You Don’t Have to Wait For a New Year to Commit to Change
A new year is rolling around in a few days and that means millions of people around the world will commit to resolutions they’ll break…
A new year is rolling around in a few days and that means millions of people around the world will commit to resolutions they’ll break before they are even out of the first week of January. All jokes aside, millions of people around the world wait until New Year’s to commit to these resolutions.
You’ve got 365 days ahead of you when the clock strikes midnight, bringing you into the new year with new beginnings. Many people make their resolutions small, yet impactful: stop eating out, work out once a week, read more books, or take up a new hobby like yoga or collecting plants (my own personal hobby). Others make major, yet still achievable resolutions: buy a house, quit smoking, start up a business, or pay off student loans (Sallie Mae is, unfortunately, coming for me after I graduate in May). No matter what the resolution is, everyone is trying to better themselves and their lives.
The start of a new year allows people to feel as though it’s their time to start over. In a sense, the new year does give you a clean slate to start over. Society has created this traditional atmosphere after New Year’s Eve where the expectation is that people will be trying new things, improving themselves and that things will be different. However, why do people wait to commit to change? What’s so significant about January 1st than any other day in the year?
It’s a cliché saying but every day truly is a new day. People shouldn’t restrict themselves to committing to a resolution they set for themselves for a later time. That resolution can start today—or tomorrow. But it doesn’t have to wait until New Year’s Day.
As humans, we are extremely great at procrastinating and putting what we want to do on the back burner. But, if more people started committing to their aspirations as soon as they’ve set them, they would see the results quicker and be happier. A great example of this is the well-known resolution of wanting to lose more weight. Almost everyone has had this resolution written down at some point in their life. However, so many people wait to start their diet or workout routine. They put it off until next week, next month, next summer, next New Year’s! You’re putting off the inevitable. Imagine if you started your diet and working out today. You would reach your goal weight or become stronger sooner rather than later.
Another example is saving up money—you could start saving money today, even if it’s just a few dollars. I started a money challenge back in 2017 to save up 1,000 dollars by the start of 2018. I completed it and attempted to do the same thing for 2018. I failed, miserably, because I was so stuck in the idea of I had to save a certain amount and if I didn’t meet it then I couldn’t put any money away. When I started to fall off, I told myself I’d try next year. Why? I could have picked right back up, putting away any amount of money that I could.
It’s simple in theory, but hard in practice. Most people think it takes 21 days to create a new habit, but it actually takes 66 days (or more). That’s roughly over two months. People shouldn’t pressure themselves into unnecessary timelines of when they should complete—or start—something new. A year is 365 days, but your life lasts for however long it is meant to. No day is guaranteed, but every day is a day to start something new. Not just January 1st.
If you have a list of New Year’s resolutions, look at them and see what you could realistically start today, at this very moment. Goals, dreams and resolutions don’t have a start and expiration date on them.
By: Brianna Scott
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