Already regretting your choice in New Year’s resolution..? Try these anti-resolutions instead.

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Another year is here, which means the usual barrage of January promises to ‘be good’ this year and buckle down to your {insert here} diet regime or exercise plan. Sound familiar? It’s how New Year’s have tended to go for the majority of us… But this year I sense a slight paradigm shift, with the acknowledgement that resolutions half-heartedly made once a year DO NOT work. Particularly when they focus on how we look and the need to improve this to improve how we feel. So in this post we’ll be exploring some anti-typical resolutions that might just give you that warm, fuzzy feeling you were hoping for.

Social media blackout (or time-outs if that’s not feasible!)

Social media can be detrimental for the following reasons: 1. It’s a massive time waster, 2. It can give false expectations as to what your life should be like, 3. It can make us feel shit about ourselves, over and over and over again…

One potential goal for 2019 could be to have self-imposed ‘time-outs’ from all or certain types of social media or (if you’re feeling brave) delete some or all of your accounts. See how it makes you feel. Or if that is too much why not unfollow, unlike, block or report things/people that make you feel badly about yourself or make you feel like you’re not good enough or need to change things about yourself. Likewise, try and follow a wide range of accounts that show all sorts of body shapes and sizes, different genders and abilities, different races, cultures, and more. Make 2019 a year of embracing diversity.

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Self-compassion

Be kinder to yourself. Quit the life or body bashing and make time to give your body what it needs to feel good. Otherwise popularly known as self-care, make 2019 a year for asking your body what it needs at any particular time and make time to give it that. You might find that taking time to take care of yourself can help nurture your physical, mental and emotional well-being while contributing to feelings of peace and happiness.

Even small things that seem boring or insignificant can make a difference to your general state of mind and ability to think clearly. Resolve to keep your to-do list free of clutter whenever possible; so book that doctor’s appointment you’ve been meaning to forever, wash your bed sheets or go just get that food shopping done.

Little acts add up.

Gratitude

Make a resolution to fit time into your day to reflect on what you’re grateful for and what has given you peace or laughter or positivity. Writing this down every day (or whenever you remember!) can give you evidence when you look back over all the things you have in your life to be grateful for. I’ve heard of people asking their partner over dinner or before they go to bed and sharing what small thing they are grateful for that day. Sounds nice doesn’t it!

If you can’t help yourself, help someone else

Some days it can feel really hard to do the things we know we should to help ourselves. Whether that’s taking the dog for a walk that helps to clear our busy minds or making a balanced lunch to take to work the next day, some days it just won’t be possible. So on days like these, take a second to think how you can do something that will better someone else’s day or state of mind. Tell a friend how much you value their friendship… buy a coffee for a stranger… or (my personal favourite) buy The Big Issue, you won’t regret it! Never underestimate the power that simple, small acts can have for other people or for your own well-being. You might just end up starting a chain of kind acts and gaining some good karma for yourself along the way.

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Eco-resolutions

And finally, if you’re looking for a resolution or goal to help both your own smugness AND the planet why not try an eco-resolution so that you can do your bit in 2019? Some examples might be…

  • Buy less, do more – let go of material things and collect memories instead
  • Resolve to only buy a takeaway coffee when you have your reusable cup handy
  • Pick up 1 piece of rubbish every day
  • Swap Deliveroo for Too Good to Go – this app tackles food waste AND gives you a great deal
  • If it’s available to you try to buy more from local producers and suppliers (Amazon won’t go bust without you, promise).

 

Enjoy the little things in life, for one day you may look back and realise they were the big things” – Robert Brault (or Kurt Vonnegut, who the fuck knows!)

 

For the keen readers and evidence-checkers amongst you:

The Guardian (2019). You’re going to fail you New Year’s resolution – but it might not be your fault. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2019/jan/01/youre-going-to-fail-your-new-years-resolution-but-it-might-not-be-your-fault

Too Good To Go – https://toogoodtogo.co.uk/en-gb

Huffington Post (2019). 10 New Year’s resolutions to help the planet in 2019. Available at: https://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/entry/10-resolutions-to-help-the-planet-in-2019_uk_5c176d52e4b009b8aea8de94

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