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The Ultimate New Year’s Resolution

The Ultimate New Year’s Resolution
Jennifer Harbaugh

Every year we set up ourselves to fail at one of our New Year’s Resolutions. Want to change the outcome? Join author Jennifer Harbaugh as she shares “The Ultimate New Year’s Resolution.”

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Every year we set up ourselves to fail at one of our New Year’s Resolutions. Want to change the outcome? Join author Jennifer Harbaugh as she shares “The Ultimate New Year’s Resolution.”

Written by Jennifer Harbaugh

The Ultimate New Year’s ResolutionEvery year, I made a list of resolutions that I never was able to keep. Sometimes, I only met one or two out of 10 or 15 resolutions. Sad, isn’t it? It always made me feel depressed at the end of the year that I did not accomplish much.

Now I see that I cannot keep doing this every year. I cannot begin the year setting myself up to fail. You may have the same problem. So what are we to do?

Don’t make a list of resolutions you want to do but that may not be realistic.

For example: “I want to lose a particular number or amount of weight.” This is a disaster from the start. Life is unpredictable, so I have no idea if I will be able to lose that amount of weight. So delete any number you have in your list of resolutions (i.e., I will get a house in three months.)

Also, every time you say, “want,” that means you don’t need to do it. You have to be able to justify the resolution you are making. If you really need to lose weight, say “I need to lose weight because of health reasons” or “I need to lose weight because I need to get back in shape in order to do my favorite outdoor activities to connect with myself.”

Think of resolutions that you absolutely need to do in order to help yourself (health or self-love needs). How can you enjoy your life if you don’t set some priorities aside for yourself that need your attention? Sometimes, needs must be met in order to move forward with life. Pleasure will come in time.

Come up with five resolutions, nothing more. Just list five resolutions you can meet and maintain throughout the year and the following years to come.

There’s a new tradition I started a year ago that I will share with you, all thanks to my favorite artist, Kelly Rae Roberts.

I had been reading Kelly Rae’s blog for a while and one post hit me hard. It was, I think, January 2013. It’s called “The word of the year.” We pick a word that speaks to us of what we need to do during the year. The word she picked for this year was “Unleash.” The word I chose was “Create.”

There are so many words you can choose from. Pick the word that speaks to you and use it as the word of the year. Remind yourself how to maintain doing what you need to do to meet the “word” you choose.

I haven’t decided on mine yet for 2014, but when the time is right, I’ll know.

Nurture? Happiness? Peace?

You pick your word, and share it with me over here!

Identity Magazine is all about empowering women to get all A’s in the game of life – Accept. Appreciate. Achieve.™ Every contributor and expert answer the Identity 5 questions in keeping with our theme. As a team, we hope to inspire and motivate ourselves and inspire you to get all A’s.

What have you accepted in your life that took time, physically or mentally?
It took me a while to finally accept that I’m different from everyone else and I should not adapt myself to the society norms. So what if I am not thin? As long I am living a healthy lifestyle. So what if I don’t want to wear a dress and heels? As long I have clothes to wear everyday. I should be living the life I want, not the life the people want me to live.

What do you appreciate about yourself and within your life?
I appreciate the fact I am still alive and being given a second chance to reclaim myself. Not many people are lucky like me and I am grateful for that.

What is one of your most rewarding achievements in life? What goals do you still have?
My most rewarding achievement is that I exceeded everyone’s expectations of what a Deaf person can do. I have many goals, still…but, if I have to pick one goal and that is educating the world about the most important things in life.

What is your not-so-perfect way? What imperfections and quirks create your Identity?
Do I really have to tell? Okay, procrastination is my “not-so-perfect” way, probably the reason why it took me long enough to finally realize I need to start reclaiming myself at age 26. My imperfections are: biting my nails and being a worry wart.

How would you complete the phrase “I Love My…?”
I love my mind, I cannot believe that I came up with this article. So eternally grateful for that creativity part of my brain doing the hard work for me.

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About the author

Jennifer Harbaugh

Jennifer Harbaugh

Jennifer Harbaugh's passion of reading and writing started when she was a junior at Maryland School for the Deaf. She got her BA in English from Pennsylvania State University in 2008, and a MFA in Dramatic Writing from Goddard College in 2014. She just returned to graduate school, McDaniel College, for the second time to get a MS in Deaf Education after falling in love with teaching.

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