Welcome back!

We hope you had a fantastic holiday and are eager for what 2015 has to bring.

As we think about our New Year's resolutions and what we want to accomplish, it's very important to keep one thing in mind:

It's Not All About Achievement

Whilst setting goals and being focused on where you want to be can help you live with drive and focus, there's more to life than ticking things off a list.

Try making one of your goals to simply live in the moment and enjoy what is happening now.

Having mindfulness for simple, everyday activities can help you enjoy the little things, and stop the New Year from becoming too stressful.

Here's what Exisle Author Chris Skellet has to say on the subject:

The more that we strive to achieve, the more we lose sight of the importance of appreciating the quality of the moment. We are always looking ahead, pushing through the inclination to accept the status quo, and we drive ourselves to challenge complacency.

For goal-oriented achievers, it can almost become a perceived weakness to enjoy the moment.The fear is that we will lose our motivation if we pause too long to appreciate the world. These are the folk who, when out for a walk, don’t like to look at the view for long. Instead, they like to get going again as soon as they can. They seem impatient.

If you feel that you carry a strong preference for achievement, then it might just be that you need to deliberately schedule periods of ‘down time’ for yourself to be appreciative. Cups of tea while gardening, phoning a friend at morning tea, or standing outside to take a few deep breaths and to gaze at the sky ... these small micro-breaks can be wonderfully energising and give us renewed vigour with which to address the day.

In our busy lives, we often forget the importance of letting go and relaxing. Pausing to re- flect can seem like such a waste of time and is generally undervalued. Typically, people struggle to formally list what their relaxing hobbies or leisure activities might be. Since the advent of television and computer games, we tend to slump passively before a screen and simply allow technological stimulation to wash over us.

We often say that we enjoy TV, but the majority of time spent watching a screen simply results in a dull, brain-numbing state where the awareness of real-life experience is suspended. TV is high on the list of ‘unhealthy pleasures’. Here, we cocoon ourselves with a warm glow of self-soothing, but we diminish the sense of feeling alive.

Authentic, real-life pleasure is usually to be found in natural experiences, such as watching waves on a beach, laughing with a friend or feeling the warmth of the sun on your face.

Opportunities for healthy pleasure abound. If we are truly mindful of our surroundings, then we can find enjoyment everywhere.
More than anything, enjoyment is a state of mind.

From “When Happiness Is Not Enough” By Chris Skellet, Available From Exisle Publishing

Get excited about the New Year and what you want to achieve...

... but remember to enjoy the simple process of living!

We'll see you soon with more tools and resources,
Nathan Thomas

Exisle Empowerment Editor