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  • Writer's pictureTracey Lee

January: It's Resolution Time

January starts with a bang. I may be referring here to the fireworks fuelled celebrations that kick off in every city and town across the country; or the clanging headache that reveals itself on the first of January after the night before.

It is a strange thing to celebrate; the New Year. It is separated by a second that finishes the old and begins the new. Are we actually made different by the virtue of that one second? From our whooping and champagne quaffing one might actually begin to believe that there is something miraculous in that ticking clock. Is it the resolution making and hopefulness of increased happiness that is all at once possible in the movement from one year to the next? Is it our ability to bury the old year and all its failings and emerge renewed once the hangover has subsided?

More questions than answers I’m afraid. But I am interested in the resolutions people make. Lose weight, get fit, earn more, go to the gym, eat kale, become vegan, move house, grow vegetables, sing in public, travel, shop less, delete Facebook, get eyebrows tattooed, learn a language, read a book a week! These are all noble in some ways (maybe not the eyebrows) and most are likely to increase the capacity of the person who resolves to do these things. Some I would suggest, however, are a bit unrealistic and while achievable for a little while abate swiftly as the reality of a New Year sets in. Perhaps there is merit in just wanting to be a better, kinder, more compassionate person who cares about his or her environment. This type of resolution benefits us all.

In my own personal catalogue of failed resolutions I have lengthy lists of how to improve myself…and others. I have in the past leapt enthusiastically into the changes only to find my commitment to ‘sugar free’ or ‘raw food veganism’ just wasn’t making me a better person. In fact both short-lived lifestyle choices made me a person with whom no-one could live, or live near!

So I have decided to be content with a few achievable January goals that shouldn’t have some cyclonic fallout for my nearest and dearest. It's a short list and there will be others I add as the year unfolds but this will do for January.

1.    I will fill out my new 2017 diary neatly (important because it sets the tone)

2.    I will reconnect with family and friends who have been off the radar

3.    I will graciously accept the weather regardless of its fickle nature instead of complaining about it

4.    I will be kind and calm; and in the face of enormous annoyances I will at least be silent (this may be  the challenge)

5.    I will stop giving advice to people who haven’t asked for it (but probably not)

6.    I will avoid catastrophizing things such as the election of Donald Trump. He's not the devil incarnate; he's just a very, very big disappointment

7.    And most importantly I will be grateful for the life I have and the people I love. This I will remember every day.

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