We hear it every single year. "My New Year's resolution is..." and "I'm definitely going to do it this year..."
Personally, there's nothing that annoys me more about this time of year than when someone tells me what they have set as a New Year's resolution. As cynical and pessimistic as it may sound, I'm going somewhere with it.
Millions of people set out to improve themselves every January, get a new job, move on to a new chapter in their lives. And while it's fantastic to see them accomplish those things, they are not New Year's resolutions. Sorry to burst the bubble, but those are things people strive for all the time, and only sometimes wait to do when the new year rolls around. No better time, right?
Actually, not really.
Ever wonder how the year seems to drag on, but the minute we hit the week of New Year's, it suddenly seems that only yesterday we were creating resolutions for this year? That's my point. We as a society spend too much time planning for the future and setting goals, and we aren't nearly as concerned with how we're going to see those things through as we should be.
The new year is a great time to set goals for ourselves and to get a head start with improving upon the last year and moving forward. My fear is that we become so consumed with the idea of a resolution, that we forget why we have one in the first place.
The whole point of a New Year's resolution is to accomplish something you didn't or couldn't the year before. We convince ourselves that by meeting these aspirations, we'll finally get to a point of satisfaction in life. I regret to inform you that this point does not exist. Happiness is not a resolution, it's a way of life. True happiness doesn't stem from getting to a place we worked hard to get to. It comes from the journey we take, the hard work we put into bettering ourselves, the experiences we have with others that help to create this revolution we so hunger for. These aren't things you can obtain in a moment.
If you want to go back to school, go. If your dream is to sing and dance on Broadway, go be that performer. If all you've ever wanted is to be fit and active, go become that person. If you have no earthly idea what you want to do, devote yourself to an open mind, and take every adventure you can.
There is a separation between a New Year's resolution and a goal. I urge you to strive for long-term happiness as your resolution this year, and for all years to come. I encourage you to set and meet your goals, but that you see the resolution in the time and effort you spend to achieve your goals. I hope that when you do, you'll feel that you yourself, are becoming revolutionized.
My New Year's resolution is not to reach a point of satisfaction, but to promise myself all the mistakes, the falls, the laughs, and the memories on my path of happiness.