If you did 2020 New Year Resolutions with me, you remember that in New Year Resolutions we made a list of 20 dreams/wants/goals (including the Wild Ones, just to exercise open mindedness).
Then we narrowed it down to 5 most important.
And then we finally chose the One. The One which is a core and the focus.
This was ‘What to do’.
Then we looked into Goals Facilitations: which support structures we need to create to make it realistically happen which is the ‘how to do it’.
Please refer to the list on the free download for the post to either review or make new goals.
Other Important Things to find in your list
- One Wanderer (this makes it from list to list, from year to year and always escapes)
- One Pain (you found this something which is ‘ouch this hurts’ response…)
- One Win (‘I did it!’)
- One Thank (‘I got a surprise/help’)
- One Joy (’It turned out to be even better!’)
- One Counterweight (if you succeeded chances are you started this new thing on the top of what you were already doing back then and now is the time to rebalance and integrate with a counterweight activity)
Are you running ‘away’ or ‘towards’?
There is ‘away from’ and ‘towards motivation’ when we make our goals which basically correspond to ‘want’ and ‘shouldn’t’. The ‘want’ will be to be serene for example, the related ‘shouldn’t’ would be to drink less.
If it’s ‘away from’ this is a goal based on fear and while it’s important for example to get rid of debt or drink less (out of fear or not) it is not a real goal. It’s a stepping stone at best. The real goal here would be ‘start saving money to be able to…’, ‘keep in top shape so I can…’.
Sometimes a re-phrase will do the job: ‘create more time (by working less) to be able to enjoy….’
The ‘shouldn’t’ might not work or we might truly need outside help with it as it might happened to be our blind spot – we all have this are where we are clueless, wander in the dark forever and feel hopeless, but in reality it’s just a blind spot – get a professional here, or coach, or at least a friend.
Time frame for goals review
It took me a couple of hours to make a new list of summer goals, revise original goals, and see what is there. Exciting afternoon spent which brought much clarity and actually happiness that some things I planned are moving along and figure themselves out.
Sure with the Win, Thank and Joy I found my Pain and Wanderer too. This too was illuminating as otherwise I won’t have detected them for what they are. Finally I found a Counterbalance as – reluctantly – put it as n1 on an updated list.
I truly am reluctant but the need in Counterbalance is plain and clear so wish me luck here 🙂
If you are totally new to the task it might take longer but every minute of it is totally worthwhile. Better still, be generous with yourself and have the whole weekend in summer time – in the nicest setting possible – to play with dreams, wishes, goals and facilitations.
Do the ‘logical’ work on Day 1 then have a nice relaxing evening preferably with some body work or a long bath and come back to the list on Day 2. Chances are that deep dreams and wishes will show up and also, a true priory will.
- When in doubt use classic life coaching wheel of 8 main areas of life
- Make them SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound)
- Create an appealing name for an activity related to a goal
- Set up Calendar reminder for n1 Goal and it’s Facilitation: if it doesn’t make it to the calendar it’s unlikely that it will be remembered especially for longer terms goals or goals with delayed starts. You can reschedule it but it should be on calendar.
If you would like to have support and work with me this is possible too, just ask.
Happy Midsummer goals review!