Are you on the ‘new year, new you’ bandwagon? What are your resolutions? I actually adore this time of year as so many (myself included) aren’t just open to new ideas and a new us but are eager to try. I think an annual fresh burst of optimism and enthusiasm is a good and necessary thing. I believe this to be true regardless of our results.

That being said, I’m repeating my resolution from last year. No, I’m not repeating it because I failed. For the first time in quite a while, I followed through with my 2018 resolution. Want to know what it was and how I succeeded?!

My resolution was to change my toothbrush more regularly.

Yep, that’s it. And I did change my toothbrush more regularly throughout the year.

clean mouth teeth dentist
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

It did start as a bit of joke, but it has a deeper meaning to me now. Brushing is a tiny habit that’s part of most of our daily lives. A tiny, insignificant habit which I barely noticed. Half asleep, I could do it without thought. I didn’t even notice it.  Have you noticed yours? Is it well-worn, past what the manufacturer recommends? Do you even notice your toothbrush? What color is it?

In previous years, I set many large and lofty goals to better myself and the world. I failed each time (often in January). Hence the joke of changing my toothbrush as my 2018 resolution.

In doing it though, I had to pay attention to something small. I couldn’t just go on autopilot with my thoughts either racing forward to future concerns or back to past mistakes. I had to be in that moment – pause, breathe, and see what was right in front of me.

Are you seeing the deeper meaning now? 😉

If you’ve read anything else I’ve written then you may already know I train in martial arts. We train to be in the moment – no anticipation, no judgment, simply be. The Japanese term is mushin (no mind). This is so much harder than it sounds. I’ve trained for over a decade and still struggle. I am a planner by nature which means I analyze, research, and plot accordingly. This requires I look into the past to learn and into the future to plan. Being in the moment and simply floating down the River Zen aren’t my things despite the fact that I also do yoga and meditate.

amazing balance blur boulder
Photo by Nandhu Kumar on Pexels.com

BTW, if you haven’t tried meditation, it is hard and takes practice. Back to my toothbrush though…

I didn’t notice it each day at least not at first. It was a gradual change, but I did start paying attention to that single moment each morning and night. Doing that helped me focus on the task in front of me – I prefer the term task to moment as it suits my planning nature. If I’m driving, I don’t stress over what I’ve moving away from or toward. Instead, I pay attention to the drive.

A small, insignificant thing like brushing my teeth rippled out to bigger changes. It wasn’t part of my research or plan, but it happened.

nature water drops of water liquid
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

No, I still don’t surf the River Zen. Yes, I still plan. However, I have changed. I changed because I started noticing my toothbrush.

So, I’ll repeat my first question – what color is your toothbrush?

I will also pose another question – is it time for you to change your toothbrush?

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