Do you love the chance to make resolutions for the blank slate that is a fresh year ahead? Or do you secretly loathe this time of year and the pressure to detox and keep fit? Emily discusses a new approach to New Year’s Resolutions.
There’s seems to be a palpable relief that we’ve reached 2018. Somehow it sounds and feels better than the last few years we’ve had so hopefully the start of a new month in a new year is filling you with hope and inspiration for what may and could lie ahead.
Yet many of us feel the pressure of a new year and the emphasis on making resolutions which are wonderful in theory but perhaps harder in practice. Resolutions can indeed lead to magical things – people decide to train for a triathlon, and they do it. Or they vow to speak French by the end of the first quarter, and voila, they’re fluent. But what happens if you fail in your resolution? Is the rest of the year then a write off?!
From a marketing point of view, a new year is the ideal opportunity to sell products – especially if they can be in any way related to health, fitness, detoxing and the dreaded ‘clean eating’. Gyms are yelling out for you to sign up, juice companies are telling you that you’ll be glowing within days of converting to their cleanses and the poor pubs and bars who’ve been doing a roaring trade for the last month are begging you to come through their doors.
Taking everything with a pinch of salt is probably the best approach. Congratulate that person in your office who is going spinning six times a week but consider that they may well be exhausted by February. No, the best thing to do is think long term, get personal and create a habit.
It’s great to be enthusiastic at the start of the year about a resolution. If you really passionately want to do something, absolutely go for it. Yet also think about whether a big goal can be reached in smaller stages. Take your time to avoid burning out too early.
If you want to be healthier, start off with walking a little more each day, then progress to fitting some jogs in and maybe a weekend cycle ride. Build up to the big stuff rather than concentrating on mad month of gym work followed by a drop off the fitness treadmill.
If you want to learn something or take something up, book yourself into classes once or twice a week over the course of the next few months rather than cramming everything into January. You’ve got time, slow down and stick with it.
Equally, if you falter in the short term and skip a day or week of doing what you promised yourself, remember you’ve got the whole year. Get back on it and carry on.
Think about you. Drown out the voices of other people and media perceptions. Gym memberships, learning French and detoxing may be utterly irrelevant and of no interest or help to you.
What do you really want to achieve this year? Think big and small. You may want to simply change up an element of your daily commute, or listen more to friends when they talk, or try to visit a particular country.
One great way to figure out what you want is by spending some time alone. Go for a walk, sit with a notebook or simply go and have a coffee with no one else around. Think about the year you’ve just had and what you’d like to change from it. Ignore what you think others would say, or the type of resolutions that your friends and family are making. Think you.
With resolutions, you get the chance to create a habit. You can bring something positive to you into each day and it’s really worth finding a resolution that can contribute to your life this year and beyond.
Creating habits takes time but if you can stick with your new resolutions through January, the chances are you’ll be able to incorporate them into your daily life long term. Equally, if you’re looking to give up a habit – like quitting smoking or stopping gossiping, keep at it throughout the start of the year and enjoy the rest of the year’s successes.
Stuck for ideas? It’s still not too late to create your resolutions. How about these habits to take up or quit?
We’re hoping that all of our To Work Or Play readers have a healthy and happy start to 2018 and would love to hear what resolutions you’ve made and how they’re working out for you as we move into the first week of January. Drop us a line on hello@toworkorplay or speak to us on Twitter, Facebook or Instagram now!