Honoring greatness with the Nurtured Heart Approach
Tammy Small, M.Ed. and certified Nurtured Heart Trainer
Today’s a New Day.  So what are your New Year’s Resolutions? Each year as we struggle to remember to write the correct year on our documents,  to start to think about organizing our papers for taxes, to try NOT to think about the next long vacation, and recover from the long holiday, we are prompted to ‘begin fresh’ with resolve to change something in a positive way.  ) Ironically, this comes from an assumption that we are messing up, which in itself doesn’t seem like a strong start for anything! ) But that aside, many of us are aware that most resolutions falter after the first quarter.  The formation of a new habit takes 18-19 times of repetition to be fully formed (Perhaps this explains why we still have to prompt our kids to say, “please” endlessly!) But I would offer a couple other challenges to the lack of staying power of our resolutions.  
We are well-intentioned to go to the gym, cut back on unhealthy eating, spend more time away from electronics and connecting with people, sign up to volunteer OUTSIDE the school, snap less at those we love, etc. Great goals. When I frame this in terms of the work we do as Nurtured Heart practitioners, it seems the best beginning to our new year is to actually name what we are doing right already; and then do more of that.  Keep it narrow and specific. One day at a time. And if we slip off the greatness pedestal, then reset yourself back right away.  Not even tomorrow. But the next minute!!
In the same vein as my belief that complaining doesn’t serve us or make us greater, I  see a parallel in ‘New Year’s Resolutions which are about where we have failed Like the diet you are going to start next month, we should simply resolve each day/each moment to be new. We should simply have a New Day Resolution.  Every day.  Today I will not grumble when the alarm goes off. Success!  Today I will let any person who signals, pull their car in front of mine.  Today, when I forget my resolve, I will reset and apologize to my child for snapping at them for dawdling (they weren’t doing it to make me mad… oh, right… sorry, sweetie).
A friend of mine, counts the days of her successful marriage. They are up to about 8,000 so far. It’s a new way to think of renewal.  Each day – rather than each year.  For those of us who experienced loss or serious health changes last year, this concept is easier to get.  And the funny thing about this New Day Resolution, is that is really IS about SWEATING THE SMALL STUFF. The small stuff is packing your bag the night before so that going to the gym after work is easier. The small stuff is texting your child (after school! ) to tell her you appreciated how quickly she was ready to go today – and making everyone’s morning less stressful. The small stuff is ignoring the emails and picking up the phone to call an out-of-state friend.  The small stuff is remembering to bring canned food to church for the food bank, The small stuff is walking by the staff room and passing on the tray of cookies someone brought in to be ‘kind’.  Because if you can do the small stuff once, you can do it again. And then it adds up to the big stuff – like habits of greatness.   That’s when New Day Resolutions become New Year Actions.  And resolve is a minute by minute success plan.
Happy New Day!
Forget the Guilt of Failed New Year’s Resolutions: Focus on the NEW DAY!
Tuesday, January 3, 2012