The "Balancing" New Year's Resolution

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The "Balancing" New Year's Resolution

First, let's take a look at the basic matrix...

As you can see, the Matrix is very simple. You can draw it in less than a minute. (Even if you were up late partying last night.) Next we'll add names to the four quadrants framed up by the matrix.

Then we'll take a look at how a New Year's Resolution can be viewed through the matrix.


Who's important to You?

We write who's important into the lower right quadrant.

This is the most important section when it come to Resolutions. Maybe You are important, maybe others in your life.

 Do think "Who's Important" will change to you as you live next year?


What's Important to You?

Stuff like work, hobbies and education also go in the lower right part of the matrix. At the beginning of the year what's important to you may be different than at the end of the year.

Can you see a problem with valuing "what" more than "who"?


Inside of all humans

there are thoughts, feelings, urges and more. Sometimes, instead of helping us move toward who's important to us, this "stuff" can show up and get in the way.

Stuff like fear, pain, frustration and more can stop us in our tracks because they feel "yucky."

Think about yucky stuff (fear, pain, ego, anger, etc.) that might show up and get in the way of your resolutions.

If you resolved to quite smoking, what yucky stuff might show up and get in the way?

If you resolved to lose weight, what yucky stuff might show up?

If you resolved to get more organized, what yucky stuff might show up?

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Yucky stuff feels bad

and we do behaviors to get away from the yucky stuff. An away move can be as simple as shifting in your chair because your butt hurts; when you shift you get relief from pain. Of course we can also avoid fear by avoiding events. We also might yell at people to get away from anger and frustration.

What might you do to move away from tired?

What might you do to move away from your hurt ego?

What might you do to move away from cravings?

What might you do to move away from feeling overwhelmed?

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Stuck Loops

Getting Stuck is Human

We all get stuck from time to time

Everyone has one or more stuck loops. It's easy to wnat to get relief from anxiety and stress and such, and get stuck.

Do you have any stuck loops?

For some of us, New Year's resolutions are about getting out of stuck loops.

Toward moves

go in the upper right of the matrix. Toward moves can add deep meaning to your life.

These are resolutions to do "more." More giving, socializing, etc.

As always, you do things and keep doing what works.


Breaking Out of Stuck Loops Resolutions?

Breaking out of stuck loops

can be a Resolution. People often resolve to stop smoking, eating, playing video games, etc.

Notice the word "Relief" on the left side with the Away loops. That means when you stop doing something (like eating or smoking) you are going to be losing relief, and losing relief does not feel good. You might end up seeking relief all the more.

That's why it's really important to replace the relief with satisfaction over on the toward side of the matrix.

Many people have found that noticing as they move a couple of minutes per day over to the Toward side works well.


The "Balancing" Resolution Is All About Time

Away versus Toward?

Out of a 24-hour day, how much time do you spend doing away versus toward moves?

You can learn a lot  about yourself by noticing how you balance the Away and Toward moves each day.

You could even resolve to find a more workable away versus toward balance in the coming year. 

Over my seven years of doing the Matrix, this "Time Balancing" resolution has become my daily resolution.

Try it and you may learn that it works for you!


Wishing You a Happy and "Balanced" New Year!!!


From Bill
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Dear Dr, Polk It has been 2 years since I came across your creative way of doing ACT. At the time I read your first book. Ever since I've been watching your clips in the ACT Matrix Academy. A few months ago I bought your second book. Then everything fell into its right place. So, basically this is a thank you email. I have learned so much from your attitude and work, though we have never met. There is one more thing that I learned from you - the act of giving. I am writing a free guiding book for parents in Hebrew (nearly finished). I think that every parent and teacher should get know the matrix perspective. All of the psychologists that I supervise are familiar with this perspective. I wonder whether you might want to add your preface to the book. Best, Yossi

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