Let's make next year, THE year

Student blogger Orli West looks ahead to 2018, resolving to make resolutions that count

December 28, 2017 15:09

What you are about to witness is the total stupidity that is me making New Year’s resolutions; this year, I am going to cut out all sugar and fast foods. This year, I am going to wake up at 7 am every morning and go for a run. This year, I am going to get every single essay done two weeks before the due date. Okay… realistically I am not going to do any one of those things. So why is it that at midnight on December 31 every year, we promise ourselves that this year will be THE year? The year when we do the things we’ve been meaning to do forever, like join a gym or finally clear the boxes that have been sitting in the loft for six years.

According to Google, New Year’s resolutions came from the Roman God, Janus, who was said to have two faces; one looking forward and one looking back. In 153 B.C, the Romans declared January 1 as the start of the year, and began to make promises to Janus about being better the next year, in return for being blessed in the year ahead. Anyone else getting flashbacks to Rosh Hashanah?!

Nowadays, people make resolutions on things that they think will change their life, but don’t really think about how to get there. As anyone who has ever made a drastic change to their life will tell you, doing it all at once is not the way to go! As tempting as I’m sure it is to get up at 7am to run every day, if you are someone who has never gone on a run before and hasn’t seen 7am since that one time you tried to go the library super early to get tons of work done (and failed, and was back in bed by 9am), it just won’t work. 

When I told my sister, Millie, what this year’s resolutions were she looked up at me, puzzled, and said “aren’t New Year’s resolutions about being a better person?” Now, whilst I’m sure my parents would be overjoyed to have me out of bed before midday every day, I don’t think that quite hits the mark! As was indicated by my sister, I think we’ve begun to miss the point of New Year’s resolutions. Maybe, instead of attempting to make monumental, but also meaningless, changes to our lives, it’s time to start implementing little alterations that impact the lives of those around us.

So here are five things to really aim to do next year:

  • Smile more
  • Turn off your phone and connect with those you love
  • Push yourself out of your comfort zone and try something new every day
  • Visit an elderly relative or neighbour
  • If you’re thinking of doing a nice thing, stop thinking about it. Just do it!

Let’s make next year our year to make a difference; let’s make next year THE year.

Orli West is in her second year at Birmingham University where she is studying Education.

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December 28, 2017 15:09

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