The word resolution has come to be thought of by many as a commitment which at which we are bound to fail. Selecting a nearly undoable habit to break or goal to reach creates our own Survivor like challenge even if for the briefest of moments.
Instead of resolving to do or not do something in 2017, what if you gifted yourself with an experience? In my life, there are a few times I gifted myself with something so transformative, that the gift just keeps on giving. The top three which immediately jump into my mind are:
Pottery/Ceramics – the day I started throwing clay was not an easy one. In those first few lessons, I thought of quitting it several times but then, I was hooked. And I stayed hooked until circumstances caused me to take a break. But there is no doubt I will return to it. The act of shaping the earth into a new form is thrilling. Playing with form, textures, colors and fire and then waiting for what will happen brought forward creative juices that demanded to be heard.
Feldenkrais – little did I know that the class Larry and I took would be the beginning of a life long journey, but it broke open my constrained and painful life in a way I could not have predicted. As some of you know, I didn’t enjoy those first Feldenkrais Awareness Through Movement classes. There was nothing easy about it for me. And still the healing dream I had the night of the first class probably sealed the deal (even though I didn’t know it at the time). Of course, this experience became not just a gift to me, but to thousands of people that I have and will work with.
Learning to swim – Almost two years ago, I decided enough was enough. I was going to learn to overcome my fear of water and swim. Since then I have been going to swim twice a week. It feels like this gift will keep on giving for years to come. I know my family history with water and my self-image is rewritten every time I show up to swim. Each time I meet another milestone or I feel my body/mind fluidly coordinate around something previously difficult feels like a miracle.
When I reflect on the above items as well as the myriad others I haven‘t shared, most have something key in common: I didn’t start out trying to do any of them by myself. And I think this is important. Connect with someone who has walked the path, knows the process of learning and make a commitment to the experience by making a commitment to the person. People rise to the challenge of Survivor because of the container they are given. So the first gift might be assembling your just right container.
Such gifts take time, at a minimum, and some take money. With my schedule or finances, I couldn’t possible gift myself with a new, transformative experience every year. I feel like swimming will take me another two or three years to fully integrate into my life. And I am happy to gift myself again in 2017 with my personal evolution of this experience.
But enough about my experiences, I would love to hear about yours? How have your gifted yourself in the past, in ways that keeps on giving? Or what are you longing to give yourself in 2017?