For as long as I’ve known what New Year’s Resolutions are, I’ve made them. And it’s been pretty much the same resolutions every.single.time. It didn’t matter if I was 12, 22, or 30, the usual culprits included losing weight, working out 6 days a week, learning a new skill, blah blah blah. And every year, I’ve failed. Wow. Let that sink in. I’ve been disappointing myself for 20 years.

This year, I’ve decided to make a change.

This year, I’m not going to fail.

Want to know how I can guarantee it? It’s simple. I am NOT making resolutions this year. I’m tired of treating January 1 like the grim reaper: the cyclical reminder that each year I try to “lose weight,” yet ultimately fail.

This year, it’s time to change my outlook. No need to resolve anything, just be happy with myself.

After years of living far from family, we finally live in the same state. After years of a failing relationship and ultimately divorce, I’m now happily married to the love of my life. After wondering if I’d ever be lucky enough to start a family, I have a son. After being disappointed by friendships, I recognize the value in the quality of friends over the quantity.

This year, it occurred to me: Why in the world would I spoil all that goodness with the disappointment over not keeping my overused, uninspiring resolutions? How my body looks or if I know how to sew or not does not define me… my family, friendships and passions do.

Clearly, I had been entering each New Year all wrong. For some reason, I attributed meeting my resolutions with happiness. I thought happiness meant perfection. Holy cow, what intense pressure I was putting on myself! YOU MUST ‘BETTER’ YOURSELF TO BE HAPPY, KATIE. YOU MUST BE PERFECT TO BE HAPPY. Ew.

Even after having my son, I was terrified of the pressure I would put on myself to lose the baby weight. Can you believe it? I was afraid of myself. Getting back to pre-baby-body is the mother of all resolutions that society puts on us no matter what time of year it is.

I have finally discovered that the truest transformations for me, will not come from the number of pounds on a scale or picking up a new hobby. I don’t transform simply by meeting mundane goals I set every year, I transform by basking in my happiness with life and all it has to offer. With this constant awareness of happiness, making better choices to enrich my life has come second nature – not because I set a resolution.

This year, I’ve realized that happiness does NOT mean perfection. Happiness, to me, is being aware and thankful for of all the goodness I have around me each and every day.
This year, I’m happy.


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