Why I Don't Make New Year's Resolutions

Why I Don't Make New Year's Resolutions

It might be more beneficial to keep an open mind about future endeavors as opposed to deciding on a specific goal.
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You can’t think of New years without also thinking of the word “resolution.” The beginning of a new year has moved from a celebration of new beginnings and unlimited possibilities to a list.

By deciding what you want to accomplish at the beginning of the year, you can end up limiting what you are capable of or willing to do.

Some people need lists and goals to motivate them, and I admit that I fall into this category sometimes, but doing this can promote the mentality that once the goal is accomplished, you’re done.

So, these people might not maintain their motivation throughout the year. It might be more beneficial to keep an open mind about future endeavors.

Another issue may come in that the chosen resolution is too high a goal. When this is the case, it greatly decreases the motivation as people realize the difficulty. They are less likely to rally and accomplish it than they are to give up.

By giving up, they see the year as a kind of failure and aren’t always willing to see the potential in upcoming months.

Resolutions can also produce a lot of stress, as this goal is made the center of a person’s life. The rigidness of this placement of importance means a necessary devotion that can be draining. This is increased by other responsibilities like jobs, personal life, college, and/or health.

I do not think that goals and resolutions are bad, just that they do not positively impact a person’s life when equated with potential happiness. Goals can be good when kept in appropriate perspective, not as a necessary or vital event. But that is what New Years has become, a way to enforce more structure upon yourself and stress yourself before you have even gotten the chance to relax and appreciate what the future has to offer.

It is impossible to know specifically what the future holds. I personally believe that making a plan for your life can be helpful as long as you are willing to accept another outcome. Hard-resolved resolutions bring disappointment largely due to a person’s inability to acknowledge that the resolution isn’t the right fit.

This can be compared to general knowledge. People used to believe that the earth was flat until it was discovered to be round. In this way, resolutions can only be effective if they are adaptable to changing beliefs and situations.

I have made resolutions in the past and have found that they were just another disappointment. Through my experiences, I have changed my perspective in order to be more open to what the new year brings. Of course, I have ideas and hopes for the new year, but I am going to keep them as such. What plans I make will be regarded as a kind of outline for me; getting ideas out there without a finality.

I don’t write this as if I don’t have things I want to happen for me in the upcoming year, just that I want to take things as they come, without major disappointments or expectations.

After all, goals and resolutions are a personal matter, and I support anyone who is striving for a happy life. If that means a New Year’s resolution, great. Personally, I am going to be open to whatever 2018 might have in store for me.

Cover Image Credit: Brandy Clymer

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19 Struggles Only Girls With The 'Looks Thin In Clothes But Not In A Bikini' Body Type Will Understand

A resounding 'thank you' to whoever decided one-pieces were cool again.
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We grew up thinking the world was black and white. There's tall people and short people. There's old people and young people.

There's fat people and skinny people.

But as you get older, you realize there is a lot more in between those two ends of the spectrum than you ever thought possible. Especially when it comes to weight. And you do a lot more realizing if you're in an awkward position on that scale... Literally.

1. People always tell you to stop saying you are fat

Obviously, your friends SHOULD prevent you from talking negatively about yourself. And if you only saw you when you were fully dressed, you'd probably tell yourself to stop saying you're fat, too.

2. And are kind of surprised by your actual weight

You've definitely had friends who are shocked by the number on your scale because you can carry it pretty well when you are fully dressed.

3. Sometimes you feel like a catfish

Have you ever changed out of your super cute, flattering outfit and looked at yourself in the mirror and thought... Wow, am I lying to people?

4. But you know this is probably true for most people

When you're wearing clothes, typically the parts of a body that bring about insecurities (stomach, namely) are covered. No matter the body type, you realize most people are more comfortable in clothes than out of them.

5. Your confidence is often contingent on the month

November? Yep, won't need to be in shorts or a bikini for about 7-8 months. I am good to go.

February? I'll need to be in a bikini soon.. I could use some work.

6. You are thrilled by the one-piece bathing suit making a fashion come back

A resounding 'thank you' to whoever decided it was time to give one-pieces a try again. The stomachs of us in-between gals are appreciative.

7. Crop tops are 95% of the time not your top of choice

Yeah, okay, clothes are supposed to work for me and not against me.

8. You honestly don't understand jean sizes

I have fluctuated in weight a lot of my life, most recently losing 25lbs, and I still did not budge in jean sizes.

9. You wonder what other people think when they see you

Do other people see me as thin in clothing? Or fat in a bikini? What size am I perceived as?

10. Shopping is kind of a nightmare

Have you ever found about 27 items you liked, added the prices and thought, ah, it is going to be so tough to choose from all of these items? Only to go into the fitting room and realize only 2 of the items fit you well? Yep, me every single time I go to the store.

SEE ALSO: 7 Struggles Of Being The Girl Who Is "Not Skinny" But Also "Not Fat"

11. You're thankful that at least you've got boobs

You can kind of hide them in clothes, and then let them steal the show away from your tummy in a swimsuit.

12. You have a hard time setting weight-loss goals

You aren't really sure how overweight you are (if you are, at all) and you don't want to be at an unhealthy weight on either side of the spectrum.

13. Body positivity comes and goes

There are days, weeks or even months when you feel like the most beautiful person on the planet, and then something happens (old jeans don't fit, you try on a new bathing suit, etc.) and you convince yourself that all of that confidence was wrong and undeserved.

14. You always try on the biggest size first

Either this or you're in a weird limbo between the smallest plus sizes size and the biggest generic sizes size.

15. Half of you knows every body is a bikini body, and half of you is convinced that yours is not

You know that your body is worthy of wearing whatever you want to wear, but looking at yourself and seeing what society (and you) sometimes deem as unattractive can eat away at that knowledge.

16. But you also know self-love and confidence are key to beauty

Even if you have to fake it, you know that feeling confident is going to carry you pretty far.

17. Being in a bathing suit is a constant game of readjustment

Okay, I am sitting. Pull the bottoms up to cover as much as my stomach as possible and the back of the top down to cover any back rolls.

18. You've avoided the mirror after a shower before

You know that you are just going to lose all the comfort you felt in your body during the day when you see yourself, so sometimes it is best to just avoid it.

19. Ultimately, you know your beauty is not contingent on what you are wearing

The goal for everyone should be to get to a point where it doesn't matter if you're in a snowsuit, a bathing suit or a birthday suit... You can see your beauty no matter what and feel confident despite what you have on. It'll take time, but falling in love with the way you look is worth it.

Cover Image Credit: Sara Petty

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Rethinking Spring Cleaning

It's not all dust bunnies and silver polish.
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One morning as you leave your house you begin to feel something that you have not felt since mid-October. The air smells dewier— you didn’t even register this as possible. It’s not warm, but it’s not shrewdly freezing, and it’s when this cold-though-perhaps-cool air hits your skin that you realize: it’s spring.

Spring, ah, yes, the season before summer, after winter. In like a lion, out like a sauna. Memories of spring include a palette of pastel colors, the first crocus to break winter ground, yellow dust of tree pollen on windshields, and the plague of hay fever. Spring also has various event-centric connotations: spring flings, spring shopping, spring break, and most importantly within the frame of this article, spring cleaning.

The unpleasurable but eventually rewarding process of throwing away clutter and dusting what had gone undusted for the past year; spring cleaning is the literal 'Mother of All Rituals.' You nag yourself into decidedly throwing away that toaster oven, and then clean your actual oven to ensure that you really don’t need that toaster oven. It’s a give-and-take process, but usually, its conclusion leaves you with about two weeks of feeling new, the sort of rebirth that a secular spring has taken on for the masses, surprisingly.

But what if instead of cleaning out a closet or scrubbing a toilet, spring cleaning took on a completely different meaning this year? Something perhaps more directly connected to that which a half-watered-down bottle of Fabuloso can’t resolve: a cleansing of the SOUL. If you think I’m getting metaphysical with this, you would only be partially right.

A lot of the time the idea of mentally or physically cleansing brings to mind images of drinking kombucha on a silent retreat in Nepal. In reality, we don’t need to get all namaste to do some mental spring cleaning. Instead, we need to be able to recognize our most toxic, self-indulging habits and practices, and try to clear our mind of whatever allows us to perpetuate them.

Let me be less indirect: if something is bothering you or if someone is upsetting you without resolve, the best possible thing you can do for yourself is to take a step back, and say “goodbye.” Not allowing these issues to build also means that you’re not allowing dust to accumulate, anger to rise, distractions to perpetuate. Sweeping your hallways in frustration might be a great way to combat dirt, but won’t help to resolve the issues you’re having with a significant other.

We might feel cleaner after we color-coordinate your closet, but ultimately the problem is so often rooted not in your turquoise sweater having spent most of the year next to an orange flannel, but it's that you are taking control of something, anything, and that something functions as a distraction from real problems.

Dustbust every fuzzy bunny of lint that claims ownership of the space between your couch and your loveseat, and organize every pot and pan you own until you are stainless steel in the face. In the end, if springtime has not allowed you to be a bigger, better, more independent person, did it really happen? The weather hardly tells me it did, what with the gap shrinking between summer and winter, so it’s really up to you to give spring the sort of pseudo-secular rebirth it desires.

Cover Image Credit: Eduard Militaru / Unsplash

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