I’m sure many of my fellow anglophiles have joined me in watching The Crown, a TV series about the early reign of Queen Elizabeth II. Rare is the show that manages to give me goosebumps numerous times!
One such instance is in Season 1, Episode 2, when Queen Elizabeth II is preparing to depart the plane after landing in London right after the passing of her father, King George VI. She is handed a letter, addressed to her from her grandmother, Queen Mary, and the words are especially powerful:
“I have seen three great monarchies brought down from their failure to separate their personal indulgences from duty…While you mourn your father, you must also mourn someone else: Elizabeth Mountbatten, for she has now been replaced by another person, Elizabeth Regina. The two Elizabeths will frequently be in conflict with one another. The fact is, the crown must win — must always win.”
This quote resonated with me because I can translate much of this into current day life where many have sacrificed a better life due to personal indulgences (and not of the good kind!). Many times throughout your life, you are called upon to act in a different capacity; in a Self other than what you may have known for so long. When you become a parent, marry, accept a promotion, or experience or desire some other major life change (stop smoking, lose weight, become a Duchess!), there is a new gravitational pull and sometimes it can be upsetting and/or unsettling. It is uncharted territory that can often be frightening yet rewarding at the same time. Who you were and who you need to be now are often at odds but it is the “Crown”, your best Self that either you or life is requiring of you right now, which must win over temporary negative indulgences that only serve the “old” you.
As we prepare to wrap up the third week of the New Year, and our eyes are aglow with the prospect of a fresh start, I felt that reflection on the above couldn’t come at a more perfect time. I’m sure Duchess Kate is not new to the experience of the need to separate from old personal indulgences or habits that no longer serve her. We have seen her transform when she married Prince William and when she became a mother. We will continue to see her ever evolving.
Whether you are in the presence of a major life change, or are just reveling in the energy of this New Year with new found enthusiasm for resolutions to cultivate a better Self, it is reassuring to know that the Duchess is no stranger to the same struggles. I could see her keeping in mind the following as she steps into the New Year with her best foot forward.
Actualize the Goal in Your Mind
Whatever you are striving towards, what will it look like when you get there? Why do you want to get there in the first place? Why will this goal create a better you? Why will this goal make you happy? Yes, these questions are plentiful but like the Duchess, you only have so much time in a day.
It is important to expend your energy only on goals that are absolutely worth it. It is far better to have only a couple of resolutions rather than many where you are spreading yourself too thin.
Have a plan
Many credit Benjamin Franklin with saying “If you fail to plan, plan to fail” and I don’t think one of the American founding fathers could have been any more accurate. Having a plan removes guesswork and removes a large need for willpower because you’re simply following pre-described, habitual motions.
I’ve mentioned in previous articles that I see our Duchess as a planner. I imagine she has a descriptive goal for any New Year’s resolutions with a workable and attainable plan in place in order to be successful.
Remember your “Crown”
Remember that who you were and who you want to be, or who you need to be, will often be at odds. You may need to summon a sense of duty in order to resolve these struggles.
Doing so will help you realize what is important and guide you to making decisions that serve your best self. I’m sure Duchess Kate is faced with decisions every day to call for her to take a step back and evaluate. Like the Duchess, take a moment to measure up the situation so that you can truly act in the best interest of your best Self.
If you’ve not yet watched the Crown, check out the preview for the show, below.