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How to Make Better New Year’s Resolutions

This year, I committed a crime: I went to sleep at 10:30pm on December 31st. I missed the countdown, I broke the New Year's tradition. 

But let’s be real for a second, what was I going to get by staying up? I tried my best to stay up but I couldn’t and honestly I didn’t want to. What was the point?

Earth completes an orbit around the sun and we think it’s going to magically fix our lives. We think January 1st is a reset button, but it’s not. Nothing has changed. Nothing will change unless we want it to change. But wanting change is not enough, we need to take steps to make that change.

So how do you go about making change in your life in 2021? Do you make a New Year’s resolution? In my opinion, most New Year’s resolutions don’t work. You always make an extensive list of everything you want to change. But the list is overwhelming to look at, so you ignore it. Now fast forward 12 months, you’re probably talking about how you’re going to fix your life with the new year. You tell yourself 2022 is your year and the cycle continues. So how about we do things differently this time?

Write down how you want to feel this year. Regardless of how cool you may think you are in being emotionless, you’re not. So really ask yourself, how do you want to feel? Happy? Strong? Independent? Knowledgeable? 

Now that you’ve made your list of feelings, think about what you can do to make yourself feel these positive emotions. Does working out make you feel strong? Does dancing make you happy? Does going to the grocery store by yourself make you feel independent? 

Throughout the year, whenever you’re feeling negative emotions, look back at your list. If you’re feeling weak, work out since it makes you feel strong. If you’re feeling sad, why not have a dance party in your room since it makes you happy. It’s not going to completely fix why you’re sad but it still makes you happy, right? That’s what you should be focusing on. It’s the little changes that’ll help you end 2021 feeling satisfied with how you carried yourself.  

Thamilini Balakumar is a Global Business and Digital Arts student at the University of Waterloo. She has a passion for creative writing and storytelling. In addition to writing, she tells stories through her photography and videography.
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