Skip New Year’s resolutions and make a “thankful list” instead

Woman hands and a notepad
Photo credit: Yulia Lisitsa/Getty Images

by Lily Sanders

New Year resolutions always bothered me in the past, and now I know why: It seems that we set ourselves up for failure, or at the very least, for struggle and challenge.

Statistics show that only 8 percent of the population achieve their resolutions, according to a study at the University of Scranton. Why is this so?

When we make lists of things to change, release or accomplish for the New Year, we do it because we want to be better, happier and more successful.

The key ingredient in anyone’s recipe for all of this, however, is being thankful. Being thankful for who you are, and where you are in this present moment, is more dynamic than any resolutions. It’s freedom.

Want more? See other features on gratitude and thankfulness here!

Freedom is one of the gateways to triumph

Release is freedom. When you can let go of the conditioned mind patterns that have been running your life, you can begin to release all hindrance and restraints that have been stopping you from embracing the true reflection of life itself.

Free your mind and invite your heart into the mix. Reframe the thinking mind that is saying you are not good enough, strong enough or successful enough. Instead, love whatever is going on in your current life situation, and above all … love yourself. Be thankful for you and your place on this earth.

We all experience change, and it is necessary if we want to evolve in life. However, we need to start with gratitude and acceptance of who we are now. Stop living with guilt, regret and fear. Know that you are a being of love, and everything is OK in this moment. Toss the resolution list and write a “Thankful” list instead.

When we have gratitude, we have inner peace

No matter where you are at this moment, be thankful. Any life situations that you may be experiencing are transient. Know that they’re here for a while and won’t be forever.

Sometimes, we experience things that are challenging. See them as opportunities for self-growth and inner peace. Wherever you are, love it and be thankful.

5 things to put on the top of your “thankful” list

  1. I am thankful for my breath at this moment.
  2. I am thankful for this life and the opportunities in this moment.
  3. I am thankful that the universe has everything in divine order.
  4. I am thankful for the love within me.
  5. I am thankful for the power of choice at this moment.

More dynamic than resolutions

The recipe for being better, happier and more successful in life is to be thankful. The best way to maintain a thankful heart and soul is to put affirmations into your daily practice. Daily affirmations are more powerful and dynamic than resolutions because they’re not a list of “want-to-do.” Rather, they reflect a mindset of “I am.”

Make affirmations your go-to when you wake each morning and before you retire each evening. Say these affirmations in the present tense and with conviction, and watch the better, happier, more successful you emerge.

Five powerful affirmations

  1. I know that, in the landscape of the universe, I am special.
  2. In this moment, I have no problems, because every breath is a new awakening.
  3. I have unique gifts of the soul that help others and myself.
  4. I have the power to choose whatever experience I desire.
  5. I am a being of love.

When I stopped making New Year resolutions, I evolved in more ways than imagined. A wonderful path filled with gratitude, love and health ignited. Overall well-being accelerated in my life. The beauty of it is that it spreads onto others. It is all about keeping that thankful light glowing in the darkness so that others can see through it as well.

I invite you to join me in this daily practice and enjoy the journey throughout the whole year, every year. Instead of seeing an end of one year and the beginning of the next, see this moment. Just be here, and be thankful for today. And no matter what, love yourself and shine that love on others. It is why we are here.

Lily Sanders is a noted author, speaker and coach who was recently awarded as one of the 15 top coaching experts in NYC. Her newly released book, Truth to Triumph, is a spiritual guide to finding your truth. Lily’s passion is for humanity, and she thrives on helping others live life at a deeper level. Follow Lily on FB, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram.