Why February is the Real "First Month" of the New Year

I don’t know about you, but January doesn’t feel like the first month of the year to me. At least, it's not a very convincing beginning of the year. We spend most days in January recovering from holiday mania and over-socialization, trying to move on from the past year’s trauma, and accepting the fact that, sometimes, leaving things in the past is easier said than done. Plus, winter break creates an awkward amount of time and space away from your real life (or the real life you’re trying to start). February, however, is a completely different story. Here are a few reasons why:

You get back in the swing of things.

While most of us return to work and school towards the end of January, nothing feels like real life. We walk around campus, jetlagged and frantic, unsure of how we’re supposed to get back to our old routines or where to begin when making the new ones.

But after a week or two of trial and error, the early days of February feel very possible to conquer. Sleep schedules are reset to reasonable times, balancing class time with social time comes (almost) naturally, and you have newfound free time for bullet journaling and baking your blues away. The winter chill may still be lingering in the air, but we’re moving on to warmer days.

It's time to properly start resolutions.

While manifesting the resolutions you want to implement in your 2019 lifestyle is a badass concept, it’s not so simple to do when midnight strikes. From easing your way into healthier eating after almost two months of eggnog sippin’ and cookie eatin’ to getting that face right with skin care-self care, new habits don’t just happen overnight.

But don’t fret: February has a way of illuminating what you need to work on and what can wait for the next new year. Pockets of free time magically appear in your schedule for the improvement-centric activities your body and soul have longed for, getting rid of that self-pressure to do more. Overall, the year starts to slowly differentiate itself from the past and you are moving on up.

February provides a better mindset for improvement and understanding.

I think we can all agree that 2018 was, for lack of a better word, messy. From politics to a ridiculous amount of retrogrades, it seemed like the year was full of more lows instead of highs. And as much as we would love to forget everything that happened with the snap of a finger, we can’t.

But the more opportunities for growth begin to present themselves, the less we’re affected by mistakes or regrets from the past. With more distance from the past, the ghosts from 2018 that have tried to sneak into the new year eventually begin to fade away, leaving a clean slate for fresh starts in its place.

If it feels like 2019 has been unkind to you, don’t sweat it. Remind yourself that January is a “trial month” and there are still 11 more months to survive and thrive.


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