With every new year comes a wave of new year’s resolutions. It is an opportunity discard everything we do not like about ourselves and embrace new lifestyles. However, there is a reason most new year’s resolutions fail or worse, do not even make it to the end of January. This can be attributed to the fact that change does not happen overnight or that human beings tend to set unrealistic goals. Perseverance and hard work bring about change, qualities that are lacking in today’s generation.
The current trend is to expect results without putting in effort and when we do not get what we want, we simply blame the system. We live in an era of shortcuts but there are no shortcuts around hard work. This doesn’t mean that there isn’t an easier path. My life-hack to making the whole ‘New Year New Me’ process achievable is rather than developing new good habits, to just leave behind old bad ones. I feel that getting rid of a bad habit is equal to developing a dozen good habits.
First off, skip the gym and cut the junk. Hitting the gym is by far the most ambitious and poorly executed new year’s resolution. Millions of people get a yearlong membership at their local gym. After the first month, they are more likely to travel to a new country than visit the gym. It is time to learn from the mistakes humanity has made, year after year. Just stop eating junk food instead. There are thousands of delicious and healthy recipes available online. Add a couple of fruits and a bowl of spinach to your diet and you are good to go. You will feel the difference within a week.
Rather than developing new good habits, to just leave behind old bad ones
Don’t be a couch potato! Everyone watches television. It is an important media outlet which keeps us in sync with the world but too much of anything is bad. Mindless consumption of pointless entertainment makes our mind dull. People who watch more than two hours of television a day are less likely to be physically active and more likely to be suffering from loneliness. As Ravi Zacharias correctly said, “television has been the single greatest shaper of emptiness.” Start reading the newspaper instead and limit your time watching television to thirty minutes.
Scary I know but pack in your pack of smokes. To put things into perspective just imagine a scenario where you live or die at the mercy of a coin toss. I would certainly not be taking those odds, especially if it was about staying alive. I do not even need to make a case for why you should stop smoking. You already know what needs to be done. If you are hooked on nicotine then you can always try the nicotine patches and gums or start vaping. While both these alternatives are problematic in their own sense, they are definitely safer than smoking.
The new year doesn’t have to be about becoming a chameleon and completely changing who you are
Finally, you and plastic need to break up. The world we live in is in dire need of saving. Today, plastic is one of the prime pollutants. The biggest problem is that a plastic bottle takes around 500 years to decompose, whilst a plastic bag can take up to a thousand years. You can make a significant difference by using paper or cloth bags every time you go grocery shopping. Carry your own bottle to university or work. The world becomes a better place with every plastic bottle you choose not to buy. This change in lifestyle is more for the planet and less for yourself. It is high time we became environmentally conscious.
So, to reiterate, the new year doesn’t have to be about becoming a chameleon and completely changing who you are. By simply stopping some negative habits, you can become the best version of you without taking on a tonne of extra stresses. At the end of the day, we all just want to live our best life right?