Why You Should Ditch Your Resolutions and Adopt a “Becoming” Mindset

Uncategorized Dec 27, 2020

This time of year can put a lot of pressure on people.

We make lists of grandiose resolutions and promises and expectations for ourselves. And more often than not, it all becomes so overwhelming that we just give up all together.

Now, to be clear, there’s nothing wrong with wanting to better yourself. In fact, I think goal setting is a very healthy habit and something everyone should do.

But the pressure of a “new year, new you” can do exactly the opposite of what you may have intended. Having to “be better right now” is not helpful… nor is it practical.

So this year, I invite you to put all of those resolutions to the side, and instead, adopt a mentality of “becoming.”


A “becoming” mindset vs. resolution-making

I like the mindset of “becoming” because it meets you exactly where you are. It’s realistic.

It acknowledges your imperfections, your challenges, and your hang-ups… but at the same time, honors your potential and desire to lead a richer, more fulfilling life.

But a “becoming” mindset also usually involves something most of us are averse to…

Real change.

Looking back at my own life, I can safely say that the most significant periods of growth have ALL been preempted by change.

Some of them I initiated like…

  • Leaving college and joining Rusted Root
  • Deciding to have children
  • Leaving Rusted Root to be with my children
  • Saying yes to a university job I wasn’t sure I could do
  • Saying yes to starting my own newsletter

Others, like my multiple near-death moments in early 2019 were initiated for me.

Regardless of how the change came about, each one pushed me into growing into and becoming the a better version of myself.


Navigating your inner obstacles

So are you ready to start becoming someone you can be proud of?

Start by asking yourself, “What’s in my way?”

And for some of us, you may need to dig a little bit deeper than that, by asking yourself, “What within me is in the way?”

Perhaps it’s a thought, a worry, or an outdated belief about yourself….

Knowing what’s hindering your inner efforts can be the piece of the puzzle you need to start real, positive change for yourself.

Because once you identify it, you can take action to shift it. And that action will bring you closer to your goal.

Perhaps the greatest realization I’ve had from this “becoming mindset” is that I’m always looking forward to getting to know the person I’ll be next month, next year, or next decade. I’m constantly growing, changing, challenging, and learning.

And when you look at self-growth and betterment as a constant process and journey, rather than a “finish line,” life gets a whole lot sweeter.

So, with that in mind, here are a few tips to get you started on the road to becoming your best self:

  1. Go to a quiet place where you can relax without interruption. I also recommend bringing a journal to write in, or an audio device or phone to recording things on. This is helpful so you don’t forget your reasoning or train of thought.

  2. Then, let your mind run wild. Ask yourself, “If I had no fear or worry, what would make me the happiest?” Perhaps it relates to your health, work, passion, or the people in (or not in) your life.

  3. Focus on one at a time. For each, ask yourself: “What is getting in the way of this becoming real?” Is it fear, lack of knowledge, self-doubt, or embarrassment?

  4. Choose one action that could help you overcome one of your inner barriers. It doesn’t matter how small it is… just as long as it brings you closer to the goal.

    For instance, if you’re scared to do something because you don’t feel smart enough or know how to do it, choose to check out a book at the library or sign up at a class at your local community college.

Before you know it, you’ll be on your way to unlocking your potential and becoming the next best version of you!

Always remember, stay patient, be relentless, and keep going!

I believe in you.

Be Well,

Jim Donovan, M.Ed.


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