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Not-Your-Average-New-Year-Goal (and how to be happy in 2021)

Updated: Jan 8, 2021

Prefer to listen? Check it out on The Live On Purpose Podcast, available on iTunes and Spotify!

New Year energy is electric and sometimes overwhelming.

This week, your social media news feeds will undoubtedly be filled with lists of goals, 2021 aspirations and “bye 2020, see-you-never” sentiments. It might make you feel any number of emotions as you scroll your feed of choice while you consider your own goals and aspirations. And while goal setting is a beautiful, worthwhile practice for steering the direction of one’s life, there is a sneaky side to New Year’s Resolution energy that deserves to be considered.

Especially if you’ve found yourself feeling deflated already or comparing your life to everyone online who seems to have it all figured out.

I’m going to let you in on a little secret…

They don’t.

And neither do I.

Yup. We’re all just winging it, most of the time.

We’re basically throwing spaghetti at the walls of our life and waiting to see what sticks.

And nobody is posting their doubts, worries, fears and failures on The Gram by the way, but rest assured WE ALL have them.

It’s called the HUMAN experience.

Phew. Did you just relax your shoulders and unclench your jaw a little?

(If not, go ahead and do that now. Feel free to lift the corners of your mouth up a little too while you’re at it…hehe, see what I did there?)

See, the nature of goal setting is that we look ahead to the future to an outcome we desire that we currently do not have and then we figure out what we need to do to get there.

We want to lose weight, gain muscle, make more money, meet the love of our lives, travel, give back, make a difference, etc.

Again, it’s a beautiful, important practice to set goals in your life so that you can continuously work towards creating progress and growth for yourself.

I love some good goal setting excitement, truly I do.

But* (yes, here’s the sneaky bit to pay attention to), we do this thing where we project ourselves to a place where we aren’t currently and we say to ourselves “I’ll be so happy when (fill in the blank with your goals)”.

And then?

We don’t allow ourselves to enjoy the journey until we’ve reached “the destination”.

“I’ll be so happy when I lose 20lbs.”

“I’ll be so happy when I pay off my credit card debt.”

“I’ll be so happy when I meet the life partner of my dreams.”

Etc. etc. etc.

We tell ourselves that this, THIS is going to be the year where everything works out.

THIS is going to be the year where time will slow down and we’ll have time for ourselves.

THIS is going to be the sparkly-million-dollar-clear-skin-no-bloating-fittest-happiest-365-day-ride of our dreams where we can finally relax and everything will be perfect.

But that’s not how life works.

And that’s also not the point of goals…

The purpose of a goal isn’t to get, it’s to grow.

Who you become along the way towards that thing IS the point of it.

So, when we deny ourselves enjoyment of the present moment, which is after all the only place we can find our life, we deny ourselves the chance to live fully.

We’re so busy chasing the next goal that we think will bring us happiness and peace of mind, we forget that the secret to being happy is to do just that: be happy.

As in, to wake up and decide that no matter what happens outside of us, we will cultivate an attitude of gratitude and face the day looking for the good.


Consider these questions:

What would happen if you allowed yourself to make peace with where you are at WHILE working towards your own personal goals?

What would happen if you decided that you are willing to love yourself while getting excited for new, beautiful relationships to come into your life?

What would happen if you decided to appreciate the crap out of everything and everyone already in your life, while looking forward to more abundance to come?

What would happen if you decided you were willing to accept yourself exactly as you are, while you implemented good habits that increase well-being in your life?


2021 holds 365 opportunities for you to love you, your life and those in it.

Don’t rob yourself of any of those opportunities by projecting your happiness onto some future event or achievement.

(And definitely don’t compare yourself to anyone’s highlight reel or seeming perfection on the internet. Like I mentioned before, EVERYONE is handling their own ish the best way they can.)

The secret recipe for creating a life you love in 2021?

Wake up every day and decide that it’s going to be the best day of your life.

That’s not just a bumper sticker quote.

Really feel into that.

If you knew you were going to die tomorrow, what would you regret about not changing in your life?

Who would you become?

What habits would that person cultivate?

How would you treat others?

How would you spend your time?

What would you work on?

What would you let go of?

These questions, and any others that come up for you as you consider this, are the ones that will provide direction for you as you head into the new year.

So set goals that are meaningful to you.

Wake up and decide to make each day the best one yet.

And relax into the wonderful unfoldment that is your life, right here, right now.

I’m rooting for you & doing the work right alongside you.

Always in your corner,


ps - want to connect with Marie? Check out The Live On Purpose Podcast on iTunes or Spotify and sign up for Marie's weekly love letter and free morning gratitude meditation here.


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