New Year, New Beginnings?
I’ve been journaling for over ten years. It’s great for several reasons – I get to expel all the narcissistic rubbish that floods my brain, without having to offload too much of it onto any unsuspecting close friends or family. I’ve also discovered a way to provide my future self with as much embarrassment as I can endure, simply by perusing the pages of the journal I kept at the age of 15. In my opinion, people who look back on their adolescence with a sense of nostalgia are clearly stupid, deluded or insane.
I, like millions of people worldwide, used to keep the same tradition. New year. New diary. New set of resolutions. Flipping through the pages of my journal of the last few years, I get a sense of repetition. Lose ten kilos… Save ‘x’ amount of money… Learn a new language… Write more. Eat less. The years roll on and the resolutions with it. My Spartan training regime is never executed, my bank account has about 90 bucks in it and I’m nowhere near being fluent in French. C’est la vie, n’est pas?
A new year is generally regarded as an opportunity for new beginnings, hence the implementation of resolutions. It’s a ridiculous tradition for several reasons.
No one starts a new year feeling refreshed and ready to tackle the world. I think the general consensus is to spend the day in bed, punctuated by occasional trips to the bathroom to vomit up the regret from the night before. Or work, if you’re lucky enough to work in the media, retail or hospitality industries. There isn’t some sort of magical metamorphosis that happens overnight. You’re still the same person, with all the same flaws.
On top of that, you’re generally emotionally and physically exhausted. The holiday season is taxing and often you need a holiday, to recover from your holiday.
This year, I stood on a hill in the bitter cold at midnight, watching the fireworks shoot off from the London Eye and several thoughts came to me.
I realised I no longer had any sort of sensation in my toes.
I felt a sense relief that I hadn’t wasted ten pounds on getting down near the Thames to watch the fireworks up close, because Sydney’s are sooooooo much better.
Then, I wondered:
“What am I going to achieve this year?”
Maybe it was from a sense of lethargy, or pure exhaustion. Or for once, perhaps I was thinking sensibly.
“Just wing it,” my internal voice suggested in reply.
That is my plan. No lists = no disappointment. I’ll make goals, as they occur to me. I’m not going to force it.
I’m just going to go with the flow.
…And that’s my New Years Resolution.