A popular sentiment I’ve seen reposted over the past few days:
For those of you who know me, you know I’m 90% pessimistic. I’m all about finding faults and preparing for the worst. Skepticism! Nihilism! Everything is nothing! Life is meaningless!
And if you don’t know me, to give you some perspective, one of the best, most “me” gifts I ever received was a plaque stating: “Exercise, Eat right, Die anyway.”
So yeah, f*** News Years right? A midnight kiss won’t start your year off right. A new date won’t give you another chance. A resolution won’t change who you are.
Unless, my fellow Grrls, you set the right kind of goals. Reachable goals. Realistic resolutions. I was never interested in resolutions until last New Years. The last half of 2015 was so stressful that I had to give in. My desperation drove me to be one of those people who make resolutions. One of those people who are optimistic (??!) about the year ahead of them.
Approximately a year ago I tweeted:
2016 YEAR OF HOT YOGA
2016 YEAR OF NOT SETTLING
2016 YEAR OF SELF LOVE & VALIDATION
(Fake it ‘til you make it! Tweet it ‘til you believe it!)
Hot yoga? For three months with my best dearest friend, a fellow worrywart and anxious freak, we took Bikram yoga classes and sweat out our problems (or at least forget about them for an hour and a half.) While balancing on one foot and listening to the soothing voices of strong, bendy women, we learned how to calm down.
Not settling? Last year my mom had brain surgery. When she got back on her feet, she refused to do anything she didn’t want to do. That’s fair. Her head had just been cut open and sewn back together. I remember sitting with her, complaining about the seeds in my clementine. She stopped me and said, “Christina. Life’s too short. Throw it away.” This floored me. Throw it away? How wasteful! But I did as I was told and the next one was perfect. In 2016, if I found myself complaining, I either figured out a way to fix my problem or stopped doing the thing altogether. Life’s too short for seedy clementines.
Self love & validation? I spent a lot of time alone in 2016. I wasn’t a complete hermit — I was sure to spend time with friends, but a good deal of my year was “me” time. I learned a lot about what I like and don’t like. I learned I don’t need validation from others to do what I want to do. I consider this goal reached for 2016, but it’s one of those that can always be added to the list. Someday I want to be Kardashian level self love.
My list of 2016 goals was short, and the goals themselves were broad, but I managed to achieve them. The overall theme focused on my mental and emotional health, setting the mood for a pretty indulgent year. The broad approach doesn’t work for everyone, but maybe to those of you who already don’t believe in resolutions, it could be a good place to start.
RESOLUTION TIPS FOR THE GROUCHY GRRLS:
1) Most resolution tips will tell you to make specific goals. I say make them as vague as you want. That way, at the end of the year, you’re more likely to be able to check it off your list. Not settling? What does that even mean? For me, it meant I threw away food I didn’t like, bought the thing I wanted (not the cheap equivalent), and spent time with people who truly made me happy.
2) Make sure you want it. There is no way I would have done months of sweaty back bending if I hadn’t been intrinsically motivated to touch my toes and forget my woes. You’re not going to achieve your goal if it means doing something you hate. For instance, had I made my resolution “make a three point shot” I would be miserable. A year of playing basketball as a 5’3” athletically challenged sports-hater? As much as I’d love to have that skill under my belt, the work to get there just isn’t worth it. No, thanks.
3) Think about your goals daily. Write them on the back of your hand, journal your progress, or even follow social media accounts that post about them (yogi Instas and Kourtney Kardashian’s post-f***-boy glow were profoundly inspirational).
Try it out! Maybe this way, you’ll become a believer. As for me, my 2017 goals are as follows:
- 1) Get published in print (This is broad. It could mean anything from self publication to school publication to local to national to international to intergalactic publication. Either way, my words will be in print by 2018 even if I have to do it myself.)
- 2) Finish seasons 1 & 2 of a TV show I’m currently writing with a friend. (Okay, not so broad, but I want this. So bad. I often daydream about our future Emmy.)
- 3) Get in better physical shape. (Broad! “Better” shape could mean anything. More muscle mass, faster mile time, will myself to grow an inch. Any outcome is possible with a vague goal!)
All in all, I wish the best for your coming year and I hope my unsolicited advice sets you on track for a successful 2017. Cheers to the New Year!