The problem with New Year resolutions (disclaimer – includes resolutions)

I’ve always had a love/hate relationship with new years resolutions. In general I think we should aim to be better humans and improve ourselves on any given day, not just on an arbitrary day that we’ve decided holds immense significance for self improvement. I also like to reflect on my life and how I live before (often drunkenly) proclaiming all these great changes I’m going to make about myself.

I thought about this more on the 1st of January this year, my Mum had recently said to me that she couldn’t wait for this year to be over. It’d be a bad year, a lot of unfortunate things happened to our family that were out of our control, and we just had to suck it up and deal. The dealing part was hard.

To be honest I couldn’t wait for 2014 to end either but I thought two things; I don’t feel any different than I felt yesterday, I still have no idea what I’m doing with regards to life/love/career/travel, so why would I know any better today; and bad things happen all the time (as do good things!), just because last year was hard doesn’t mean this year will be any easier.

This sounds like a negative approach to take, but I like to think of it as realistic. We can say that ‘this year will be the best year ever’ as much as we like, but things will always happen out of our control and it matters so much more how we deal with them rather than the fact they’ve actually happened. I think that’s where true positivity lies.

Anyway, true to form I’ve spent the last few days thinking about what I learned about myself last year, the ways in which I’ve grown, and I want to achieve in the next 12 months.

  • Blog more. Duh. I didn’t buy this domain for nothing.
  • Not be defined by the things that happen to me, and more so by the things I choose to do.
  • Learn Italian. I recently read Eat, Pray, Love and loved the idea of learning a language for no specific reason other than you like it. So here goes.
  • There are some career related ones that I won’t share here, but don’t worry I’ve got them carved on the walls of my mind and I’m not likely to forget them anytime soon.
  • Gym more. Duh. Maybe ‘cultivate an addiction to exercise’ explains this goal better.
  • Say yes more. I’ve often had the best time/night of my life when I said yes while on the brink of wanting to go home to bed/go home to be boring.
  • Pay off my debt. No one likes debt. Get rid of it.
  • I’d like to become more financially savvy. After 2-3 years of sticking my head in the sand on most things money related, I’d like to take it out and learn a bit more about what I’m doing with my money. I also noticed while paying of last month’s credit card how easy it actually is to save money. Just imagine if I’d been able to keep that money instead of whacking it on bills.
  • Read more books. Duh. I’m currently working through a stack I bought on my birthday last year, and have nearly finished Lena Dunham’s Not That Kind Of Girl.
  • Work hard, but don’t forget you’re you and not your job. A huge fault of mine is taking things (especially work) too seriously, throwing myself 100% into it and forgetting to have a life. It’s perfectly okay to arrive on time and leave on time if your workload is on track.

What do you think about New Year’s resolutions? Have you made any this year?

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