Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Happy New Year

Looking back over the years I cannot remember a time when I actually stuck to any of the new year’s resolutions I set myself. Predictably, I would vow to lose weight and go to the gym (or join a class, start jogging, get a personal trainer...) to get fit. Those two were invariably at the top of my list. Number three would often be something to do with my work/life balance, promising myself that I would rest more, take better care of myself, meditate or have more candle lit baths, spend more one on one time with Jasper and Evie. The implication underlying all my new year’s resolutions was that I was not OK as I was. I had to improve myself. I had to lose weight, get fitter and work out how to be the best possible working mum I could be. Those things achieved, I imagine I thought my life wold be so much better. So much more… what?

I’ve had it with new year’s resolutions. I’ve had it for a while now, I confess. I don’t think I set any last year and I won’t be setting any this year either. I’ve had enough of focusing on what I want to change in my life, on promising to do things differently. I’m fed up with ending up on January 1st right back where I was the previous year, only a little bit worse, faced with my lack of willpower and failure to achieve even one of my objectives. I’ve decided let myself be. I don’t want to do anything to prove to myself or anyone else that I’m OK, that I’m not complacent about myself and my achievements, that I know how imperfect I am. I am fully conscious of all those things and, nevertheless, I am choosing not to put myself under any more pressure. In 2012 I will be how I will be. The good, the bad and the ugly. No new year’s resolutions.

Wishes, hopes and dreams… of those I have a few:

I wish for good health (my own and my family’s).

I have a wish that my children will continue to flourish and thrive and that I keep working at my (now 25 year) relationship with Ben so that it can get better and better, even when it’s tough.

I have a wish that our new book; Beyond Temptation (which comes out on September 6th 2012) will be successful - by which I mean I hope that I can read it with pride and satisfaction - and that anyone who reads it will enjoy it and get something out of it.

I have a dream of Chocolate Fairies all over the UK and across the world (why not!) offering women an alternative to the relentlessness of dieting and body hatred.

I have a wish that Audrey, Clare and I continue to have as much fun and laughter and passion in our running of Beyond Chocolate as we have had to date.

"What's the difference between a hope, wish or dream and a resolution?" you may be thinking. The difference is, I won’t work at them or hold myself to any of the above. I won't try to make them happen or beat myself up if they don't. And not one of them mentions weight loss, healthy eating or exercise. This time next year I won't be looking back to see how I've measured up and that feels so much kinder and more generous than committing, promising, vowing to make changes and be a better person, year after year.

So, I have made one new year’s resolution after all: no more new year’s resolutions. Come to think of it, I made that one last year. And, wonder of wonders, miracle of miracles, I kept it! I think it’s the only new year’s resolution I have ever kept for an entire year.

Wishing you all a very Happy New Year



  1. Like you, my NY resolutions would be about changing myself somehow. Anything that would improve myself, just to let me forget how unsatisfied I was with myself and my life. The last 2 years have been trying to change my thought, not my possessions, weight or hair colour in a desperate attempt to make me happy. This year? I do have a resolution, or wish as you call it (I like it!) - to be more patient and kind to myself. That's the kind of resolution I wish more people would pursue! Happy new year all BC-ers! Xxxx

  2. That's a lovely blog, Sophie, and I hope your wishes work out in whatever way they are supposed to. I remember always taking a wish when we stirred the christmas pudding and every year mine was to lose weight! I think my wish this year to to be present for myself as much as I can and to make the most of the things I like (including my BC-inspired new-found love of swimming)as much as I can. And as Tali says - to be patient and kind to myself..and even if I forget, to not beat myself up about it!
    Many thanks for your inspirational blogs!

  3. I just read this article which I thought you guys might find interesting.

    It seems science is FINALLY catching up with what we knew all along. And yet still the perception remains that fat people are lazy and lack willpower.

  4. Dear Sophie,

    I feel exactly the same. My mantra lately has been 'There is nothing to be changed, nothing to be solved. I am what I am, my life is just fine as it is' and more things along those lines. It's so much more restful and achievable! Even though my gremlins make sure to remind me that NO YOU'RE NOT FINE AS YOU ARE and I have a hard time shooing them away! My NY wish this year is exactly the same as yours: to be at peace with myself and my life, while of course keeping working at everything I enjoy, love and need.

    Happy New Year!


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