Time for a rewrite!! You've put another year to bed and now you get to decide if you like the program you've been living or if the next episode needs some tweaking or perhaps a major overhaul. You can make subtle or significant changes to the show. You can write an entirely different script or you can simply change the dialogue. You could add more interesting or supportive characters, and drop the characters that don't help drive the storyline. You can add more action or more contemplation. You have ultimate control over how your story unfolds.
What changes do you want in your story? A new business. Less eating. Gentler words. Reconnection with old friends or making new ones. Meditating. More physical activity. Stopping self-medication. Building a garden or a boat. There are so many ways to fill your story with your personal values or your own goals. What are yours?
The first task in a rewrite is to decide what you want to change that will promote the story you want told. Of course, the follow through gets tough when the weeks begin to roll into old patterns, so vigilance is paramount.
Here are some very clever ways to make those changes, then keep them in place after making them.
1. Set SMART goals (specific, measurable, actionable, realistic, and time-based).
2. Plan to reward yourself at specific intervals. Rewards reinforce your behaviors and make the process fun.
3. Then, plan to have dire consequences for not meeting your goals. Take on a chore you loathe and would never do. Better yet, make a painfully significant donation to an organization whose philosophy and activities go against your principles!
4. Keep a record of your efforts and accomplishments. Then, be sure to give yourself the rewards or take the “punishment” you planned.
5. Ask a friend to support your efforts and keep you accountable.
6. Work with a therapist to help explore any roadblocks to your success.
The changes in your script can be attained with a little planning and a lot of fun. And meeting your commitment to life-affirming goals can be very rewarding in itself.
Happy New Year! Happy Rewrite!
Marilyn Miller, MS, LPC ~ Psychotherapist
...Delighting every day in helping people find peace in their lives, relieving anxiety, depression, and promoting self-care.