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Sam Dobson Writes: No Resolutions this Year

Monday, January 14, 2013

No Resolutions this Year

It's a new year. That means filling out a nice, crisp, new planner. That means making new resolutions with the good intention to keep them all year long. That means signing up for new gym memberships and stockpiling vitamins. That means grimacing when you see the new tax increase on your first pay check of the year. Most importantly, New Year's gives us hope.

Aside from temporary motivation to get healthy, every new year gives us what feels like a fresh start. In most cases, it isn't really. Come January 1st we still have the same job, are in the same relationship, and live in the same house. However, the 1st of the year gives us the feeling of a new beginning. This is a whole new year and we can attempt to mold it into whatever we want it to be. Whether it's full of travel, learning new things, being adventurous, getting our lives organized, saving money, or whatever it is that we are aspiring to, we are given hope that this will be the year we will achieve it.

If you are most people, as I am, chances are you won't keep your new years resolutions for longer than a few weeks. Resolutions fall by the way side while we are busy living our lives. Solution? It's simple, don't make resolutions. Instead, take note of what you want for your life (healthy living, make more money, etc.) and start making lifestyle changes necessary to make that life. More than anything I want to build a writing career. Instead of making a resolution to write more, I need to adjust my lifestyle so that writing is a priority.

So if they never seem to stick, why do we make resolutions every year? I think there is something about New Year's Eve that makes us go a little crazy. It's the realization that another year has passed us by, and sometimes too fast for us to stomach. We panic at the thought that the past year wasn't what we had hoped it would be. New Year's Eve ends up being a last ditch effort to make the past year great. You wake up on January 1st hung over, and maybe a bit depressed, determined to make this year better than the one you toasted to one too many times the night before.

That's the wonder of a new year. We are saddened by another year gone, but hopeful for the new beginning we are given. Energized by the promise of a clean slate, we make plans for immediate future. I choose to embrace this feeling of hope for the new year ahead. While I don't make New Years resolutions anymore, I do evaluate the past year and what I could do better with the fresh year ahead. I identify lifestyle changes that will help me achieve the life I want and I work toward making those changes a part of my routine. With each new year that comes, I will attempt to better myself and my life.

Happy New Year!



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