It is never too late to work on your New Year’s Resolutions. Yes, I know the name states firmly “New Year”, but time is relative and you can begin your “new year, new me” era whenever you need a reset. So, if you are reading this in July, don’t stop. And here’s why.
You may think this is a new social media trend, but making your New Year’s Resolutions is (almost!) as old as humanity. It all started around 4,000 years ago with the Babylonians, whose years corresponded to agricultural seasons. Akitu, a 12-day festival celebrating the regeneration of life, marked the start of the agrarian year. During Akitu, those who wanted to please the gods would swear to repay their debts and return borrowed items.
Those customs were adopted by the Romans, who paid tribute to their god of new beginnings, Janus (you got it, the inspiration behind the name of January!).
Civilizations evolved and customs changed, but the roots of these offerings remained. And that’s why today instead of making offerings to the gods, we set a list of goals that promise ourselves to achieve. Writing down that list of objectives and promising ourselves to make them true, is a different way to pay tribute and embrace what’s to come.
Welcome to your New Year!
First things first, do not feel pressured about it. According to a poll made by Forbes Health, “62% of Americans say they feel pressured to set a new year’s resolution. Women (64%) feel slightly more pressured to set a resolution than men (60%).”
Let me invite you not to fall into this percentage. You do not need to feel any pressure or be afraid of your New Year’s Resolutions. After all, they are yours, they can be changed because we are continuously growing, and if you do not achieve one of those goals of yours, you can keep on trying until you do, no matter how long it takes you. That’s life.
Second, you need to be honest with yourself and write down those resolutions gradually and realistically. Want to become a freelancer? It is possible. But ask yourself, what do I need? Which steps do I have to take first? Want to eat better? Great! What do you need to change in your food intake? Plan your meals. Can you take a lunch box to work instead of eating out? And so on. Be realistic and plan to succeed! It will take time, after all, including new habits or changing them, always does. But what’s life without a bit of a challenge?
Last but not least, try creating a mindful and different variety of resolutions. Let me share some examples to serve as inspiration:
- Work out to feel good, not thinner. Bodies come in different sizes, height, and weight. So when working out, don’t think about looking like that poster you saw on a street commercial, but feel better about yourself and what you are achieving. Like gaining more strength and energy.
- Be more inclusive, and drop old patrons. Try new recipes, like Latin recipes from countries you are curious to know more about. You will indulge your palate and learn more about different cultures and lifestyles. Even dare to cook them at home, what more fun and self-discovering than that?
- Read a book a month. Reading makes you smarter and also more empathic. By reading a good book a month you will drift away from reality, inviting your brain to relax and to exercise. Yes, both are possible at the same time! By doing this, you’ll be less inclined to suffer burn-out and even Alzheimer’s disease. Here is an idea for you to start!
- Visit new places. You don’t need to hop on a plane to discover new places and flavors. I bet there are many coffee shops, bookstores, or even events being hosted in your town that you have no idea about. Remember when you were a child and your curiosity was at its peak? Dare to be that child again and feed your curiosity with new places to go!
See? Take the pressure that goes with New Year’s Resolutions, and dare to challenge yourself in a healthy and surpassing way. Remember! You do not need to start a new year to make this possible, but be willing to take the first steps towards your goals.