A guide to New Year’s resolutions that you can actually keep

Goals that have staying power.

You know when you’re on a packed commuter train at 6pm on a Wednesday and your hip is awkwardly pressed up against a sweaty man and you just think to yourself ‘this time next year, I RESOLVE to not be in this exact situation’?

But just like the sly jerk it is, time ticks along. Before you know it, it’s December again, that sweaty man is even sweatier because of global warming and it’s basically End of Days.

So here we are, in our collective discontent, vowing to make major changes to our lives. This year, let’s avoid the annual shame-spiral that inevitably hits each June from not having managed to ‘make more money’ or ‘lose 8kg’.

Let’s change tact. It might be a good idea to start with some goals that have staying power.

1. Make a Note to Cleanse your Social Media

If you’re a true ambassador of your generation, you’ll feel anxiety at the thought of not clocking your Instagram feed. Leaving your Snapchats unopened will make you twitchy. But this is not a lesson in using social media less.

Frankly, there are enough naysayers out there who simply haven’t woken up to the fact that all those food prep videos are important. You need some meditation in your day.

No, this is your resolution to unfollow, unfollow, unfollow. Leave behind those Instagram accounts that should have you feeling inspired, but invariably leave you lost in a sea of boring quotes in handwritten cursive. Your time is precious.

2. Stop Dieting

See, the problem with New Year’s resolutions is that we go too big. You say you want to have Bella Hadid’s body by April, but before you know it, it’s the third week of March and you’re grating parmesan on everything, like the genius you are.

If you want to eat healthier and stop drinking so much, then do just that. Eat more greens, eat less sugar and drink less alcohol. It’s a simple and effective way to ensure you will never have to face the ‘diet’ resolution ever again.

3. Shut up

They say we gossip because it forges strong bonds with our fellow gossipers. And supposedly, there’s some clinical evidence to support the fact that it can feel better to use creative language than it feels to receive a back rub. But much like those inevitably sore back muscles, you’re bound for some subconscious knots following that bellyache session with Laura in accounts. If you’re going to harp on about how much you hate your friend’s hair, tell it to your dog.  Those guys will love you no matter what.

4. Start walking. Everywhere

The return of the gym membership was inevitable, in many ways. Much like the revival of Calvin Klein or Cindy Crawford, what was cool in the ’90s is apparently, once again, very much an aspiration for young people. But the issue with the gym, as we know, is the eye-watering price of a basic membership. We so easily forget we have a gym built into our bodies! An hour every day of brisk walking has been proven to pretty much solve every health issue you’ve got. And the time on your own is also a bit of a luxury. Also, no more commuter trains – win!

5. Start a Side Hustle

Another classic resolution is to ‘make more money’, as though it’s a simple case of thoughtfully deciding to become a baller. Without a plan, it’s about as effective as wishing for Aziz Ansari to be your best friend. It would be nice, but it’s not going to happen. Working 9-5 will not a baller make. You’ve got to hustle: start a brand, a blog, an Etsy account selling repurposed mason jars. You might even be smart enough to get into the stock market and if you are, let’s talk.

Because if 2016 taught us anything, it’s that it’s time to do things differently. 2017. It’s going to be a doozy.

This feature was originally published in Fashion Journal 164. You can read it here.

Image by TwylaMae.

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