Sunday, January 1, 2017

New Year, New You, Eh?

Yeah yeah yeah, we get it. It's a new year. But are you really going to change? If you are, I suggest you try not to make your goals on New Year's because, well, we all know how it usually goes.

"This year, I'm focusing on school and getting my shit together. THIS IS MY YEAR!"
"I'm gonna work out every day!"
"PUMPED OKAY LET'S DO THIS!"

*Focuses on school and does well on the first test*
"Man, I'm killing it. I deserve a break." *Goes out with friends and flunks the next test*
*Meets cute guy or girl and settles for a lower GPA*
*Working out every day turns into working out once a week*
*Relationship ends*
*Cries for a few weeks, maybe months*
*Starts working out again*
*Holidays cheer!*

*New Year's Eve Again*
"Okay, now's my chance to focus on myself again. THIS IS MY YEAR! YEAH!"

And then the cycle starts all over again. Now, this is the pretty cynical way to look at it, I know. But, it's also one of the ways you can almost guarantee failure: setting an unrealistic goal for yourself.
We're not superhumans. We're not machines, and hell, even machines don't always work.
I'm not saying you can't earn the big bucks if you really push for it. I'm just saying that sometimes we set ourselves up for disappointment and we lose motivation because the dream seems unattainable. It's tantalizing. Sometimes, to get to the ultimate dream, we have to walk up to it step-by-step, and although you may turn a corner only to find more stairs, short of breath and thighs throbbing, if you really really want it, you have to go up the steps. You can't fly over them (and for the sake of the metaphor, there's no elevator).

For example, if you wanna get fit or something and you don't really work out, start out with a reasonable goal like working out 3 times a week, then make your way up to 5-7, and maybe you'll actually start enjoying it. It takes time to form a habit, so patience is also key. You're never going to see the results after one day. I think that's the problem, especially in our technology-driven society; answers are so instantaneous we're used to getting what we want right away. Google search just about anything, and you'll get it. No one bothers taking too much of their time really looking, but the thing is, to find something worthwhile, you need to take your time, and to take that time, you need patience.
I wonder if there's been a study about how technology has affected people's patience. If there is, my guess is that patience has decreased over the decades.

The power went out in three neighborhood in my area, so I spent my New Year's Eve without any electricity, which I didn't mind because I love candles and it kind of gave me a chance to reflect without any distractions, without anyone else's tweets or instagram posts affecting my decisions. Just me. That's a little scary. When are we ever really alone anymore? Like, really alone. No social media to distract our loneliness, no TV––just you, left to your own thoughts. Some of us might go a little crazy, but maybe you'd be forced to deal with issues you've been avoiding.

That's all part of the healing, you know, the hurting. Wounds hurt before they heal. The pain in your heart is the same way, but what complicates that is that our mind can numb yourself from feeling the pain, but it doesn't go away; the pain stays there, frozen in time, never healing until you unfreeze. If that makes any sense.

Beautiful things do happen, but nothing worth fighting for comes easy.

Just food for thought, I guess.

Happy 2017,

Alena

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