Ask Golden Willow

Gentle and kind: A good New Year's resolution

By Ted Wiard
For the Taos News
Posted 12/26/18

Dear Readers: As the holidays are winding down and we start to look toward a new year, a time of reflection sets in and allows you to review the year, as well as your entire life and see how you would like to step into 2019.

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Ask Golden Willow

Gentle and kind: A good New Year's resolution

Posted

Dear Readers: As the holidays are winding down and we start to look toward a new year, a time of reflection sets in and allows you to review the year, as well as your entire life and see how you would like to step into 2019.

Often you will find yourself reviewing the negative events and behaviors that did not serve you. This is common, and it is good to review the thoughts and behaviors that did not bring you happiness or help improve your quality of life.

If you are truly looking at your inventory, you will also look at how your actions may have hurt or caused problems for others. Looking at how some actions have impacted you as well as others can lead to the opportunity of making amends.

New actions can come from a place of mindfulness for yourself as well others. One of the best things you can do before taking an action is to pause; think about the intent behind your next action. Is it to be gentle and kind to yourself and others? Remember that your action will have a ripple effect. Will it serve the bigger picture or have a negative impact?

Remember to take time to look at the positives that helped you make it another year. Many people forget to look at the positives and only look at the negatives.

Acknowledging your positive actions and positive events can help give you the momentum and tools to help in the coming year. Your healthy decisions can be the foundation to help navigate your actions and allow for more joy in your life.

Being gentle and kind to yourself as well as others is a great approach and allows forgiveness to be a major goal. This prevents resentments and regrets from being at the forefront of your decision process.

Setting reasonable goals rather than unreasonable resolutions for the upcoming year can lead to successful momentum rather than a feeling of futility. Think in terms of moderation in decisions and actions you take so that you haven't set yourself up for failure.

Unreasonable goals and failure makes it easy to completely discard a good intent and prove you "failed" once again. Make sure your resolutions are doable, allowing you to build step by step toward long-term goals and benchmarks, rather than seeking immediate gratification.

As this is a time of celebration, I encourage everyone to be mindful and responsible. Have a designated sober driver if you drink alcohol. Avoid pushing alcohol, food or other products on someone if that person has declined to partake.

I hope 2019 brings you new levels of enjoyment within your life, and thank you to all the readers for your questions, comments, and taking the time to read my articles. May you continue to strive for emotional healing and growth for yourself and then reach out to others. Happy New Year and thank you.

I wish you well. Until next year, take care.

Golden Willow Retreat is a nonprofit organization focused on emotional healing and recovery from any type of loss. Direct any questions to Dr. Ted Wiard, EdD, LPCC, CGC, Founder of Golden Willow Retreat at GWR@newmex.com.

The Taos News has committed to implement a weekly column to help educate our community about emotional healing through grief. People may write questions to Golden Willow Retreat and they will be answered privately to you and possibly as a future article for others. Please list a first name that grants permission for printing.

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