Of all the metrics that we use to measure how the past year worked for us, the one that I tend to focus most on is, how much understanding I have gained about my own self in this year, and how close I have come to living with full consciousness.
I know there are other things to worry about too, but are they directly related with how much peace and happiness I have in life? Probably not.
I ask myself what things I did in the previous year that took me away from living with mindfulness, and what things I did that brought me closer to it.
To be honest, this isn’t necessarily a yearly debate for me. I tend to do it more on a daily basis.
Still, I think all this is worth sharing with you as you may prefer this approach, it being the start of a new year, to reflect upon the events of the whole year rather than on a day-to-day basis.
By asking myself how far I have come with my own practice of mindfulness and meditation, and where I ultimately want to be, I can see what changes I have to make in my daily life to reach my ultimate goals.
Whenever I find that my growth hasn’t been as per my expectations, it’s a clear indicator to me to increase my practice of mindfulness and meditation.
Even on a daily basis, I check whether my mind dictates my every thought and action for the day or, whether I have full-control over my mind and can make it do what I want it to do rather than the other way around.
Try this for yourself. Take a few minutes off from reading this and reflect upon how you spent your last year; how often you practiced living with mindfulness? how many times you meditated on any given day? how close you feel towards understanding your consciousness?
Reflecting thus on how mindful you were in the past year will help you to take steps to be more mindful in this year.
Now, moving on to how to make resolutions for the year ahead, let’s see how we can approach this thing the mindful way.
As you start to make, and work on, new resolutions for this year, instead of asking yourself what you want to have in this year why not ask yourself what you ultimately want to have in life?
Is it money? good health? recognition? good looks?
The reason you rush after money or health or beauty is because you think it will make you happy and bring peace to your life. But if you rely on anything that’s not under your full-control you can never be happy.
And even if you do meet all your goals, but miss even a single tiny one, will you still be happy? No.
What’s the use of having money if you lose your health and peace of mind in gaining it. You can replace money with any other resolution you have, but if you can’t find full and final peace of mind by working on your resolution then what’s the use of having it at all.
And even if you do meet all your goals, what’s the use of achieving them if you still keep wishing for more and more of them and continue to seek happiness and peace in the outside world.
Isn’t the happiness you gain once you reach your goals enough for you?
If reaching your goals can’t bring you ultimate happiness and peace of mind, then are they really worth pursuing at all?
Chasing anything that lies outside your control doesn’t bring you happiness and peace because, it always makes you think that you can be more happy and peaceful than you are right now. And this way of thinking never ends.
Look, I am not trying to say that having these other goals is totally worthless. They do have a place in your life. All I am saying is that, are they really as important as you think they are?
Another problem with these resolutions is that at some point in your life the results you expect from working upon them will start to decline.
What if you are not able to make as much money as you want in this year, what if your looks start to fade away with age, what if you can no longer walk or exercise as you can do today, what if no one cares for your work as you get old and become redundant.
See, the things you often chase might, because of their very nature, decline in being as effective as time moves on.
Knowing this, doesn’t it make more sense to pursue some other path which will only increase in effect with each day.
This path is nothing but the path of self-discovery, the path of mindfulness and meditation, the path of understanding your own consciousness.
Call it whatever you want, the key thing is to keep trying to understand yourself more and more with each day.
The truth is, having this simple resolution to work on your own inner self for this year can actually help you fully understand all your other resolutions in more depth.
And by trying to understand yourself more and more you will also see what goals are actually worth chasing in the long run, and what goals need to be abandoned for good.
If all you want to be is happy in this year, and every year after that, then know this simple truth : Anything that takes you away from your consciousness is bound to eventually make you unhappy, and anything that takes you closer towards your consciousness is bound to eventually make you happy.
Let this year be the year in which you gain more understanding about your self than you ever have; let this be the year when you actually gain lasting peace and happiness; let this be the year when you finally start to live a life full of meaning and purpose.
Let us walk together in this year and help each other live with more mindfulness and meditation.
Thank you for reading this. If you found this useful then please share it with others, as you may end up helping them form the right resolutions for themself.