Like turtles, snakes and bears, this is the time of year where animals hibernate and slow down. Why do all of us want to start the year with the “GO GO GO, DO DO DO” laundry list mentality? The holidays are such a hustle and then New Years comes and we’re rushing to CHANGE ourselves through our new resolutions that always seem to be the same every year; diet, exercise etc…. And we all try to make these resolutions a reality in the first few weeks of January and then have them be long abandoned by February feeling defeated and a lost cause. Ease into the new year this January.
Why don’t we do something different this year? We can change our mindset instead of trying to reinvent ourselves and our lives. Let’s channel our inner turtle and sloooow it down.
“If you focus on results, you will never change. If you focus on change, you will get results” Jack Dixon
With this thought of changing my mindset, I started thinking about one of my favorite sayings, “work smarter, not harder.” I tend to over schedule and not give myself enough time to just relax and slow down. The constant moving leads to me being tired and overworked and wishing I could just STOP – all of it. But I love what I do, and I know there is a way to find more ease where I can create, teach, learn and share with others, but not feel like I’m going, going, going. Switching my mindset to SLOW instead of DO is already starting to help.
So I chose my word of the year as EASE. This means that I vow to rest and slow down more this winter (and the rest of the year), while still moving my biz forward, teaching classes and getting things done. Do you have an endless list in your head of what you need to do at all time? This is just not helpful and makes it very hard to find that balance.
I’m choosing these FIVE ways of changing my MINDSET and bringing more EASE into my year, starting with this winter, a time of slow, rest, re-charge and relaxation. (Just like those winter animals I teach the kids about).
5 Ways to change our Mindset and bring more EASE into the New Year:
1 ) Start your day with a morning mindset routine.
Think about what you want for your day. It could be a to-do list, something you are looking forward to, a few things you want to remind yourself to do (take breaks! drink water! mindful minute!) Whatever you need to create that mindset for the day. We all have a lot to do in the morning with getting our kids ready for school, ourselves to work, etc. Getting up a little earlier has been a goal of mine for years so I can have that morning time for myself before tending to others. I still really struggle with it and then it leads to my feeling bad for not doing it.
- Tip: Try doing it the night before and write yourself a note, or list or in your journal and leave it on the kitchen counter or on your desk (if you work from home like me!).
2) Let’s nurture positive moments and wins rather than berate ourselves.
Enjoying my warm cup of lemon water while getting my son ready for school, rather than berating myself for not getting up earlier to meditate, exercise, journal, write my morning mindset, etc. If we change our mindset to focus on the things we actually do, then what we didn’t do, everything we actually accomplish in a day is a win. If I can get my son to school on time, without losing my patience, it’s a win!
3) Make daily choices rather than lofty resolutions for the entire year.
Choosing something healthy each day that makes me feel good – like taking a mindful minute, doing my home yoga practice, or even just making myself tea in the middle of my day – rather than denying myself for an entire year. Breaking it down like that seems WAY more manageable.
- One thing that I knew that would help me incorporate more of a daily home yoga practice was to form a group to hold me accountable and to provide encouragement.This year I have taken charge of my annual 30 day yoga challenge journey (Yoga with Adriene) by starting my own facebook group, inviting friends to join and holding each other accountable. You know what? It’s making this more fun, and it’s bringing together a community of my peeps from all over the world to do this TOGETHER. I would like to make it last the whole year (not just the 30 days) but will take it one day at a time- and maybe it eventually sparks something bigger. We all went into it with our own ideas of how to bring in a daily home practice. We are all on our own individual timelines. It’s about bringing in more healthy habits in a way that feels good to you and works for your life. Some of the people in the group have never done yoga before! Some created their own space to practice because of it. We are using this to change our mindset and create a healthy habit that just becomes part of our daily routine that we miss when we aren’t doing it. (let me know if you want to join us!)
4) Be more kind & gentle with ourselves.
Changing your mindset means changing the way we speak to ourselves. Let’s get rid of the negative self-talk once and for all, shall we?
- And as a side note to this, it is important to say NO when you need to. Do you say yes to everyone? I do. I tend to spread myself EVERYWHERE. I like to give, help, do and always feel bad if I’m not doing EVERYTHING that people ask of me. It’s not healthy. Saying no is a skill that takes practice for some. With the saying NO when needed, it means I’m putting myself and my needs first and taking care of me. That is the only way to be able to take care of the others in your life.
5) Becoming more conscious of the information you take in on a daily basis.
Are you addicted to the news? Your phone? Social media? All of the above? This is a struggle for me. If we are to change our mindset, then we need to be able to control the information that we take in. It is everywhere, and can be hard to control.
- For me, moderating the news while staying informed and being active (on my terms) is something that I know I can do to stay mentally healthy. Listening to more books and podcasts will be part of that mindset change – bringing in more positive information to balance out the daily negative info is a game changer.
Winter is a time to rest more, to check in with ourselves, find stillness and reflect. Let’s cultivate a new mindset and invite warmth into our mind, body and soul, slow down, take a more relaxed pace and retreat into ourselves. If we just focus on the intentions we create, this will lead to the changes we want to see.
Please share with us your own ways to bring more ease and change to your mindset this year. We LOVE to learn from you.
This post was written in collaboration with Jen Byer of Yoplay Yoga 4 Kids and my partner in Mindful Yoga Breaks.
Leave a Reply