For the first time in a few months, I’ve been putting off writing this blog post. Why? Well, first of all, this is technically supposed to be THAT post of the new year where I share my hopes, dreams, and aspirations for the year ahead. I say that mockingly because I’m not sure if I believe in the whole new year, new goals and resolutions trope anymore.
I can hear all your gasps, but wait, don’t leave! Hear me out.
I’ve begun to have problems with “starting over” in the new year because when it gets closer to that time I start putting off exercise or changing to vegetarian with the excuse of: “I’ll start in the new year.” This phrase isn’t unique to me, I hear family members, friends, and people I follow use it as an excuse all the time. Clearly, I’m guilty of it as I stated, but I don’t want to be guilty of it any longer.
That’s why this past December I took initiative for just that. In November, I only posted four blog posts compared to my usual eight and I would go days without posting an Instagram or engaging with you all. School was taking over my life at the time, but I definitely wasn’t managing my time that month either. When December rolled around, I decided it was time to change that. I drew out a huge calendar on poster board, planned out eight blog posts extensively (when I was going to shoot for them, write them, edit them, etc.), set reminders like check email daily, and made a checklist of all my to-dos for the month. Then, I realized I needed to reduce my biggest distraction when it came to focusing, so I told myself I would not get on my phone for at least two consecutive hours every school day in December.
I would be lying if I said I hadn’t said to myself multiple times throughout this process, “I’ll start this in the new year.” But, I put my bulls**t detector on and called out myself. If I had waited until the new year, my December would’ve turned out like my November with low stats, barely any engagement, and high procrastination. Thus, I began my no-procrastination-better-time-management month in December. Did it work? It worked so well, that I, myself, was shocked. My blog posts were getting more views than they had in a long time, my Instagram growth and engagement was (and is) sky-rocketing, and I did, in fact, stay off of my phone for two consecutive hours almost every school day.
Also, starting to exercise more was on my list to be a new year’s resolution. I decided not to wait, once again. In December, I went on runs 2-3 times a week and did an ab workout after each. Although, this did stop while out of town for the holidays, I was proud of myself for implementing something I had not been able to for the latter half of 2018 and was only planning on starting once in the new year.
The point I’m trying to make here is that yes, starting new habits and setting new goals in the new year is not a terrible practice; it has major flaws. It puts us in a box, making us feel like we have to wait for the new year to begin a lifestyle change and/or leads us away from starting over with a clean slate later in the year.
So, news flash: The New Year is not the only time of the year when you can start new habits and set new goals.
Many of you probably already knew this, but were you implementing this?
Keep yourself accountable. Are you running away from a lifestyle change and using false excuses to do so? Do you really need to wait until the new year to start this? Is your goal able to be reached now? If so, why are you putting it off?
Putting your goals, resolutions, and changes into action is completely and totally up to you. Time has no way of stopping you from reaching them and taking steps to do so. Go ahead and set goals for this year, but make monthly and even weekly ones as well. If you think of something new you want to do in the middle of May, at the end of August, or even the beginning of December; go for it.
2019 is yours for the taking and it is up to you to decide what to do with it and when.