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Make a Habit of It

Updated: Jan 1, 2023

I don’t like New Year’s resolutions. I always feel like they set me up for failure. “I resolve to…” feels way too big and amorphous. Back in the fall, before the Jewish New Year, I set an intention to take on “

One Thing”. Some years it’s showing up on time. Other years it has to do with following through on tasks. This year, my focus has been on interpersonal communication. Specifically, I want to work on reacting calmly when someone offers me feedback (that is, not to get defensive.)

This is no easy task.

When feedback is offered, it’s so easy to put up our armor and say things to ourselves like, “I can’t believe he thinks that, does he know how hard I have worked on x, y or z?”

But when you think about it, it is very rare that someone offers feedback without good intentions in mind. They want a situation to improve or to help you become more insightful about your part in a dynamic.

So how do I plan on quieting the voice of defensiveness? It has to do with getting into a different habit.

The next time I am feeling that sinking feeling when someone offers me feedback or that rising armor of defense (can you relate?) I will have the intention of taking a deep belly breath and reciting to myself, “This too, is for my benefit.”

Returning to the breath.

Reciting a mantra or prayer.

For me, these will be the twin tools to put some distance between myself and the feedback, recognize it is for my own benefit, and bring a sense of calm to my inner world.

What’s your One Thing?

Blessings for the journey,


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