There is something special about this time of year. The idea that you can close the door on one year and have a fresh start. Previous new years resolutions have included the classic “Lose ten kilos”, “Go to the gym five days a week” and “Worry less”. Funnily enough Im still ten kilos too heavy (damn you pasta, I thought we were friends), the gym makes me positively bored out of my brain and I have probably worried about twenty different (and ridiculous) things before lunchtime today. So this year I’m throwing out those old and tired resolutions that plagued me with guilt and self-loathing. Instead I’m embracing a year full of colour, laughter and exploration but more importantly I am welcoming a year of choice. Im going to choose to be happy, choose to worry less everyday and choose to not ruminate about my shortcomings and faults.
1. Choosing to be happy, confident and free.
Lately I have been in a bit of a slump. Not just a little slump but a pretty big one. A Mariana trench sized rut.
You could say a number of things led to me being in this slump. Not having any money to go out and do the things I normally love doing. Getting comfortable in my relationship. Letting my anxiety fog up my normally perky brain. Gaining weight from previously aforementioned comfortable relationship. Having a crap diet. Having a crap job.
All these things have contributed to not feeling that great and happy and confident. But more importantly I chose to let these things affect me in a negative way. I was way too happy to dwell in the crapness of my situation. I felt that my job and my lack of social life gave me an excuse to be miserable. I would imagine that our trip (starting on January 15th!) would be the saving grace and would swoop down like spiderman from a skyscraper and lift me out of my rut.
Recently, I came to the revelation that even though this may suck at times I can choose to be happy, my situation doesn’t mean that I have to be miserable. I hate to sound cliche in my use of the word “society” but society does throw at us the message that if you don’t have the perfect body or a job that you love then you should be miserable until you do. Im telling you that this is wrong. I may be a bit plump around the edges and work in a grey cube, but these things are temporary. This situation will change. It may get worse, I may get plumper and work in a dungeon or it may get better. The one thing I can control is how I choose to feel. Not loving your body right now is okay! Not loving your job is okay! Choose to mentally move past those temporary things and choose to be happy and confident and free.
2. Be brave.
As I have gotten older I thought I might grow out of being a sensitive crybaby but alas I have not. Next year I want to be tougher, have a thicker skin, learn to confront and be a bit braver. I want to not dissolve into tears at the slightest mean thing or insult. I want to be able to confront someone who throws trash into the ocean. I want to be able to stand up for things I believe in and not concede at the slightest opposition or disapproval. I think the only way of actually achieving this is to be confident in myself (see above point!) and practice.
3. Accept colour.
This may seem like a weird one but along with my rut, I have found my life being stripped of colour. I wear blacks, greys and whites. I listen to sad and solemn indie- folk music (Im looking at you BonIver). I eat beige pasta and bread. So in 2014, I am choosing to embrace colour! Get ready for some sub-points (Pointception?).
– Eat fresh and colourful things. Im thinking big bowls of watermelon, pineapple and mango. Large plates of steamed greens and steaming bowls of red, yellow and green curry.
– Wear colourful clothes. Throw in some yellow sundresses, soft green T-shirts and colourful sarongs.
– Get away from the screens and be surrounded by the colours of nature. Green jungle, blue mountains, turquoise seas, multicolour fish.
4. Believe and know you can be the person you want to be.
Sounds cheesier than a plate of double cream brie but it becomes very easy to truly believe that you don’t have what it takes to become the person you want to be. I want to be a blogger, a writer and a creator but there are many days where I think that I can’t do it. Days where I think that everything that can be written has already been written, days where I think that I am too late to the game and have missed the boat, days where I think that I don’t possess the self-discipline to maintain a blog regularly. And right now I don’t have the self-discipline to maintain a blog. Nor do I have the discipline to say no to that fifth slice of pizza.
But I can change this.
Self-discipline is something that I can cultivate and grow. Its not something you either have or you don’t. So 2014 will be the year that I truly know that I have the capability to be the person who I want to be. I can be a writer. I can be secure in who I am. I can lose that pesky weight. I can take better photos. I can make more friends. I can hike the Annapurna circuit. I can learn to freedive. These are all things I can do! I can change what I don’t like about myself, its possible!
Hello 2014! May you be full of colour, confidence and bravery.
What are your new years resolutions for 2014? I would love to hear them! Do you struggle with anything above? What are you hoping to achieve? Please leave a comment or email firstname.lastname@example.org.