Most people (even those who don't believe in New Year's resolutions) are thinking about what they would like to change during 2012. Most focus, however, on themselves – their health and their behaviour (for example, deciding to quit smoking or embark on an exercise regime).
In my clinical psychology practice, however, I advise my clients to think more broadly about this issue – to think about their relationships.
I therefore invite you to consider the current health of your relationships with:
1) Your partner/spouse, children and your family:
Ask yourself the following questions, for example…
Is your relationship as good as it can be? Are you able to be honest and authenitc with your spouse? Do you practise a way of interacting with your intimate partner which is respectful and considerate? When you asgue, do you do so in a constructive way, without resorting to "below the belt" tactics such as name-calling? (If there are problems in our intimate relationship it is invariably the case that the partner is blamed for this state of affairs. It is crucial that we each start by changing our own steps in our relationship dance!)
Are your relationhips with your children and your extended family as good as they could be? If you were to die tomorrow, have you told them how you feel about them or do you have "unfinished business"? Is your will up to date?
2) Your friends and co-workers:
Are you sufficiently supportive and "there" for your friends and co-workers? Are you reliable, dependable and empathic?
3) Your community and environment:
Are you involved in community and volunteer activities? Do you consider your environment and recycle, for example?
4) Your pets
If your pets were able to rate you in terms of how well you meet their needs, what grade would you get? If you have a dog, do you walk him/her every day?
I am sure there are many more examples out there in the same vein and I would be happy to receive your comments in this regard!
Of course, making resolutions is the easy part, like any form of behaviour change sticking to them consistently is a much more difficult thing and a topic in its own right for another post!