Oftentimes, the New Year brings forth an immense amount of pressure to shape up, perform, and "finally do things right." We're often really, really hard on ourselves when it comes to our resolutions. Let's change that, babes. We're doing the best we can!
Furthermore, there is immense pressure and expectation around the holidays, so although there is beautiful sacred symbolism embedded in the New Year celebration, it can be quite overwhelming, and oftentimes, it's the time we begin to be incredibly hard on ourselves and our bodies.
The truth is, it doesn't take a whole year to create conscious and sustainable change, and it takes a lot less than a year to fall off the wagon and break the promises you made to yourself. Does that resonate with you? I've seen it happen time and time again with myself—and my clients. Through my desire to change this so we all can feel more empowered, I discovered a new way to approach resolutions, without the shame or expectation around the "perfect body" or "losing the 10 pounds you gained this year."
Here are five simple and easy-to-stick-to intentions that will bring you back into alignment with who you really are—so you, too, can begin to start feeling empowered and powerful this year!
1. Love thyself
This year, unapologetically accept yourself. No more berating, no more self-deprecation, no more self-judgment or self-loathing. The antidote for all the mean things you've been saying to yourself: 11 minutes of dancing in front of the mirror daily, naked. It's intense—I know this because when this assignment was given to me during Kundalini training, it took me two months into the course to actually start doing it every day.
Dance to a song or a mantra that makes you feel alive and beautiful. Be sure to look into your own eyes, feel your soul. Look at your gorgeous body. The curves that make you you. You may laugh. You may cry. Each day may bring up a new feeling, of appreciation, of understanding, of compassion. I promise you this will be the most powerful ritual you do every day.
2. Go au naturel
Say farewell to processed foods, refined sugars, and anything you can't pronounce. This goes for foods and beauty products. Your body is your temple—treat it with respect, and it will respect you. The weight gain, the hormone imbalances, the weak digestion, and poor immunity are all tied to environmental toxins and chemical load on the body from the food we are eating and the products we are using.
This is precisely why I love making Ajai, my own essential-oil-based beauty and self-care products. I have made a conscious decision to use only organic botanical ingredients in order to free my skin, and I have had the best skin I've had in years, I've lost stubborn weight around my belly, and my thyroid is much happier. I always ask, if you wouldn't eat it, why would you put it on your face?
3. Kiss Mother Earth
Our precious Mother Earth cannot stick around forever if we don't step up and treat her with more love. Let us all recycle, bring our own reusable bags to the market, use rags instead of paper towels, and pick up trash on the beach. These are just a few of the very easy conscious choices we can all make to kiss the ground we walk upon, so she can kiss us back for generations to come. I notice that when I clean up my external environment, my internal environment shines, too.
4. Be your own alchemist.
This past year, I began experimenting with essential oils to nourish and support my thyroid (I have the autoimmune condition Hashimoto’s hypothyroiditis), and as I learned more about the incredible healing potential of nature's medicine cabinet, I began to create my own blends. I became empowered in my own self-healing, adopting holistic rituals to support my vitality. The simple self-care ritual of rolling lemongrass and peppermint on my neck every day while repeating a mantra has radically changed my life. I also created Grace Alchemy, a rose and patchouli blend that makes all men within a 10-foot radius swoon.
There are hundreds of powerful essential oils that can promote healing from conditions ranging from thyroid disease to chronic congestion, fatigue, weight gain, and hormonal imbalances. When you're choosing your essential oils, be sure to research the source—I swear by certified-organic, therapeutic-grade essential oils sourced sustainably, supporting the livelihoods of our growers around the world.
5. Stay committed
Remember that change doesn't happen overnight, and the longer we have been stuck in subconscious patterns—maybe even those that date back to our mothers or grandmothers—the longer it will take us to dig ourselves out. When you stray from the essence of your intention, don't berate yourself. Instead, gently remind yourself of your commitment, and at the same time, stay firm in your resolve. In order to really see changes in my body and relationships, I learned that I needed to commit to my daily practice—every day, not "almost every day."
Because if we only commit "almost every day," we will "almost have the relationship" or "almost have the career" or "almost feel good in our bodies." It doesn't have to be a two-hour daily practice—it can be something so simple as repeating the same mantra to yourself before bed every single night or starting your day with the same meditation or breathwork practice. What works for me is writing down my self-care routine at the top of my daily action plan, so I do it before checking social media or emails—because we all know where that leads…. Stay committed to yourself, because you are worth it.
We are at a critical time on this planet, a time when there is massive fear and suffering, and I believe that in order to create a shift, we must treat ourselves with kindness, compassion, and dignity. And instead of treating the new year as a time where we beat ourselves up and feel really guilty for everything we didn't do this past year, let's resolve to be more conscious and more inspired.
So this year, I urge you to get cozy with a cup of tea and look at where you can find more creativity in your life, where you can be more mindful, where you can become your own alchemist, and where you can love yourself more. Then get out your calendar and plan to set aside some time on the next full moon and new moon to revisit your intentions and praise your efforts.
You have everything to gain by going deep.