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  • Peg Hunt

What is Your Vision for the New Year?

Welcome to 2023! New year, new YOU!! Am I the only one to feel the pressure? Here’s a confession: I HATE new year’s resolutions. I don’t make them. They have never made me feel good and empowered. Even the word “resolution,” from “resolve,” lets you know it’s all about will power. If I could harness enough will, I could be perfect!

So, not a fan of resolutions. But I AM a fan of VISION. Vision is about having a picture of the future you want for yourself—in some ways it’s about the horizon, whereas resolutions focus on the path (but often are vague about the most important question of “where am I going? And why is that important to me?”). When you have a picture of the horizon, then you know where you want to go and you can get there in so many different ways. If one strategy doesn’t work out, you can pick a new one; if a strategy emerges that you hadn’t thought of, take it! Having a vision is hopeful and gives you direction without creating the succeed/fail dichotomy of resolutions.

A vision will also keep you motivated over the long term. Most of us have trouble sustaining passion for resolutions that involve “shoulds” or “what others expect of me”. Instead, think about what you want your life to be in five years (or ten years). Think about what inspires you or what has meaning for you. Let this future vision of yourself be the starting point. Here’s a personal example. My husband and I want to spend more time doing things like hiking, spending time with family and friends, and living more intentionally. So, my vision for myself is to create time and space for this. Easier said than done, but I know it means spending less time on things that I don’t really want to do (like massive yard work projects or house maintenance). This vision leads to the question of how do I spend less time on house stuff (possible answers: Pay for it? Move into a house with less maintenance? Tolerate an unkempt yard?). All of this means that my partner and I need to sit down and start prioritizing our time and money to support our vision. For me, this is a more inspiring approach to the new year than making a to-do list every weekend about what we need to get done. I know another person who hates exercise but has a vision on being an involved grandmother—that vision links her to weight training (so she can more easily lift her grandchildren) and yoga (flexibility--so she can get down on the ground and play).

In the end, taking time to articulate your vision for yourself creates the motivation to take meaningful action. Rather than creating a bunch of resolutions that will end up on the shelf collecting dust by February, how about starting 2023 by clarifying your vision for yourself-- what makes you feel alive? what does your best-self look like? what are unmet needs you want to honor? The point here is not to focus on your problems or deficiencies but to stay in the place of what energizes you. Then, when you are deciding what to do, what path to take, etc., you have your vision to guide you.

One way to support yourself in change is to work with a coach. At the most basic level what I do is help clients identify what is most important and then help them translate that vision into actions. I support clients to stay in that place of motivation and am a great accountability partner as clients strive to take actions toward their desired future. Please contact me at

© Anne Garing, PhD & Peg Hunt, MS

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