By R. Dafina Kuficha, L.Ac.
At the beginning of each new year, many people are expected to make resolutions. Too often, the resolutions are broken before they can set root. Long ago it became clear to me change can occur during any time of the year we make the decision to change. Why wait until the new year? Instead, review the following list of “Twelve steps to enriching your life,” and see which suggestions fit your needs. Focus on one of them for one full week. Remember to modify the suggestions in the ways that fit YOU! Be kind to your process and make it enjoyable.
1) Keep your promises, especially to yourself, including timelines. Make procrastination a thing of the past. Do it NOW! Don’t wait until tomorrow. Take a moment before saying “yes” to something. Are you saying “yes” from your heart or your mind? Make a commitment to only say “yes” when it really works for you to keep your word. It’s okay to say, “I really don’t have room in my schedule for that right now. Let’s choose another time instead.” Do you first!
2) Be flexible. Sometimes a life test is just that, a test. If you become rigid after challenging times, they remain challenging. The Tao Te Ching says, “Bend but don’t break.” Everyone needs change. Don’t fear change, embrace it.
3) Cultivate a positive outlook. Life has challenges. A negative situation can teach you strength, compassion, kindness, gratitude and patience.
4) Choose to make healthy food choices. Eating well means eating fresh, vital foods. Listen to your body. Do you really need to eat that piece of cake? Don’t eat until you’re full. Chew your food slowly and control your portions.
5) Develop the courage to be your authentic self. Often people don’t realize they are compromising themselves to be what will fill someone else’s expectations of them. Take time to know yourself. Our cares change with assessment and age. Things aren’t always as serious as we make them. What’s behind the anger? Find out and you can cure it. “Know thy self and to thy own self be true.”
6) Develop stress management techniques and use them regularly. Get sufficient rest and sleep. Learn to meditate. Take a yoga, tai chi, dance, or swimming class. Listen to relaxing music in a quiet place. Take a walk in nature and bring a snack. Read a funny book, like “Calvin & Hobbes” or watch a funny movie. Quiet your mind.
7) Use positive affirmations. “I love myself and won’t let anyone bring my spirit down.” “I am a money magnet.” “I use my time wisely.” “I take good care of my body, spirit, soul and mind.”
8) Make wise financial choices. If you don’t have the money to buy a new dress, get your hair done, or go on that trip, put it off for a bit. Be creative, find free activities to enjoy.
9) Be generous! Many people wish they had your fortune. Share. Adopt a homeless person and give them a gift certificate for food, clothes, movies, etc. Give generously and receive generously. Keep it balanced.
10) Declutter. If you don’t read it, wear it or share it, you don’t need it. Let it go! That goes for people, too. Keep your life simple and you’ll enjoy it more.
11) Have FUN! Take a scuba diving class; take singing classes; make healthy gourmet meals; travel abroad; visit museums; go dancing, and make new friends. Do things without the expectation of anything but a good time.
12) Keep your body, mind and spirit healthy with a great acupuncture treatment. Call my office to make your appointment today! And remember to take time to smell the roses, rosemary, lavender, jasmine, or whatever fragrance reminds you to value your joy.