This year I vow to play in the arena! Will you?

This year I vow to play in the arena! Will you?

As I sit here and ponder my new years resolution, I realize I have so much to be proud of that I accomplished in 2015. It was the journey of a lifetime and I feel so blessed to have been through it. I’ve learned so much and I feel happier than ever – both inside and out.

A great friend of mine said something last night that truly resonated with me and I thought I’d share. She said that we often set these HUGE resolutions in January, only to fail within months. Imagine, if instead, we set daily intentions. Daily intentions that we know are achievable so at the end of the day, we feel grateful for our small achievement. I loved this…I am all about making small goals and feeling grateful for the happiness they bring – thanks Kat Stillwell for sharing.

So this year. I am going to take her idea, and do it a little differently! I am going to set a resolution and allow for my daily intentions to follow in the same direction. This will accomplish two things for me…..each day I will achieve something and be grateful for it…and secondly, I will be working towards my resolution, without even focusing too much on it….interesting eh??? I might actually achieve my FIRST RESOLUTION EVER – YIPPPEEE!

Before I set this resolution, I want to share with you a quote from Brene Brown’s book, Daring Greatly. This was apart of a speech written by Teddy Roosevelt.

It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly.”

Ok, so I bet your wondering how this has to do with my resolution? Well, if you know me, then you know I’m very open and will tell everyone my life story, if they are willing to listen. This is strength and a weakness for me. I think the reason I do this is to get people’s approval – to hear what they have to say – and to see how it can somehow connect with me. However, it usually doesn’t work that way. I can’t seem to separate the good from the bad and this often results in self-talk that’s negative, critical and judgmental. So I get tons of opinion – even from myself – but file them in a way to encompasses me.

So when I read the quote above, something really stuck out for me. I am in the arena. I am the one being vulnerable and brave and willing to put it all out there. I am confident in who I am and who I’ve become. This year, I am willing to continue telling my story, however, I will be more aware and willing to guard myself on which opinions matter the most.

So whose opinions should matter when you are playing in the arena? They are people doing the same – the ones being themselves, their imperfect selves and willing to lay in all on the line with no reservations. They are the ones that in 2016, I am going to focus on. They are ones whose opinions will matter. They are the ones who will be empathetic and will listen to your story without judgment, criticism or comparison. They are the ones you should truly trust and be grateful for their presence.

As we know, there are always others in the arena – watching, staring, judging and criticizing. They are waiting for you to fail and are the first ones to tell you, you did. They will always be there, no matter where you go in life, but this year, as Brene Brown says, I will reserve them seats in my arena, know of their presence, hear their opinions, and most importantly, LET THEM GO! Why? Because they aren’t worthy! They aren’t playing in the arena and are no longer worth the time and effort of anything else, but their reserved seats.

Now, when I hear their opinions, I will stop, take a breath, be kind, and move on. I will be proud of who I am – knowing I’m far from perfect, but confident in who I’ve become. I will acknowledge the reserved seats however, file them totally different that I ever did before. Now, this isn’t easy, and trust me, its still a work in progress. But, if you know who you are and are playing in the arena, you will always face challenge and criticism along the way (whether from your own self or others), however, its what you do with them that allows you to either continue your journey or give up…and if you give up, you never really believed in yourself in the first place!

So as you can see, being in the arena, is SUPER SCARY. This is why it’s my 2016 resolution.

So here it is: I am fully in the arena. I am willing to be me and to accept both the good and the bad that come with it. If you are playing in the arena , then your opinion matters to me…if you aren’t, you area always welcome to sit in my reserved section and your opinion matters, but will never impact who I will become.

Each day, I will cultivate this resolution and my intention will continue to guide me on this journey. I will build my strength and courage in the arena and I will NO longer focus on the negative things that come out of it.

So today, ask yourself, where are you?

Imagine if you were the person you really wanted to be? You followed you passion and your dreams?

If you died tomorrow, would you have any regrets? If so, then maybe its time to start playing in the arena.

See you next time.