How do you approach the dawning of a new year? Do you have traditions that you go through? Do you review your last year and set new goals?
Does anyone even set New Year's resolutions anymore?
There's nothing wrong with resolutions, I just haven't caught onto the value of only making them once a year. Yes, there's a nice fresh feeling to turning over a blank page but don't we do that every day anyways?
And why can't we make plans throughout the year and just work on them naturally? Why force it because there's a different digit in the date?
Do Your Goals Come from Inside or Outside?
Resolutions have almost become a bit of a failure-trigger for some people - they know they are supposed to be "setting goals" and improving themselves so they say, "I'll make a New Year's resolution to fix that!"
The trouble this creates is that it may not come from you. There could be friends or society or articles that are telling you the types of things you need to improve in your life. But do you ask yourself what you really want to achieve for you?
So you declare your resolution and work hard at it. At first. Then it just loses you. And then you "fail" and then you feel shitty. If you set a goal based on external factors, there's less chance that you'll push through it happily. And even if you do get through it, you may feel annoyed or drained or just plain empty. How is this tradition helping anyone?
Ultimately, I think it's important to feel like you are making progress. Whatever you're doing. Cooking a meal, building a house, learning a skill, building friendships, staying connected to people - anything that's not moving forward can have a tendency to suck the life out of you.
However, you don't have to put markers and measures across everything to tell you you're making progress. You'll just know. If that once-inspiring project has been sitting in the back room for the last six months, you know you're over it. If you dread the idea of getting back on track with something, you know you're over it.
So why push through on things that are draining you? Just know when to quit. Quitting is as good as finishing sometimes. You'll at least clear the headspace spent on nagging yourself to achieve what you set out to do. You can accept that you're still learning about yourself and how you approach things. You're still finding out that your interests change throughout your life. And if last year's resolution doesn't make you feel good - scrap it.
Resolve to Feel Good
This year, I propose that you change your ideas about New Year's resolutions - change them so that if you decide to make them at all, you're making them for you and not for anything or anyone else.
How will that feel?