What If You Resolved to Let Something Go Rather Than Add Something This New Year?

by Amy Nobles Dolan

Editor’s Note: This is a reflection offered by Amy Nobles Dolan on her website, Yoga With Spirit, that was inspired by our series Rest & Renew. We could think of no better way to end this series than by sharing with you some of the fruits of inspiration that have been harvested through this work we’ve done in the month of January! Please take some time and enjoy Amy’s site, where she explores yoga as a spiritual practice, offers classes, shares reflections, and much more. Thank you, Amy, for sharing this with us!

A new approach to New Year’s resolutions.

On New Year’s Day, just as I was debating possible New Year’s resolutions, I received an email that inspired me to toss most of my ideas out the proverbial window. The message came from a web community called The Hive, a “home for wellness, spirituality and growth,” founded by a dear friend. In it, the author suggested a very different approach to resolutions. Why not, she asked, let something go rather than take something on?

This question held a lot of appeal to me since, when I reflect on 2019, my most my significant reaction is “busy.” Perhaps I’m not alone here?

Busy-ness as a fortress.

Please keep in mind that being busy is not uncomfortable for me. In fact, I’m pretty sure I’m hardwired for motion, action, doing. (This is, in part, why the movement of yoga is such a profoundly good way for me to get myself to be still.) But I really went overboard last fall creating my post-full-time-mother life. Once again, I’ve learned that, even with good things, there is such a thing as too much, too fast, too full.

In fact, for the past few months, out of the quiet space of my yoga practice the idea has started to blossom that the life I created when I built my “empty nest” feels a little like a fortress. In hindsight, I see that, as is my lifelong habit, I have once again chosen motion, action and doing. Rather than letting myself experience the extra space and quiet and freedom that could have been mine when I dropped my youngest child off at college, I panicked at the thought of being bored, feeling useless and feeling lonely.