New Year’s MANTRA vs Resolution

Drop the Resolution & Create a Mantra

It’s that time of year again! According to Merriam-Webster, Resolution is defined as “A formed decision to do or not do something. Intention, resolve, decision, aim, or aspiration.”

Top resolutions include: 

  • Weight loss
  • Quit Smoking
  • Learn something New
  • Eat healthier – more exercise
  • Get out of debt & save money
  • Spend more time with family 
  • Travel more
  • Be less stressed
  • Volunteer
  • Drink Less

Did you know that over 80% of New Year’s Resolutions are not achieved? According to a recent study only 64 percent last longer than the first month, and only 46 percent last longer than six months. Even more discouraging is that only 14 percent of people over 50 actually achieve their resolution compared to 39 percent of people in their 20’s. So why do we put ourselves through a well intended resolution each year when most of us fail? I’m proposing in 2020 you don’t make a resolution but create/live a mantra.

I think most resolutions fail because they tend to be symptoms of lifestyle choices and habits vs the root cause. A Mantra is (originally in Hinduism and Buddhism) a word or sound repeated to add in concentration when meditating. It is also a statement, phrase or slogan that defines oneself and is intended to be repeated. Many businesses use mantra’s to help solidify the company culture or brand. After all, you are a brand! Take the time to sit down and consider what is at your core or better yet what you want to be at your core. Once you have defined this you should create a simple statement your prepared to live with and repeat for the next year. I’d also propose a song and an image or symbol to remind you of your mission. The idea being that you play, say or view this regularly in your mind or out load to keep you on your chosen path. If you’re struggling for mantra inspiration, here are some ideas to consider.

Possible Mantra’s for 2020

  • Stop Wasting Time

We have all heard the expression “Life is short and then you die.” – sadly it’s true. I propose you live 2020 like it is your last year on earth. No more excuses. Bring on the unadulterated action! This way of thinking should enable you to be bold and to consider what is most important to you. I love this one because if forces you to get to the really big stuff and it enables you to achieve multiple objectives you’ve defined for yourself. Possible Anthems: “I Lived” by One Republic & “Unwritten” by Natasha Bedingfield

  • Minimize Consumption

Do your really need that new dress? How often do you have to throw out food you bought that you didn’t use? Are you still buying bottled water? Can you walk to work instead of drive? Everything around us is encouraging us to consume more, get something new, have the latest “whatever” that some celebrity or u-tuber tells us we should have so cutting way back on purchases can be rough but also very rewarding.  Possible Anthems: “Mercy, Mercy, Me” by Marvin Gaye, “Lost in the Supermarket” by The Clash

  • Give More than you Get

Give more of your time, energy, passion, commitment, money, love, support … you get the idea. Giving more without thinking about what’s fair or owing someone or them owing you is freeing. Paying it forward can change your life and the lives of those you interact with. Possible Anthems: “Count on Me” by Bruno Mars or “All You Need is Love” by The Beatles

  • Practice Kindness

The USA is more divisive than ever before.  What can you to change it?  Change what you do. Be the bigger and better person. Make random acts of kindness a part of your everyday life. Be more empathetic and help those in need regularly.  Possible Anthems: “Imagine” by John Lennon or “I Won’t Let Go” by Rascal Flats.

Share your Mantra

Once you’ve created your mantra tell friends and family about it so they can help support your efforts. More than likely the change you’ve chosen for your everyday life will have secondary benefits that enable improvement in some of the top 10 resolutions and more. By addressing the root cause vs the symptoms the impact on your life and those around you will be greater and longer lasting.

I have chosen to live the next year as if it’s my last. And I have chosen “Fight Song” by Rachel Platten. So bring on 2020! 

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Dr. Vanessa Rodriguez is a board-certified general practitioner with more than 15 years of patient care experience. She takes an integrative approach to patient care that considers the whole person – mind, body, and spirit – and is deeply committed to assisting her patients in achieving and sustaining optimal health. Dr. Vanessa is also a skilled writer and medical reviewer, specializing in preventive care and health promotion. Her articles are written in an approachable manner that is simple to comprehend and implement in one’s own life. Dr. Vanessa’s mission is to equip her patients and readers with the knowledge and resources necessary to live their greatest lives.

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