New Year's "Resolutions": The Little Goals
There are so many clichés surrounding New Year... "New Year, New Me" posts take over your social media feeds and people tell you that this year is "going to be my year". It's funny isn't it, because 11:59pm on 31st December 2017 is actually no different really than 12am on 1st January 2018, it's just got a different name. Nothing about you or your life physically changes, apart from maybe getting a new diary and a gym membership.
When I asked my friends about what words/phrases they associate with New Year, most of them said things like "a fresh start" and a "clean slate"... but another talked of feeling pressure - pressure to have their best year yet and be the best version of their own self. New Year's resolutions seems to have slipped from popularity over the past few years... maybe because the goals we tend to make at the beginning of a new year are often big, impersonal and fairly unachievable. You might vow to lose 3 stone, write a book in a couple of months, get up at 6am everyday... but, and maybe I'm just speaking from personal experience here (although I would guess that I'm actually not...), we don't say how we're going to achieve these goals. We don't break them down into small, attainable steps. We make resolutions without considering how they're going to fit into our lives and if they're going to be compatible with our personalities. Then, when these huge and badly planned resolutions inevitably go off track after a couple of weeks, you lose heart, get frustrated and forget about them altogether...
And why do we only think about making resolutions/goals/changes during the beginning of the year? A few days before the 1st of January I told my mom how excited I was for the new year... for a fresh start and for a push to begin some projects that I've kept on the back-burner for the whole of 2017. But why was I waiting until January to start these things? What's stopping us from making little, achievable goals that work towards our bigger aspirations every month? Every week? Every day?
So, as it stands, I've not really made any resolutions as such... or what we traditionally think of as being resolutions. I've had a good think about what I should do more/less of to make myself a happier and more fulfilled person. And they aren't necessarily big things. I didn't read half as much as I wanted to in 2017... so in 2018, I plan to read more. I also want to write (personal writing) more and as I mentioned, make a start on some projects that I've been putting off for a while now. I'll be content with just reading one page and writing a couple of lines a day... as long as I'm actively making time for these things in my life.
I can sometimes be a bit of an all or nothing person who wants to read the whole book if I'm going to bother to sit down and read, and who wants every paragraph I write to be a masterpiece. But I have learnt over the past year or so though it's the little things that make up the big things. And that every step, no matter how small and seemingly inconsequently, can propel you towards your goal and/or make you a happier individual.
I'd be interested to know if you've made any resolutions/goals for 2018 and your thoughts on New Year in general...
Happy New Year!