January has always been considered a time of new beginnings. Out with the old and in with the new…A time to forgive and forget…A time for a fresh start…Turn over a new leaf. Have I used enough of the New Year sayings yet?  I’m not crazy about January being a time for starting over. I know what you’re thinking. What is she thinking? How can she be so cruel? We all need a chance to start over, don’t we, a second chance?

My answer for you is, yes, I totally agree with you, we all at some point need a do-over.

Why do we relegate new beginnings to only January? Why do we make resolutions that we never keep?  Did you know it takes 21 days to start a new habit?  That is just three little weeks. We don’t need resolutions, we need lifestyle changes, and people in our lives that will help us carry out those changes.

Life is not meant to be done alone.

For someone who could be a great hermit, this is hard. The oldest of three children, I’ve been the matriarch of my family since I was 25 years old (I turned 40 on December 26th – you do the math!) because my mother died when I was 25 years old (my father had passed four years earlier). I’m thankful I had my husband. He held me when I cried, cheered me on when I thought I couldn’t take another day, and supported me when I thought I would shatter into 1000 pieces. We walked this path together. We were young and had no idea really what we were doing. We tried to be as normal as possible, and to ask for outside help was hard because all our friends had little babies and/or jobs, and because I did so much on my own, I have trouble – even today – asking for help.

I have some life-style changes I need and want to make. I’d like to lose some weight – it’s easier and cheaper than liposuction. I need to start taking vitamins again. I want to start planning my dinners a week in advance so I’m not making runs to the grocery store for one or two things multiple times a week. I want to try making my own detergent. The list goes on, so you get the idea. How I do these things is up to me, but it will be by the choices I make.

I am going to celebrate the small victories along the way, and remember that sometimes, the victory is when I choose to eat a small piece of birthday cake instead of a big ole’ honking one (I’m from the south, so make sure you put some suthen’ drawl on that, dahlin’). Waiting for the ends to justify the means can make you feel defeated. Defeat is not an option, so celebrate the small victories.  Life is too short not to!

It is a time of new beginnings; a time for lifestyle changes.

What are some of yours? Share them with me in the comments!

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2 Responses to Defeat is Not an Option

  1. Rebecca Pope-Ruark says:

    Good post, Ashley. I read in a blog somewhere that January is the worst time to make resolutions because you are so hungover from the stress of the holidays. This writer said she makes her resolutions in March when she is more in control and committed. Good luck with your small victories!

  2. Anne Boodheshwar says:

    I like that…I am still recovering from December…to soon to make life changes when I am just trying to get life back to “normal”. I agree to about the small things…that is really the way to take any change…babysteps! One day or hour at a time, whatever the case or day may be! Good luck!

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