New Year, New Me: Why We're Anti-Resolutions
New Year, New Me?
For many of us, the New Year ushers in a spirit of positivity, fresh starts, new goals, and hope for a better future.
It can also be anxiety-inducing, as we rush to become seemingly entirely new people within 30 days—a process that can set us up for disappointment if we don’t somehow magically become whoever, or whatever, we thought January 1st might manifest.
This is especially the case for those whose motivations for change are fitness, health, or otherwise wellness-oriented. These particular types of resolutions can breed unhealthy obsessiveness. Humans tend to be eager or overly excited about becoming new versions of ourselves. And why wouldn’t we be if it meant we could better our experience on Earth?
“I’m going to get in the best shape of my life this year” is a sentence in many people's resolutions-themed journal entries. It always made its way into my annual resolutions for years, despite me never truly feeling or believing I achieved it by the end of the year.
In hindsight, it saddens me to reflect on how hard I was on myself and the impact such an extreme goal had on my body and emotional and mental health. I’d decided, at some point, that I wouldn’t be truly happy or fulfilled until I had the body of the Victoria's Secret models I compared myself to. Boy, am I thankful we evolve and grow.
Consistent self-improvement and goal-setting are habits worth celebrating. It only becomes counterproductive when soiled with comparison and chronic self-inflicted pressure. What if we tried a more balanced approach and took the sustainable route to a healthier lifestyle?
For years, I was a self-proclaimed Quick Fix Queen; if there was a new magic pill, weight loss procedure, or diet, I tried it. Ultimately, these methods only left me feeling depleted and mentally, emotionally, and physically exhausted. Everything I tried felt impractical and draining until I had one very important realisation: there are no quick fixes.
If my experience can teach us anything, it’s that we should all do our best to go into 2024 with a balanced mindset. The goal is to nurture ourselves into forming and maintaining healthier habits that we can sustain. Get to that really hard workout, or don’t! Eat 80% clean and 20% not! Take a walk instead of a run, and enjoy your surroundings!
We only get one body, so let’s treat it with the grace it deserves. This includes getting adequate rest and nourishment and remembering that there are no quick fixes to a long, healthy, happy, and sustainable life.
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