Can you believe it’s only been 14 years since Y2K? I know, me neither. Time really does fly. That means it’s also been about 14 years since I last made or stuck to a New Year’s resolution. Probably. I don’t even know if I’ve ever truly made one, except in that vague sort of way, like, “I’m going to clean out my car…sometime…maybe only when I need it to transport a large object.” I do like the idea of resolutions, but in reality, does anyone stick to them?* You can’t just be like, “Oh, this day is the first day of January, which makes it totally different from yesterday, which means I’m suddenly inspired to change myself!” I think this applies especially to smokers and unhealthy people. In order to change, you have to be either really super inspired or completely terrified. That’s why they have all those pictures of totally scary British teeth at the dentist’s office.
Also, another way to be motivated to complete your resolutions is apparently if you have an entire family full of Judgey McJudgersons awarding you points at the end of the year in a weird pressure-filled competition. I heard an interview on NPR about Michael Moore’s family, who actually does this. Once they refused to give a point at the end of the year to a family member who vowed to learn how to hip-hop dance, sustained a major injury in the process, and was unable to complete her class. But in the same interview, they spoke with a psychologist who said it’s been proven that people are actually less likely to complete resolutions when they tell others what they’re going to do. They feel such a sense of pride just from stating what they plan on doing, that they don’t feel the need to follow through with it. It’s basically a lose-lose. Either you’ll tell supportive people what you’re going to do, and they’ll pat you on the back, or you’ll tell crazy people what you’re going to do, and they’ll berate you if you don’t do it.
But, I still felt compelled this year to choose a few resolutions and then announce to everyone my plans, taking the chance that a) I will not follow through and everyone will judge me for it, or b) I will not follow through because I feel accomplished or bored or lazy. Some are serious and some are silly, but don’t bother asking me about them 4 months out. I most likely will have no idea what you’re talking about.
*The answer is no, which is one of the reasons I avoid the gym during the first two months of the year, but am able to go back later. It’s my own backwards resolution, in response to all the New Year gym-goers.
1. Be a more socially-conscious consumer. This is my main serious resolution. Because I am a slight hoarder of sentimental items and clothes, I can’t commit to being a minimalist, but I’d like to focus on buying less, buying higher-quality, supporting small businesses, and purchasing eco-friendly and fair trade products.
2. Plan a road trip for when I move back home, and visit all the best U.S. destinations for camping and hiking. I’ve always gone seamlessly from one school or job to another, not taking a break in between, or not traveling during breaks because I thought I couldn’t afford it. What better time than when I don’t actually have a job lined up?
3. Stop talking about how cold I am in the winter.
4. Grow an herb garden.
5. Wear bold lipstick occasionally.
6. Get my ears pierced.
7. Bake more cookies.
8. Go to the beach (because it’s only 15 minutes away and I’ve been, like, twice).
9. Look at pictures of dogs at least once a day.
10. Write letters to friends.
THE END HAPPY NEW YEAR Y’ALL