Jon Gibbs (jongibbs) wrote,
Jon Gibbs

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Leave your baggage behind

At the end of December, a lot of folks thought about what they wanted to do in the coming year. They resolved to give up smoking; eat less; exercise more etc.

It’s good to make that sort of commitment to ourselves. Aside from my ‘Write at least 50 words on Dead Doris every day come rain or shine (or snow)’ goal (so far, so good), I plan to lose a few pounds over the coming months (so far, not so good - curse you, Dunkin' Donuts!). There’s no doubting the benefit of setting realistic goals, sincerely made and steadfastly worked at, but there’s something else we can do. Something so simple it's often overlooked, yet I think it can have more of a positive impact on our year than any resolution.

I’m talking about letting go of all the negative baggage we carry around with us.

I don’t know about you, but during the course of any given year, I pick up a lot of garbage. Even though I achieved a lot in 2010, I still failed to complete much of what I had planned. There were things I should have arranged or done, but never quite got around to (like buffing up Waking up Jack Thunder so I could send it out to agents), things I did or said that I wish I hadn’t (and vice versa), things other people did or said, stuff outside of my control that happened etc.

Most of the time, we don’t give these failures and irritations much thought, but I believe their negative impact stays with us nonetheless, lurking in the dark recesses of our sub-conscious mind. We carry it around like excess baggage, letting it weigh us down without even knowing it. Because of that, I think it’s important to first acknowledge that baggage and then give ourselves permission to leave it behind.

That’s why this year, before I set my goals for 2011, I forgave myself for all the things I didn’t do, or shouldn’t have done, in 2010. Sure I didn’t complete the first draft of a new novel, and I still haven’t polished Waking up Jack Thunder to the point where I can send it out into the world, but I made a conscious decision to leave all that baggage behind. I gave myself permission to step into the New Year with a clean slate and a clear conscience – which leaves plenty of room for all the new baggage I’ll be collecting during the course of next twelve months .

How about you?

If you allowed yourself a fresh start today, what baggage would you decide to leave behind?

Tags: goals

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