Resolutions and Rest: New Year's Thoughts | Indiana Boudoir Photography

Looking toward the new year, there is a lot of pressure to make a big change, to transform, to “better” yourself.

As soon as Christmas is over, all talk turns to New Year’s Resolutions. While having lofty goals is a wonderful thing, having the pressure of tying them to a date isn’t always what is best. Our bodies, our minds, don’t comply with any arbitrary timeline.

When we set these lofty goals looking toward the New Year, it is inevitable that we will fail. The media, marketing consultants, everything in our society is geared toward us setting our goals so high that we will fail. Why? Because then we’ll have to buy their products in desperation when we realize we can’t attain those goals. And once we fail, we spend the rest of the calendar year, so many long days, waiting for that magical date to start over anew.

We all have seasons of growth and seasons of rest and these periods don’t need to coincide with anyone’s timeline but our own. Transformation can certainly happen on New Year’s Day. Or it can happen on the first day of spring, or the day your baby is born, or on a random Tuesday in June.

Or, and this is so very important, change can not happen at all. If you are in mourning, if you have been through trauma, or you’re battling a serious illness, or one of any number of difficulties life brings us, you’re probably not excited about the next weight loss regime or self-help book. If it takes all your strength to open your eyes in the morning you do not need to feel guilty for not having big plans for change. What you are doing is enough.

Our society is so growth-driven we don’t give ourselves permission to rest.

Rest is not stagnation. Rest is where wounds are healed. Rest is where ideas are formed. And rest is where we prepare for growth. Sometimes we only need to rest for a day. But, sometimes, we need to give our soul and body the permission to rest, to coast, to not “better” anything about ourselves for weeks or months or years.

You are worthy. You are whole. There is nothing you need to change to be valued as a human being.

If you decide to use the New Year to set goals? I will be here cheering you on. If you decide not to? I’ll move over and share my fuzzy blanket on the couch with you and we can rest together.