New Year's Resolution: Stay True to Yourself
Photo by Austin Schmid
At every year's end, tradition forces us to rethink our life's journey. We come up with meaningless "New Year's Resolutions" that we drop within a month. Society shouts at us, "New Year, New You!" and we often choose to go on with the year-end trends.
Or do we? What if we resolved to be ourselves into the New Year? What if we continued working hard on the people we already are?
Even if it has been a hard year - and for many of us, 2018 was controversial and uncomfortable - it's good to continue on the path you are on. To become "new" would be to erase all the exciting things about your personality and your past. All the lessons you have learned over the past year should be cherished as you wander into 2019. The hard moments are the important ones; they are the moments that shape who we are, what we stand for and how healthy we will become.
This mindset of becoming new also brings feelings of guilt and inadequacy to the lives of many women. Instead of focusing on all our successes, we are stuck on the failures, mistakes and flaws that we want to change about ourselves. Take a look at the most common New Year's resolutions: save money, lose weight, quit smoking, buy a house and find love. All of these goals speak to the things we criticise most about ourselves.
So you're only making $2000 a month? That income does not express the hard work and experience you have gained in your career. Your doctor told you your BMI is a bit high? That is not a measurement of your kindness or character. Do you have a small one-bedroom apartment? You should be grateful you have a place to sleep - a place to call home. Stop measuring your self-worth by these materialistic standards. It is commendable that you want to improve, and you should, but in your own time.
If you make all of those goals and it doesn't happen the way you planned it, you may end up feeling worthless and weak. You may also compare your goals and progress to all the other "new" people on Facebook come January. It is bad for your mental health to put this kind of pressure on yourself. Everyone's journey is different. Remember to allow yourself to be human. Find ways to be more comfortable being exactly who you are.
Many of our problems are outside of our control. To be truly happy, it's important to stay in your lane. As a human being, your path is not very wide, and there is a lot of traffic. Situations are being thrown at you from all directions. Instead of fighting an impossible fight, learn to accept what is out of your hands. Learn from your experiences. Recognise toxic habits in yourself and the people in your life so you can avoid repeating the same mistakes.
The journey you're on is a work in progress. You have been building your place in this world since the day you were born. Why would you want to be anyone else but you? Don't discredit how far you have made it.
Look forward to all the pain and joy that the new year will undoubtedly bring.
Let's go into 2019 with a different attitude. Instead of "New Year, New You," let's opt for "New Year, Same Beautiful You."