I know what you’re thinking – please, not another ‘new year resolutions blog’. I get that feeling. Whilst I’m super nosy and like reading about other people’s goals for a brand new year, they can get a bit samey. So I’m trying to break the mould a bit. Go me.
In my teens, I made huge, massive, all-encompassing new year resolutions. “This year, I will lose weight”. “This year, I will get a new job”. “This year, I will exercise more”. You get the gist. The problem: I rarely stuck to these so-called new year resolutions and had normally buckled back to my ways by January 30th. The outcome: I felt like a failure.
That’s why this year, I’m not setting myself new year resolutions as such but rather, am setting myself the challenge to improve certain parts of me, my lifestyle and my personality.
I hate the phrase “new year, new me”. What was so bad about the “old” me? I don’t want to be a brand new person – I just want to be a slightly more improved version of me…
PATIENCE IS A VIRTUE
My first self-improvement goal for 2016 is simple; be more patient. I never realised just how impatient I can be until recently when I was in a queue for a changing room whilst hitting the January sales. There were about five people ahead of me and I had a few bits I wanted to try on and the fact that I was standing around in a queue was starting to frustrate me. I thought to myself: “Sod it; I’m not sure I can be bothered to wait.” Then I realised something. What exactly was I in such a rush for? I didn’t have anywhere to be particularly, I was not against the clock so in reality, had all the time in the world to wait 10 minutes in a queue. It was at that moment that I pledged to be more patient in life. Too often we moan, complain, get angry or just plain give up because of our impatience. Not this year. Unless I’m genuinely in a rush and don’t have the time, I will take more time and not fret.
BACK TO BASICS HEALTH
I’ve tried pretty much every fad diet out there – carb-free, 5:2, sugar-free. I’ve also signed up to lots of exercise programmes and parted ways with money that promised to earn me a better body in a few weeks by working out at home in front of my laptop. But guess what: none of the above worked for me. I’ll be the first to admit that over the past year, my health has slipped somewhat and I’m not in the best of shape at the moment. But there’s no time like the present to improve that. I know what foods are good for my body and what are not so good and I know it’s as easy as eating less and moving more. So I’m going back to basics with my health this year. I’m not going to cut anything drastic out of my diet and nor am I going to commit to an exercise regime that I’m just not cut out for. I’m going to improve my perception of health and improve my lifestyle gradually and healthily so that eventually, I have a slightly more improved me looking back in the mirror; if not physically then at least mentally.
UNLEASH THE BOOKWORM
I’ve always loved to learn and reading is one of my key sources of happiness. I studied English at university and ever since I can remember, having a book on the go has been the norm. My favourite type of book is a good old-fashioned crime thriller; Girl On A Train was one of my favourite reads from last year and I’m always on the hunt for a new novel that has plenty of twists and turns. But this year, I want to improve on my worldliness; by this, I mean my knowledge and understanding of the world we live in and where we come from and I figured the best place to start would be to read in a more diverse fashion. My first stop is Yeonmi Park’s ‘In Order To Live’; a harrowing first-hand account of North Korean repression and Park’s escape. It’s not my normal read but Hannah Witton spoke about it on her Youtube channel and I felt compelled to buy it. Unleash the (slightly more educational) bookworm.
OK, so I know at the beginning of this blog I said I DIDN’T want to set myself any huge goals or encompassing resolutions. And yes; ‘be happier’ does sound like a pretty massive improvement to set myself. But happiness is something that I’ve been really interested in recently. From the science behind what causes a person to feel happy to what it is exactly that makes me happy every day. It’s a personal journey that I’m consistently on and slowly, I’m starting to find more and more things that make me happy that don’t centre around other people. Because that’s what I mean here: I want to be happier but not reliant upon loved ones for that happiness. It’s obvious that my boyfriend, my family and my friends bring me happiness. They make me smile every day. Yet, I want to be happy in my own company and with my own thoughts and beliefs. I want to find more “things” that I can do to make me happy on my own. Whether that’s focusing harder on this blog or discovering a new-found love for yoga or just taking 20 minutes in an evening to fill out my adult colouring book that I got for Christmas. I want to be happier as a person and find the little things, the avenues and the mindset needed for a truly happy me.
Wish me luck…!