It’s that time of year when everyone is setting goals, thinking about making changes and making resolutions that probably won’t stick. Come new years eve and everyone acts like they’re about to shed the year like an old, warn coat that needs throwing away. They speak as though January 1st will bring changes, they’ll become new people and everything will change. Except what really does change apart from the date on one’s calendar? And the only thing we’re throwing away is the old one that hangs on our walls. You see the words everywhere, new year, new me. Whatever that means. As though suddenly they’ll wake up and be a completely different person, a whole other world where their whole lives will be different to the year they’ve just had. Only to wake up with the same body they went to sleep in, same mind as before, in the same world the night ended with, nothing changed from what they saw the night before. Same old problems, same old routine. The reality is the new year hasn’t cleaned any slate, or brought in anything new. These words people say when it comes to the new year, make no sense to me. New years day just feels like another day, like any other day.
Then comes the resolution making, everyone is thinking up ideas and making all these plans. Making promises of changing and bettering themselves, with unrealistic goals. Some people going so far as doing these weird January challenges, where they give up something they like or an item of food for the month of January. They stop eating sugar, bread, junk, whatever for one month, and then? What then and after the month is over? They’ll just go back to eating all the junk they’d given up for a month, and for what? What exactly does this achieve if you’re only going to go back to the old habits? It all defeats the objective really. Me personally I don’t see the point in any of the above.
There’s no point pretending everything is all new and changed, and making promises to ourselves and setting goals that we know we can’t keep. I generally don’t like setting goals any time of the year, or any time in my life. I’ve never really liked it, so I don’t bother with new years resolutions either. I often find that goals and resolutions set you up to fail and cause more mental strain and stress than good. I guess for the majority, if you set small doable, realistic goals you can achieve something and will succeed better. I’m not saying setting goals doesn’t work for everyone, for some people they work quite well for them. And it helps them focus on something and motivates them in making better life choices and improving their health. It might be the only think that will push them to improving their life, to become healthier.
But for me I just don’t get on with setting goals, and not even small goal setting feels any good. I find too pressured into needing to succeed and get somewhere, when setting goals. Which leads to anxiety, because I feel that if I fail there would be consequences of sorts, or the failure puts me down and shatters my confidences even more than before I started. You feel this pressure in achieving goals, because they feel formal in a way. Because goals are usually set in a professional capacity, from settings like work or school education. The achievements that need to be gained from them, have this compulsory feel. That if you can’t keep those goals and keep them up, then you fail in a big way, which leaves one feeling like a failure. That if you don’t achieve your goals, then you won’t succeed in life. Because that’s the image which life coaches and health fad gurus tell you. That you can’t get anywhere in life without setting goals, and that you’ll achieve nothing otherwise. Which annoys me immensely. You don’t need to set goals to succeed or get somewhere in life.
I feel that with goals you can’t just give up and leave it, because it feels compulsory, once you set them you have to complete it. I’m one of these people who hate failing at anything. I’m afraid of failure, but that’s probably because failing has had consequences for me, and got me into a lot of trouble. So now I have deep routed anxiety of making mistakes, getting things wrong, or not achieving things, not doing well at things, and not being able to do something.
I know that goals are there to help people achieve things, and some people believe that it’s important to push yourself if you want to get anywhere and that goals are the way forward. some people will ask how would you achieve anything if you don’t set goals? To be honest, I feel that you can still achieve things without having to set goals or make resolutions. For me I”d rather take things one step at a time and take achievements that come with doing certain tasks, activities without having to set a goal to do those things. Sometimes you achieve things by chance anyway without the added pressure. I’d just prefer not to have all that stress of targets setting, and time limits etc.
I just think especially with resolutions, that if you know you won’t be able to keep up with the tasks and won’t be able to keep it, there’s no point doing it or planning them. They’re just a waste of time and a big fail!!