Many times, as the New Year approaches, we find ourselves setting resolutions for the coming year.  Or at least, I can say for sure that I compare my new year to my last year. Some years, I’ve found myself setting resolutions that are steeped in shame, disappointments, or other people’s values.

Last year, I tried something new and it was amazing. I invite you to try this for yourself this year. It was the simplest and most wonderful resolution ever. Ready?

Resolve to love more. 

First, Love yourself more.  Take time to do something you love every single day. Treat yourself with kindness and compassion. If you are tired, let yourself rest. Schedule time for exercise, and hold those appointments as sacred. If you are hungry, feed yourself. If you are lonely, call or message a friend – reach out and ask your friend to talk or meet, or invite them to something.

When you love yourself more, you will attract others into your life who will love you more, and treat you the way you want to be treated. They are following your example. When you treat yourself with love, you are also treating yourself with respect and kindness. By filling your own cup, you are ensuring that you have something to give to the people in your life who are counting on you. Buy yourself flowers if flowers make you happy. That’s one thing I do for myself every week and it brings me a lot of joy. The photo on this post is from the flowers I bought myself this week. Aren’t they beautiful?!?

As you begin to love yourself more and show yourself love in tangible ways like buying yourself flowers, making time to read something you are interested in, relaxing with friends, taking yourself for coffee or dinner, buying tickets to an event you love even if you aren’t sure who you’ll take with you (just getting ready to buy my second year of Season Tickets to the Idaho Shakespeare Festival!) , allowing yourself to rest when you are tired, etc… you begin to feel love.

Feeling love of yourself allows you to fill your own cup. By loving yourself, you are naturally motivated to make positive changes in your life whether they apply to your spirituality, your health, your love life, your friend circle, your family, your finances or any other area in your life. There will be no shame or self hate involved. If you make positive changes, it is to further support the love you have for yourself. Loving yourself means that you treat yourself with kindness and compassion.

That kindness and compassion you show yourself will begin to spill over into every relationship in your life. As you feel more kindness and compassion for yourself, you’ll begin to feel the same kindness and compassion for others. Kindness and compassion changes everything in every relationship. It doesn’t mean allowing people to do things you don’t want them to do, or you giving more than you have to give. It means that you view every interaction through a lens of love and offer love to everyone you meet. Even if you don’t agree with that person, you can offer a loving thought.

You can do this. All it takes is a decision that you are worth it. And you are!! If you need an excuse, make self care and self love a resolution. This is so important in my view that it is the second workshop in my “Empowered You” course. For more on that, you can click here.

As you love yourself more, you’ll begin to love others more. Listen to the people around you. Make an effort to connect with them, learn about them. Resolve to treat someone to an unexpected act of kindness each week. You’ll brighten that person’s week! And… you’ll also be brightening your own week. The feeling of being kind or generous is wonderful. Knowing that you caused someone to smile can truly change your outlook. By focusing on someone else, you can actually lower your stress levels and lighten your mood.

When you are packing your lunch, pack two and give one to a friend. My friend Cathy and I do this sometimes for each other, it changes your whole day!  Offer to walk a neighbor’s dog. Take leftovers to someone who could use a smile and you’d like to let know you are thinking of them. Make cookies for all your neighbors. Smile at people in the store. Send a loving thought to someone who looks sad. Speak to someone who’s eyes are down…. or better yet, say hello to someone who looks you in the eye.

Invite someone over for tea or coffee. Don’t worry about your house. As long as it’s basically clean and no one will need a shot after going  into your house, it’s fine! No one is going to your house to judge you, they just want to spend time with you. And if they DO judge you, they probably aren’t your friend anyway. I lightened up on this a few years ago and it’s really freeing. I like to stack things on my breakfast bar. There is always something there – and I wish it was tidy. But… if it wait for the breakfast bar to be cleaned off, I’ll never have friends over. I tell my friends, “so… there’s a bit of real life here today….”. Many of my friends thank me for being real and taking the pressure off of them.  My super organized and tidy friends just smile. But they still come back! The time spent connecting will feel great to both you and your friends.

Here is the only catch: Only do things you truly want to do. Only give what you can afford to give. Only share things you genuinely want to share. If you do things out of integrity with yourself, you’ll cause yourself more stress and probably say really mean things to yourself. Here is the dirty truth: people know it if you are doing something you don’t want to do. If you are tapped out with nothing to give, go back to loving yourself more and fill your own cup. THEN you can give.

Love your higher power more. Schedule time for prayer and meditation. If you don’t schedule it, it won’t happen. Once a week is better than nothing: but you  aren’t getting the benefits you could be receiving.

Make it easy. As you meditate or pray, set a gentle timer to make sure you don’t worry about being late or falling asleep. Any time you spend is better than no time. If it’s only 2 minutes one day, that’s ok. If you can spend 15 minutes every day, you’ll see major changes in every area of your life. If you can spend 15 minutes morning and night, even better! In my last blog post, I shared a meditation written with the intention of connecting you to your intuition and the Divine Wisdom. I invite you to check it out, I hope it can be helpful. Here is the link.

Find a spiritual teacher who really speaks to your heart and then follow them. Don’t be afraid to mix things up and follow a diverse group of spiritual leaders. Buy their books. Follow their blogs. Find them on Facebook or Twitter.

For other meditations that are fantastic by two of my spiritual teachers, check out Deepak Chopra here and Gabrielle Bernstein here. I encourage you to include journaling in our spiritualism. I’ll talk more about that in coming blogs.

Love more. And forgive yourself if that’s hard some days to love yourself or the people around you. Forgiveness is another *BIG* topic for another blog.

My intent is to spread love & light far and wide – and give people tools to live their highest purpose and with a greater connection to the angels and to Spirit (God, Source, Universe, Jesus, Mary, or whoever you resonate with). Please help me do that by “liking” and sharing a link to any blog post you love.

Blessings to you, my friend! Happy New Year!!

Love and light. ~Brenda

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