Why I don't set New Year's resolutions (and what I do instead)

The scientist does not study nature because it is useful; he studies it because he delights in it, and he delights in it because it is beautiful.
— Henri Poincare

As we prepare to enter a new year I'm sure many of us have spent some time reflecting on what's transpired throughout the course of 2018. Reflection is such a beautiful practice because it allows us to hone in on what we want to change, or maybe stay the same, in 2019.

I've had a LOT of ups and downs over the last 12 months, from helping my dad get back on his feet after my sister's death to stepping into my mastery with Reiki to being by my grandmother's side in hospice the days leading up to losing her, too.

I've learned so much about myself through all of this, including some of my many strengths and weaknesses.

I recognized how driven and ambitious I am in my work AND how much my life was lacking in play and pleasure.

I embraced my strength when faced with difficult situations AND also let myself fall apart in the arms of those I love when I couldn't hold it all on my own any longer.

I began to shapeshift myself in my relationships by learning how to be a better listener and communicate what I need to feel safe and secure AND unraveled a lot of worthiness issues so that I could realize that I deserve to feel that way.

I know this is the time of year when a lot of people embark on setting their New Year's resolutions.

"I'm going to lose ten pounds."

"I'm going to meditate every damn day."

"I'm going to meal plan every week."

"I'm going to win the lottery!" (Ok, maybe that's just wishful thinking...)

You catch my drift.

Personally, I'm not a huge fan of setting the stereotypical New Year's resolutions because they're often unattainable due to the day-to-day fluctuations in our lives.

Also, I find that if/when we don't succeed at them right away, or we "fall off the wagon" for a few days here or there (and then maybe lose steam altogether) we can begin to see ourselves as failures when the truth is, we're probably doing the best that we can in that moment.

I want to tell you that if you choose to set resolutions I'm totally down with that, but please, please know that if you don't stick to each and every one for all of 2019 (or hell, even if you don't stick to them for a week) you are still simply amazing.

Instead of setting year-long resolutions, my practice for the last several years has included selecting a Word of the Year (WOTY).

For me, the word I choose is something I'm looking to embody and embrace wholeheartedly, using it as a sort of compass as I navigate the wheel of the year. It's something I can keep coming back to and use as an anchor to remind myself that I have the power to choose how I want to feel and what's important to me. (I find that this especially helps when navigating challenging times.)

For 2018 I had selected the word ALLOW because at the end of 2017 my life was basically a dumpster fire and I was choosing to focus on going with the flow, letting go of what I couldn't control, and taking life moment by moment instead of wracking my brain and body with worry. I succeeded, some of the time...

For 2019, the word I've chosen is DELIGHT. I landed on this word as I prepared to celebrate the holidays with my family and could truly tap into what it felt like to be delighted.

What are the words that come to mind when you hear the world delight?

For me, it's most of the following.










Through some work in therapy this year I realized that I've never really had the opportunity to prioritize fun, play, and enjoyment because of my upbringing and having had to grow up too fast. I think at times I've even avoided moving towards a more fun and playful existence because it didn't feel "right" or safe, especially since this isn't something valued in our current culture.

This is part of my shadow that motherhood has brought out into the light. Sometimes I find it challenging to know how to play with my son, but when I can let him show me the way and engage at his level it becomes easy and I can relax into it AND enjoy it.

Learning how to play with him and diving into self-development work even deeper with my coach the last few months has also led to profound inner child healing. By choosing to seek out delight in 2019 I have no doubt that even more healing will happen.

I feel a little silly sharing this, but I truly want to prioritize pleasure and feeling good. Feeling good in my body, in my relationships, in my home, in my work, and in my general existence. I want to consistently embody what it feels like when every ounce of my being can intensely connect with and feel full of joy and that sense of utter delight and contentment.

I'll be sharing some more about this next weekend during the ALIGN day retreat where I'll be teaching about meditation, intuition, and imagination, and you'll find details at the bottom of this post.

I hope that however you choose to ring in 2019 that it's deeply fulfilling for you, whether you spend it alone or with family and friends. And if it's not, know that that's ok, too. If you're looking for 1:1 guidance to help heal the parts of you that hurt and create an action plan to move forward we can set up a time to talk - just hit reply and I can send you more info.

Do you have a WOTY for 2019? If you do, I'd love it if you shared it with me over on Instagram and tag me in your post or on your story.

Happy New Year!

In love + heart service,


Are you a dreamer looking to channel your intuition and ALIGN with your power? Are you looking for a day escape to spark a fire? Join us for a day of mindful movement, powerful presentations and opportunities to connect to other inspirational souls.

I'm so excited to be part of ALIGN: a day retreat designed for dreamers right at the start of the new year! This day will be filled with opportunities to connect with yourself and the other amazing women. My session is just one of several wonderful workshops to be held on 1/5/2019 at Thayer Homestead in Medway, MA.

Embrace Your Inner Superpowers with Kendalyn Banks
In this workshop, you’ll learn how to find more flow in your life by mastering your mind through meditation, developing the ability to envision the life you truly desire by calling on your imagination, and trusting yourself to step into the future you're longing to create by connecting with your intuition.

See the rest of the line up and purchase your ticket here.

Kendalyn BanksComment