We’ve all seen it when January 1st comes around – everyone and their cat (sometimes literally, why do people make their pets accounts?!) posting a ‘New Year, New Me’ status on Facebook or uploading an inspirational picture to Instagram listing everything they want to change about themselves or their lives. Then what follows that? The negative Nancy’s of the world announcing how they hate all of the new year posts and how resolutions always fail, how they are nonsensical and to be discouraged.
The latter makes me mad. I want to go on record and say I am officially a New Years Resolution maker, and sometimes breaker. I enjoy the beginning of a new year and the feeling that you can start a fresh and have a ‘clean slate’.
I’m not stupid – we all know in reality it’s any other day and that the date means nothing but subconsciously, it’s a chance to change everything. The part which makes me mad at people for bad mouthing this and announcing how silly we all are is that AT LEAST WE’RE TRYING. The typical resolution is about saving money, eating better, sleeping more – something positive. How can that be a bad thing? If you hate it so much, stay off social media for a couple of days and then compliment someone on how much weight they’ve lost a couple of weeks later or how glowing someone is after upping their water intake. Don’t discourage or make people feel a fool for trying to better themselves or ridicule people for wanting to live a healthier and more fulfilling life. Even if these resolutions ‘don’t last’ as naysayers will tell you they won’t, at least for that month or two we did our body some good/improved our health/bank balance etc. Surely that’s better than 12 months of bad habits?
I genuinely think that if New Years Resolutions were more encouraged, they would be more successful and maybe even become habits for life. How many times have you told someone about a plan for the ‘new year, new you’ for them only to laugh and tell you it won’t last? Maybe, if instead they said ‘Wow, good for you I hope you succeed – How can I help?’ then we might stand a chance. In a world of rising obesity, diseases, fast food and faster lives, trying to be a healthier better person could never a bad thing.
I fully understand this is more of a rant than a blog post, but it comes from a personal place. Before Christmas, I made the decision to try veganism. Cue mass hysteria about how awful it would be for my other half, how it ‘doesn’t help because the animals are already dead’ and how I will ‘turn into a rabbit’. I had a good couple of months and wavered a bit around Christmas but ultimately, really enjoyed the changes I started to feel. So it is my resolution to turn fully vegan and I am enjoying it so much. Cue more comments about how I’m only doing it as it’s fashionable or people giving me a police style investigation on my motives behind the decision. This reaction honestly shocked me a bit and has almost made me embarrassed to ask for almond milk in a coffee shop, whispering to people that no I don’t want a chocolate thank you as actually I don’t eat dairy products anymore. It makes me sad that I have made a choice which is better for my body, morally sound and preserving the planet – yet people think I’m mad? I was vegetarian for 10 years at age 10-20 and not once did I face the reaction that my new-found veganism has had, I think it’s because it’s still relatively ‘the unknown’.
This isn’t me promoting eating this way to you all but to say that maybe a bit more compassion is needed and a lot more support. If someone wants to make a positive change in their life – don’t question it or discourage them, support it. How many videos have you seen in the past couple of weeks ridiculing larger people in the gym or moaning about how many people are in there in January. GOOD! That’s all those extra people making a healthy change in their lives.
No-one has to make a New Years Resolution, you might already be perfectly happy with your life. I understand not everyone gets the same January 1st buzz of a clean slate and that’s fine, but really this applies to every month of the year. If somebody gets a juicer for their birthday in July, buy them some fruit. If somebody signs up to a marathon, train with them. We should never squash some bodies goals before they’ve had a chance to get anywhere near achieving it.
I hope this has been food for thought; We are all guilty of rolling our eyes come the resolutions which accompany the chimes of Midnight January 1st, but how about we embrace it instead and help people reach their goals? Below I’ve inserted some of mine over the years – See, we don’t all always quit! #OnwardsAndUpwards
Just Hollie xox