Life, yoga and other adventures

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Sunday, 3 January 2016

Why I haven't made any New Year resolutions

There is a school of thought that says you should start any challenge at the most difficult time - for example, go on a diet on a Friday so that you can get through the weekend when your resolve is strong. Wait until Monday, and by Saturday night you will be weak with desire for whatever your food fancy is. Other people say: no, do it when life is easy so you can get several successful days under your belt before you start to wobble.

I used to make resolutions when I was a child: be kinder to my little brother; do my homework on time; pick up my clothes off the floor before bedtime; then later it was the usual things like losing weight, getting fit, cutting down on the tea and biscuits. I never lasted much beyond February.

My yoga classes start again tomorrow after the Christmas break. I've already had quite a few enquiries from newbies wanting to join us, and I shall be glad to see them. However, I'm expecting that many of them will come for a few weeks and then something will stop them: they are too tired after work, the children need help with schoolwork, they forgot to eat at lunchtime and can't wait until after the class for their supper, or it's too cold to venture out. These are all valid excuses.

What works for me is to set weekly or sometimes even daily targets. It's easy to begin each morning by saying 'I shall go for a walk today' than to resolve to take a daily walk for a year. It's too much to ask, too big a target.

This week I shall be asking my students to consider a sankalpa, an intention just for that one class. This might be as simple as 'I shall open my heart and mind to what this session has to offer.' I shall be doing the same myself.


  1. That's good advice! I always start my diets on a Monday...and this time I waited until after New Years weekend to do it. I should have started on Friday.

    1. It's just my theory, Stephanie. Either way it all comes down to willpower!