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Yes, Resopooptions.  What exactly am I saying?  I’m saying that resolutions are basically poop.  They’re not good.  They stink.  They are uncomfortable.  They tend to bother other people and eventually they are flushed away.  I mentioned in my post from last week one of the reasons why I think this is, but I want to go more in depth now.

Studies have shown that 90% of all resolutions are about stopping something or getting rid of something (statistic completely made up).  Further, 95% of all resolutions fail (also made up).  Why?  Because making up statistics bolsters my point without me having to actually research said data.  That being said, we would all agree that resolutions fail far too often.  Once they fail, the resoluter feels defeated and has a lot of the worst fears about themselves confirmed.

Resolutions that are aimed at getting rid of negative or destructive behavior/traits are missing the mark.  They are aimed at the wrong target.  You see, unresolved hurts or hurts that have not been processed with comfort attached are what fuels these negative behaviors.  Anger, fear, guilt, and/or self condemnation are all the natural results of hurts you incurred in the first 12 or so years of your life.  Granted, there may have been some significant events that have happened at later ages that also have resulted in these destructive behaviors but the bulk come from your early years.

Again, the result of these hurts is what fuels these things you want to get rid of in your life.  Let’s list a few examples (completely made up but here to illustrate).  None of these examples are of the more horrific type that leave deep gaping wounds that obviously stick with you in the worst of ways but instead are things that you might think aren’t a “huge deal.”

1.  Your parents were too busy for you and you never received attention resulting in you feeling as if you were not important .

2.  Your parents divorced, many do, but YOURS did and you felt like normal good things (happily married parents) aren’t ever coming your way.

3.  You were an only child and your parents just doted over you.  They swarmed over you and monitored everything you did.  You couldn’t build relationships with peers as they were never “good enough” for you.  You could never make mistakes.

4.  Similar to #3 you had an expectation placed on you because your family had to be the best, nothing less was acceptable.  Acceptance was simply not an option.  Performance was all that mattered.

5.  You had a great family, or so it seemed.  Everyone laughed all the time.  The problem was, more often than not, you were all laughing AT each other and at each others expense.  You weren’t allowed to have “hurt feelings” because “we were just being silly” or “having fun.”  If you did get upset, you became a HUGE target for the next round of jokes.

6.  Mom and dad didn’t get divorced, or even separate, they just yelled…a lot.  Oh, it was mostly at each other but it could also go anywhere.  You walked on egg shells most of your life, not wanting to bother anybody lest you become the target of rage or derision.

7.  You only mattered as to the fact that you were your parents kids.  You were a direct representation of them.  What you wanted, what you needed, didn’t matter.  It was all about them.

8.  Your parents were “good” parents.  You had a roof over your head, food on your plate, help with your homework, activities to be involved in, and a church in which to be a member.  However, you never really  had anyone to talk to or express how you were feeling.  You had no one to cry to and much as you can remember you don’t ever remember wanting to cry because there was clearly no one comforting…it’s just not what they did.

9.  You were allowed to do anything you wanted.  You were just be told to be home by x’oclock.  When you got home, no questions were asked.  Your parents paid for everything and never ever punished you, for anything.  Good grades?  Great.  Bad grades?  No big deal.  In a way it was awesome.  In another way, it was almost like you weren’t even there and certainly wouldn’t be missed.

10.  Lastly, for now, the opposite of the last one.  Everything was the most important anything that ever mattered.  If you made a mistake or went against the grain, the hammer was dropped and consequences flowed.  You couldn’t breath let alone feel.

Again, these are random/general examples of homes that we all may have experienced.  These leave out tragic hurts that obviously create terrible wounds that need tremendous amounts of therapy.  Unfortunately, many of us have experienced these things on top of the more “mundane” hurts listed above.

Now, the results of all of the above range from detaching from our feelings and diving into work/achievement to destructive behaviors aimed at numbing the pain or maintaining some semblance of control in our life.  There are also the slippery consequences that lie in a simple lack of self worth that leave us not even wanting what is best for us.

So, on the one hand you have these life long  hurts that have fueled these negative and/or destructive behaviors for many many years.  On the other hand, you have a resolution based on a calendar as an attempt to fix said behavior or habit.  Which do you think is going to win?  Then, when you fail, the hurts from childhood (or any tragic event) are reinforced as you feel more like whatever you have been lead to feel about yourself.

No, the answer lies in attaching comfort to those hurts from long ago.  Remove or at least lessen the fuel from the fire.  On the blog pages of this site, search for “hurt” and check out those postings.  Also, almost at the bottom of each page off to the right, you will see a “topics” section.  Peruse the topics that attract your eye.

Above all else, take it easy on yourself.  Show some grace.  You are worth it.  Address and fix the inside and the outside will follow.  You are much more than what people or even you see.  You have more resolve than you could ever imagine.  If you are going to resolve to do anything this new year, make it toward healing…not fixing.

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