I PLEDGE to change my life, by focusing on the following TEN goals:
So as I review my pledge list from last year, I feel rather good. I haven’t mastered my list, by any means, but by utilizing my coaching training, I’m actually hitting 7 out of 10.
I Pledge To:
1) Pray often/encourage kids to pray. So I don’t pray as often as I used to, but I do pray. And most of the time, it’s with the kids or for them. (I pray for their protection and their safety.)
2) Think positively about life. This is a big one. I come from an anxious family and saw the world through a lens of fear. Anxiety runs on both sides of my family. Anxiety relies on negativity and pessimism. One of the biggest changes I’ve made in my life has been to dismiss negative thoughts. Rather than ruminate on fears and what ifs, I put my energy to better use. Amazingly seeing the world (and setbacks) in a more positive light is turning habitual.
3) Promoting positivity and encouraging others. I tend to be rather empathetic, overly concerned about how my actions impact others. How exciting, it’s now a key component of my business. When I work with disadvantaged students through the school, I make it a personal goal to engage each child in a positive manner. And I enjoy every moment a client hits a pivotal moment. Still, like everyone else, I have less than stellar interactions from time to time.
4) Eat healthy It’s all about balance, right? I definitely balance between healthy and unhealthy meals, especially around the holidays. I’m plighted with high cholesterol, likely a family trait since my numbers don’t appear to improve with diet or exercise. Regardless, my personal goal is to eat more fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Luckily, too much sugar and grease makes me sick, so indulging is not as enjoyable as it could be. Unfortunately, it doesn’t exactly stop me. I’m half and half on the success of this one.
5) Exercising regularly 4 to 5-stars here. Nothing helps improve my insomnia—and my mood—better than exercising. I can’t recommend it enough. And though it takes A LOT of effort, there’s often a point many reach when they actually start looking forward to the gym. Even better, exercise isn’t a one-size fits all. From walking to rock climbing, options abound.
6) Practice relaxation methods Now that I teach stress management and relaxation techniques—and write extensively about them—I practice what I preach (most of the time)!
7) Rely on proper communication BUSTED… Proper communication means thoughtful communication. Clear, honest, polite. I’m a windbag–my biggest downfall. While, proper communication is another key to my workshops—especially parenting, I still find myself talking more than listening. And I love to lecture…sigh.
8) Be present. Another pledge I’m not so great at. Last year, school employees were asked to post one word that represented how they wanted to interact with children and coworkers. I chose to Be Present (I know, it’s two words, not one.) The concept of being present, of consciously paying attention to the person in front of me, seems incredibly significant in a world where phones and gadgets take precedence. I really, really need to work on this pledge.
9) Being responsible, taking charge of my life. Okay, I’ve always been a responsible sort of person. I’m also the baby of five (all sisters), meaning I had a lot of people looking out for me my entire life. Now I’m an orphan of sorts. Both of my parents are gone, and despite my age, it’s surprisingly unsettling. Life is constantly changing. People come and go. I’ve watched close-knit families disintegrate, for a variety of reasons—the greatest reminder –that nothing in life should be taken for granted. So for me, taking responsibility means fully recognizing that I, ME, am 100 percent responsible for everything in my life. If I am unhappy, it is up to me to adjust my attitude. If I want my life to look different, I must be the catalyst. To me, this is the most valuable pledge of all. If you want to transform your life, start here.
10) Be more fun, goofy, full of laughter Hmmm. I’m a serious kind of person that lacks a funny bone. Science touts the value of humor as a key to longevity, so I’d really like to blossom in this arena. I don’t even know where to start. Maybe it’s time for me to research how to be more fun! Small steps…