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Fresh start

New year, new way of making new year’s resolutions

Student Life | Student View

By Brittany Taylor

For many people, the start of a new year also signifies a fresh start.

It is a time to make lifestyle changes and kick bad habits to the curb. The initial idea of making a new year’s resolution can seem daunting at first.

Just another day

In fact, many people disagree with the concept of making a new year’s resolution since lifestyle changes can be made any day of the year.

This is a valid argument as a new year is not necessary in order to make changes to your life and Jan. 1 is essentially just another day of the week. With that in mind, there is still something rather refreshing about the idea of a new year.

I think, when enforced the correct way, new year’s resolutions can prove to be relatively beneficial in making positive lifestyle changes. It all depends upon how you view the resolution-making process.

Redefining “resolution”

When making a new year’s resolution, many people make the mistake of taking the concept too seriously and being too hard on themselves.

People tend to think that with the imaginary notion of a “fresh start” they must also remodel an entirely new, perfect version of themselves. This can be exemplified through the now familiar motto, “New year, new me!”

“Resolutions don’t have to be some binding pact or contract that we’ve made with our future selves.”

The issue with this way of thinking is that it is impossible for anyone to perfect every aspect of their lives, let alone perfect their lives overnight. This mindset is what causes people to quickly fail and eventually give up on their resolutions altogether.

The truth of the matter is that there will always be things we want to change or improve in our lives or within ourselves. The idea of perfection that we have constructed in our minds is unattainable and ultimately, non-existent.

Resolutions don’t have to be some binding pact or contract that we’ve made with our future selves. Instead, they should be viewed more so as a set of goals or suggestions implicated at any time throughout the year.

Learning to accept failure

The best way to go about making a new year’s resolution is by not taking it quite so literally.

“The key to successfully making lifestyle changes is by not giving up, even when we mess up.”

It shouldn’t be something we must abide by every single day of our lives. Things are going to happen in our lives that involve indulgent foods or a decrease in self-motivation. Giving up smoking for three weeks is better than not attempting to quit at all.

The key to successfully making lifestyle changes is by not giving up, even when we mess up. Our goals should also be less drastic and more attainable. Instead of eliminating sweets from your diet altogether, why not just strive to eat less unhealthy foods?

Don’t give up!

It is true the end of a year and the start of a new one present us with an opportunity for self-reflection and self-improvement. But, change does not have to be confined to 365 days of the year — it can be applied at any time throughout the year, over any time span.

At the end of the day, we are only human, and failure and error is inevitable. It is important that we don’t get discouraged by setbacks in life and take pride in even the smallest achievements, accomplishments or steps in the right direction.

There will always be room for self-improvement, but there is no wrong time to create a healthier, happier and better version of ourselves.

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