It’s that time of the year again. All those ‘New year, new me” posts are starting to make an appearance.
It’s easy to make fun of the people who post such things. It’s easy to feel superior in your certitude that people don’t change, neither on New Year’s nor on any other day of the year. But before you start ridiculing all those posts, take a few minutes to really think about what they represent: hope. The hope that things will be different this year; that they will be different this year. That they will have the courage to do what they wouldn’t dare to do the previous year. That they will be just a little bit wiser in their decisions. At the end of the day, is it so bad for someone to hope for a better year?
Of course, nobody changes overnight.
People can’t expect things to be different just because the date on the calendar has changed. But even though a day in itself cannot bring change, 365 days just might. Because the truth is that time changes things. So, resolving to change things for the better in the new year is not a sign of naivety; it’s a sign of determination.
While New Year’s day in itself does not hold a magical promise that you will achieve your goals, it is as good a time as any to re-evaluate your life.
Even though in reality it’s a day as any other, what the new year represents for many of us is the chance clean slate. Chances are you don’t pause to take stock of your life on any random day. You don’t stop your daily routine to think about what your goals are. But, whether we like to admit it or not, there’s something about New Year’s that makes us look back and reflect on how far we have come, and how far we want to go. So, if you think about it, New Year’s really is one of the best days for making resolutions.
The trouble with resolutions, however, is that we often make them in the heat of the moment.
All that new year pep talk makes us think that we can achieve anything. We set unrealistic goals for ourselves that are soon foregone when the reality of the new year hits in. But does that mean we should stop making resolutions all together?
The trick is to keep it simple.
You don’t have to promise yourself to become a millionaire by the end of the year, but you can resolve to find a better-paying job. You don’t have to declare that you will show your loved ones how much you care every single day, but you could promise yourself to try and incorporate small acts of caring in your everyday life. Resolutions don’t have to be big to be life-changing, it’s the small stuff, the small steps, that end up making all the difference.
Next time you find yourself laughing at someone’s conviction that the new year will be better, think about the fact that it could be.
You could accomplish some of your goals in the new year, you could make this year better than the one before it. There’s no guarantee, but there’s no harm in hoping. The only thing that is guaranteed is that you can’t accomplish your goals if you haven’t set any to begin with.