Let’s talk about this. Resolutions. Goals. Intentions. Your yearly “buzzword”. Whatever you want to call it– January is the time when we take stock of the previous year, look at what worked and what didn’t, and in turn visualise the months ahead. With images of the new, improved us dancing in our heads, we make lists that make us feel like we’re halfway there already, just by putting it on paper. Whatever “it” is – healthier, more accomplished in some way, a better friend, a more patient partner – in the early days of a new year, it all seems delightfully within reach.
Unfortunately, most of us know too well the feeling of having “failed” to meet these somewhat random goals. Thousands of lapsed gym memberships the world over can attest to the fact that the best of intentions don’t always play out in reality. Perhaps this is because our resolutions are too drastic to be realistic, or too numerous to handle, or simply that turning over a new leaf on January 1 (instead of, you know, when it makes sense for you), is a completely arbitrary construct.
So, I want to know: are you a resolution-maker? I confess that, in spite of my clear skepticism, I am. I love making a list of planned achievements, and have found that it does help me, if not achieve things outright, at least focus on the areas of my life that I feel need attention at the time. For instance, last year I wanted to focus on travel, having fun and making connections after a tricky period in my life came to an end. I kept this intention at the back of my mind, and I ended up having the most fun, friend-filled, holiday-packed year of my life.
This year, I’ve made two major goals: one is to do with my career, and one is financial. Through a combination of hard work and (hopefully) good luck, I’m confident that both can be achieved by the year’s end. Of course, I’ve also pledged to do all the boring stuff – go to yoga more often, start running regularly again, finally take a damn French class so I can do more than order dinner when I go to Paris – but I plan to keep my eyes on the big prizes.
Before I sign off, I thought I’d leave you with selection of other people’s thoughts on the subject. Here’s a round up of some of my favourite bloggers’ posts on New Year’s resolutions; they differ wildly from each other, but all are worth a browse:
- Emily from Cupcakes and Cashmere has goals that are all about experimenting, pushing boundaries and having fun.
- Manrepeller‘s thoughts on resolutions are, typically, both hilarious and poignant.
- Holly at Decor8 is simply resolving to “ditch the list” and be happy. It’s an inspiring read, particularly for long-term bloggers.
- The team at Camille Styles shared their resolutions together, which range from the familiar (get fit) to the fun (take more road trips).
- Jess Lively is always a good source of inspiration for organized types, and I love her gentle take on living intentionally.
- As always, Garance Doré is refreshingly real.
So, what are your resolutions this year? Or are you doing away with the whole idea? I’d love to know!