I hate the concept of the New Year.
Honestly, I only liked January 1st for a sole reason: it was a rare day-off for gymnastics practice. Other than a much needed rest for my body, the day itself held little appeal, since, realistically, a new year can occur on any given day. January 1st is merely a social concept of the start (and end) of a year. On that same theme, New Year's resolutions are--more often than not--empty promises that inevitably crash and burn. In fact, 80% of people will abandon their new year-related goals by the second week of February. Why does this statistic tend to persist? Most individuals expect to see instant gratification from the actions they pursue. When this fulfillment falls flat, people feel discouraged and inevitably turn to older (and less desirable) habits.
In short, resolutions are over-hyped: they fail to produce tangible results, and they are more discouraging than encouraging. This article, however, is not a statement urging you to drop goal-setting altogether. Goals are important; they act as benchmarks to spur career, academia, and self progress. With the new year rapidly approaching, find a way to make your resolutions stick.
"Living in the now" is an overused phrase that borders on cliché, but, this mindset does produce results. Try embracing each day as a new opportunity to reach an objective rather than stating a lofty year-long ideal. Journaling, prioritizing ideas, and maintaining a balance between work and fun are strong habits of successful goal setters. Ignore New Year's and start following your goals today--with a vision and a plethora of mindfulness practices, you can achieve anything.
So, starting now, let's go forth and seize the day.