New Year resolutions?

January 22, 2020
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By Daryl Satcher

“This year I’m gonna finally get back in shape.”

“On New Year’s Eve, I will eat my last pizza for three months.”

“In 2020, I will shut the haters out of my life, starting on Facebook.”

What if you are your biggest hater?

New year, new you; that is what you tell yourself, right? The second one is mine, but I don’t do New Year’s resolutions. I do all year-long resolutions, or I make lifestyle changes. But so I won’t hate myself later, I already ate some pizza after New Year’s Eve. But I haven’t eaten it since Jan. 3rd. What are you gonna do, right?

My reason for fasting from pizza for three months was to chop off my love handles. They hate on a playa’s progress in this game of life, and they’re sloppy. “Gotta go, gotta go” (in my Robin Harris voice). You get big bonus points if you can name the movie.

What are you doing to ensure that you will keep your New Year’s resolution promise to yourself and make it part of your permanent lifestyle? Let’s talk about it. Eighty percent of New Year’s resolutions get ghosted by Feb. 1.

Why can’t you keep a promise to yourself? If you can’t keep a promise to yourself, can you keep a promise to anyone else? What did you say about you, to you, after you dumped last year’s resolution?

We gotta dive deep to find the breakthrough. I add slang and jokes to lighten it up along the way. We are trained to think we have a clean slate every Jan. 1st.

What if you gave yourself a clean slate daily? What if you gave yourself a clean slate every time you took a deep love breath? Wouldn’t that be something?

We make commitments for self improvement. We love to focus on our faults in this society. But there is a voice inside that loves you dearly. That voice made the commitment. So, what if you got to know that voice a little bit better?

Sometimes we break up with our self-love commitments because the energy we created around it was all wrong. For example, you should be excited to work out, even when you are tired. If you hate the treadmill, don’t do the treadmill. You are setting yourself up for failure.

I am a yogi. I was in in the men’s locker room after class the other day. A guy who was taking the next class said he envied me for being done. I don’t get it. I love yoga.

The challenging poses remind me of my strength, the sweat is a hard-work receipt, and the deep love breaths relax me. I set intentions to improve myself. I breathe and move through these intentions as I become one with my higher self. I pop mental champagne bottles when I find mental, physical and spiritual breakthroughs in class.

Why would I not enjoy all of that?

Dance classes are a great and fun work out. My first summer in Chicago I worked day and night teaching on Mondays and Thursdays. I was exhausted after my day job.  I took an African dance class on Mondays and a salsa class on Thursdays. I was dragging coming in but leapt out, ready to teach my class.

Racquetball is so much fun that you don’t realize how hard you are working. Pumping iron with the homies is a work out and fellowship. (FYI: Work out or resolution partners keep you on point.) Your work out should make you smile to yourself when thinking about it.

Shoot, we live in Chicago, it’s artic cold out there in January! I would guess that more work outs get dumped in the Midwest than warm places. It’s like clockwork. Suddenly you can find plenty of parking at the yoga studio on Feb. 1.

Consider the following benefits to working out:

  • less stress
  • more energy
  • a more peaceful rest
  • better eating habits to stay in the gym
  • greater sense of self worth
  • catching your significant other staring at you

So, what are you doing to ensure that you will keep your New Year’s resolution promise to yourself and make it part of your permanent lifestyle?

Here is a recap of my suggestions:

1) Cut New Year’s resolutions out of your diet and replace them with lifestyle changes.

2) Get in tune with the part of you that sets the resolution.

3) Change the energy around the resolution so that you have a positive perception.

4) If your resolution is to get in shape, choose a workout that you will get excited about.

5) Focus on the benefits from your lifestyle change.

Daryl Satcher has taught at Columbia College Chicago since 2003 and been a professional actor since 2002. He is a theatre artist/restorative storyteller, having produced, written, directed and acted in three plays. This past year, he became a yoga instructor and got certified in mental health first aid training. He teaches rhythmic meditation on Wednesday nights at the Pineapple Studio in Forest Park.

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