Life passes us by before we know it, but what can we do to make each day count so that we can live our lives to the fullest? If you really want to savor each moment and not have any regrets when it’s all said and done, here are five promises to make yourself today.
5 Life-Changing Promises to Make Yourself Right Now
1. I promise to choose my attitude each day
When you wake up, you have a choice. You can drag yourself out of bed, barely mutter to your loved ones, and complain about your day, or you could choose to put on a smile. Before each action, there is a moment’s pause when we have a choice. Choosing our facial expression and body language is reflective of our own attitude about how our day will progress.
In 1973 German researcher Dr. Ronald Grossarth-Maticek gave his subjects a survey on pleasure and well-being. In a follow up with the test subjects 21-years later, the researchers found that those who scored highest on their attitudes were 30 times more likely to be alive and well than those who had low scores. The study found that ‘the incidence of cancer and internal diseases over the next 10 years,’ could be correctly predicted 93% of the time by looking for those with the most negative ratings.
2. I promise to accept responsibility for my actions or inactions
Nothing happens to you, but it happens with you. You either choose to act in response to what happens or you choose to not act. You are a servant to no one. You’re the only person who chooses the food that goes in your mouth or doesn’t, whether you get up and go to work or not, and whether you choose to help a stranded motorist or not. That’s one of the best promises you can make.
3. I promise to forgive myself for my action or inaction of the past
Your judgment of your past action or inaction is how you define your feelings about what happened with (not to) you. You have a choice about how you feel about what happened and your response. If you feel negative emotions about the situation, then it is time to promise to forgive yourself for believing negative things about you based on what happened in the past. You can choose differently in the future based on what you now know.
4. I promise to love myself unconditionally
This is the most challenging of the five promises to make to yourself right now, because it is difficult for us to unconditionally love and accept ourselves. We judge ourselves in comparison to some standard that we have either created or accepted. Drop the standard. You are unlike any other. Love your unique, living self.
5. I promise to forgive others for their shortcomings
Although this might not seem like a promise that you are making to yourself each day, but a promise that is for others, it will help you in removing a burden that you may not have even realized that you were carrying around. There are beneficial health reasons that you might choose to forgive someone over not forgiving them: ‘Forgiveness is psychologically beneficial for victim and offender, influencing physical, mental, and social health,’ according to a psychological study on forgiveness, unforgiveness, faith and health.
In the book, The Handbook of Forgiveness, editor Everett Worthington, Jr. concludes that ‘Because people so frequently hurt each other, it is plausible that events requiring forgiveness occur in all types of relationships, even between childhood best friends or children and parents.’ The authors say that when one person hurts or offends another, ‘the other person suffers. The victim then must choose how to respond, in terms of internal thoughts, feelings, and motivations, as well as external behaviors to acknowledge the transgression but forgive the offender, or to refuse to forgive.’