So, here I was thinking I’m the only person who does New Year’s goals instead of resolutions. Turns out that it is not quite so uncommon.
I was busy facebook stalking some friends when I saw that one of my old buddies that I have known since primary school is also an anti-resolutionist. Her thing?
New Year’s Themes.
Her theme is Just Do It. She plans to go for her dreams, take no prisoners and be an all-round bad-ass.
So this got me thinking about New Year’s traditions that people have.
Another friend of mine claims he is on the Chinese Calendar and thus did not celebrate the new year at all. I took this with a pinch of salt, of course, because he claims it is the year of the Cat (is there even such a thing?) when I know for a fact that it is still the year of the Rabbit, and when this ‘year’ ends at the end of January, it will be the year of the Dragon. (And no, I did not google that.)
I did a little research and here are some cool things I discovered:
- • The Mighty Mantra Mumbles – a friend of mine read this on the internet somewhere so I’m pretty sure you can google it. Basically, you just say “I can do it” everytime you are about to fall back into a habit that you usually would have made a resolution about breaking. Like, instead of a resolution like “Stop skipping gym”, you just chant “I can do it, I can do it, I can do it” whenever you need to resist the urge to skip gym. Genius!
Except for the part where it isn’t. Because you actually can’t do it. How would you do it? How???
•Quarterlies are an interesting spin on the concept of resolutions, the selling point being that these resolutions are reviewed and renewed every three months. I have to admit, that sounds a little more realistic than what most people do. Which is forget what they had decided to change about their lives within weeks of the new year. This system also allows one to set more specific goals. For example:
“This year I’ll support local musicians” is replaced by “In the next three months, I plan to attend one Freshlyground gig and buy at least two albums recorded by South African musicians instead of getting that Beyonce album that really sounds very African if ‘End of Time’ was any indication and I mean she did use those Namibian dancers in that one music video so it counts okay!!!” Or, you know. Something like that.
• Life Priorities – This one is pretty good. You start off the year by listing your three top priorities and then spend your time, energy and emotion focusing on things that cater to these priorities. Like, if your health is a Top 3 priority, you will do things that maintain and improve your health. Therefore, you will exercise, eat well, get rest, all that jazz. That’s, like, four resolutions in one. Or something.
•Name Your Year – Now, I’m pretty sure I read about this last year so it should also be google-able, but another friend actually inspired this one. Or a group of friends, actually. Last year, someone had jokingly nicknamed 2011 to 20elevate. I am serious. We even had a catch phrase which I will not share for fear of embarrassing myself and…myself. But the gist of it was that 2011 would be the year of taking things higher, reaching new levels. Whenever anyone rocked up to class in a hot outfit, we’d all raise our hands like we were in church and say, “Hey! 20elevate! Yes ma’am!” Whenever someone did well in a test, or overcame a lifelong fear, or did something fun and random, we would remind them what year it was.
Now 2012 is a tricky one. Facebook peeps have started calling it ’20self: This year I’m doing me’, which I guess is okay if you insist on the name matching the number. Nut has suggested we call it 20sexy, because this is the year we plan on getting all ladylike (haha, dream on.) But a classmate recently told me that she has called the year ‘2012: The Year of Success’. Granted, it’s not as catchy. But she is planning on riding this name all the way through third year–that’s Neuro, Musculo, Haem and clinical rotations–as her motivation and ‘resolution’. Which, you know, sounds like a plan to me.
I found a couple of other little traditions, but these were the only ones that didn’t come across sounding like someone was mocking Type A personalities and borderline OCD peeps who actually take resolutions seriously. And I don’t wanna be a mocker, in case you take resolutions seriously.
Also, all these methods made me feel a little better about the fact that I am not the only person who does goals instead of resolutions. Because, clearly, the whole world agrees that resolutions suck.
Happy year of the DragonCatRabbitThing!