As any year comes to a close, talk of “becoming a new me” is common. This year is no exception.
We look back at our year, or refuse to look back, and focus on how we can do better this time around. “2018 will be my year”.
Yet, it’s likely that when 2018 comes to a close, we will be in the same predicament as now: Unsatisfied with our year. New Year’s Resolutions unfulfilled. Hopes pinned on next year.
But what are we using to measure our “failed year”? It’s likely that—if we think our year has been a mess—that we are basing that off our expectations of what our year would look like. Is this what we want, year after year: to be disappointed and hard on ourselves? Why do we do it again and again?
The problem isn’t making plans. If we want to write a New Year’s Resolution, that’s great! If we’re excited for 2018, that’s also great! Dreaming and hoping is not the problem here.
It is when we become so transfixed with what we want our year to look like and don’t appreciate when things change that it becomes a problem.
When this happens, we can limit ourselves from seeing the good things that are happening which we didn’t plan. Yes, a lot of bad things can happen in a year. If we think about it, it will likely overwhelm us and make us unhappy. But a lot of good things can happen in a year too. I bet when we look back at our 2017 goals, a lot has changed since we wrote them. I bet we have changed a lot.
Sure, we might have barely completed any of our goals for last year, but think of it from a different perspective. Think about how much we’ve changed this year. Appreciate the things we achieved this year that we didn’t think possible before; the things we didn’t bother to write on our resolution because we never thought we could do it.
And if we want to write a New Year’s Resolution for 2018, good on us! It’s time to cut ourselves some slack. Let our resolutions be a hope, but not a law. Let ourselves enjoy flexibility and growth. Most of all, look back at our 2017 and celebrate the good things and how far we’ve come!
Sarah Tinning – Column: Living With a Positive Mindset
Sarah is a 19-year-old, living in Australia. She loves God, her family, singing, writing songs and novels, and playing guitar. She enjoys meeting up with friends, and just putting a smile on people’s faces; even better, making them laugh! She blogs about books, movies, music, and life at www.foreveraspiringwriter.wordpress.com