Another New Year. Another list of resolutions? I think not. Not even a short list. Not even the old stand-by: go on a diet. I resolve to never diet again. I will eat exactly what my body wants, in exactly the amount it needs. And I will not feel bad about it. I will never criticize myself. I will notice how I feel and make a rational decision about what I will do next time. But I will never indulge in any form of self-hate.
I won’t be a Controller with myself. I will never replace “wants” with “shoulds.” I will listen respectfully to the part of me that is dissatisfied. I will practice patience and presence and look for what is deeper than the apparent frustration. I will notice when my reactions seem out of proportion to the current adult situation and I will explore the buried pain from years past. Always I will look deeper.
I commit to stay on my own side. I cannot afford to betray myself in any way at all. I practice awareness of my inner world. I pay attention to the tugs and struggles and joy. I will never diminish my feelings. I also will not act out. I will take time every day to listen to myself and I will pay attention. I will treat myself the way I treat others — with respect, tolerance and forgiveness. I never forget that I am my responsibility this lifetime. My standards for my behavior and my thoughts are the highest but I also know that, every minute, I have another chance. As long as I live, I can choose again. I pay attention and choose consciously.
I cannot and will not allow my Inner Critic to abuse me. It is never acceptable to call myself names, to denigrate myself, or to compare myself to another. I will not indulge depression or guilt. I won’t accept unacceptable behavior from another or from inside my own head. I remember that I am a decent human being, no matter what my choices have been in the past. I will not lose today by thinking about yesterday or tomorrow. Always I forgive myself and move forward with my head up.
In other words, I am kind to myself. I practice self-acceptance in the most radical form. The peace that lives at my center reminds me that I exist in the heart of God. I celebrate the truth daily. And that’s my final New Year’s Resolution.