Resolutions Are So Last Year.
5 Reasons Why I'm Not Making 2021 Resolutions
“New Year, New Me.” I don’t know how many times I have said that phrase. I have probably uttered it every year for about half of the time I’ve been alive, and although each year I grow and change, it has had nothing to do with the magic of this ‘new year’ humanity has derived, and it has all to do with the steps I take every other day of the year to improve and grow. That shit is tough! Much tougher than pretending that you aren’t going to be the same damn person you were the day before with no real work put in. But if resolutions work for you, far be it from me to discourage you from making them, but here are a few reasons why I choose to not participate this year.
1. Time is a construct.
Time is an idea that humans created to help our monkey brains wrap our minds around eternity. The minutes, hours, years, and decades that we are all afraid of running out of are a ticking clock we have created for ourselves. Sure, we managed to base it off of the changing of the seasons and cosmic rotations, but at the root of it, a day is just another day, no matter what title we give it. January 1st is an illusion that our minds have come up with to herald in a new imaginary era of nothing. Think about it. All humanity doesn’t even follow the same New Year. A promise to change made to yourself just because a random day elicits society to believe a new age is on the horizon is hardly a reason to lie to myself if I am not truly ready to make the change in the first place, no matter the societal pressure to do so.
2. I am too stubborn.
I tried to make this as universally identifiable as possible, and I am certain I am not the only stubborn person in this world. If I am certain of one thing, it’s that. I know that if I am not ready to do something, if I have not made the conscious decision to make a change, or at least come to the realization that I must make that change, the start of a new imaginary calendar year isn’t going to magically make me so. All the “I’m losing x amount of weight this year” resolutions I have made in the past bore no fruit, because I was not ready to make the necessary steps to do so. That’s not to say I haven’t lost my fair share of weight here and there, but it had nothing to do with it being a new year or a new me. It was because I decided I was ready, and only you can truly decide that, not a made-up holiday.
3. We are in a pandemic.
Whether or not I wanted to resolve to hit the gym, try new things, build my savings, or volunteer more, the state of the world really doesn’t allow for planning right now. This year, more than others in recent history, really made us throw out the book. I choose for the first time in a long time, to not plan. To not resolve. To not set myself up for disappointment. It’s not to say I don’t have personal goals for myself, I am a Capricorn after all, but I still have unfinished business from 2020. Instead of bogging myself down with new, ritualistic, generic resolutions, I choose to focus on the momentum I have gained thus far and finish what I started before putting something new on my plate. Just because the year ended, doesn’t mean we get a clean slate. That’s just not realistic.
4. They do not serve me.
Maybe at one time they did. Maybe one day they will again. This time of pandemic and social distance has really allowed me to reset and take a good look at the things I like about myself and the things I don’t. It allowed me the time and reserved energy to take a good look at myself, my trauma, and my needs, maybe for the first time ever. Although, I can’t recall all the resolutions I have made to myself, none are a good or happy memory. If anything, they’re somewhat negative because I never accomplished them. Self-inflicted negativity, intentional or not does not serve me, and I refuse to put myself in that position again.
5. I don’t want to.
Granted, this can probably be seen as a cop out, and to be honest, it began as one. When I first thought to make this post, I didn’t have five. In all transparency, I was trying to play by the rules of the algorithm; I hear people like lists. Regardless of intent, whether or not this is a good one, my pure lack of desire is a reason. Sure, making resolutions isn’t mandatory. It isn’t the law, but I think most people do it because they think they have to. I also think people have an issue with the reason “I don’t want to.” Many demand more of an explanation, which in all honesty, they aren’t entitled to. “I don’t want to” is sufficient, and more people must accept that.
There is one good thing resolutions cause us to do. They cause us to reevaluate where and who we are. This doesn’t hold true for everyone, but for some I know it is so. You look back on your life. At another year gone. Another tick of Father Time’s clock tocked. Another year closer to the inevitable death we are so frightened of, and you wonder “What have I done with my life?” “What can I do to not waste another year?” I think a look back at ourselves, where we want to go, what we want to accomplish, who we want to be are immensely important. Me, I do that on a daily basis. It’s a gift and a curse, and that’s why the idea of a New Year’s resolution just isn’t me.
A/N: If resolutions are your thing, and you read this anyway, thank you. It means a lot. I am not sure how realistic or cynical this whole post has made me sound, but I assure you, my outlook for this year is positive. I have another 365 days to grow, change, and learn, and I am ready for it. I just choose to do it my own way.