Life

New Year Doesn’t Mean New You (how to stop the resolution hamster wheel)

As we exit 2020 and travel headfirst into the new year, I feel like the New Year’s resolutions everything (emails, articles, blog posts, quotes, pictures, and on and on) are all about changing something. 

The phrase “New Year, New Me” has already been sent to me in some fashion a million times and that is just this week!

Honesty here..I think I have even said this and may even have a shirt with this saying.  But this year, this very statement got me thinking. 

Why does a new year have to bring a new you? 

Don’t get me wrong.  The new year does bring hope of new beginnings and newfound excited to start a new “thing.  But…. suddenly this starts to bring a feeling that we HAVE to change something. 

Did you know that the number one resolution in the U.S. is to lose weight? 

This is the time of year where marketing is kicked into high gear about making a resolution to be “skinny”. What would happen if we changed that to be healthier, more active, and overall feel better about yourself?

This year, change the manuscript and select New Year’s goals that are about a healthy lifestyle vs. the number on the scale.  There is nothing broken so why select a resolution that sets the negative tone right from the gate that implies this?  Instead, we are going to shift our mindset (and words) to re-create our New Year’s resolutions into something that makes us look forward to the goal AND get off the hamster wheel of BS resolutions.

new years resolutions

Body image has become a hot topic.  So much information hitting our brains these days maybe subliminally telling us that beauty only lies in weighing a certain amount or looking a certain way.

Why, when, and where did we start thinking that everything must look the same way? 

I found a video that really got me thinking. They used the difference between dog breeds and that we wouldn’t take a poodle and expect all dogs to be like that…. so why do we do that to people?  They called this “poodle science”.  Check the video…this is  good one.

What would happen if we stop thinking the number on the scale set our mindset of health? 

How to Pick the Right Resolution for You

new years resolution

A lot of our resolutions are complete duds as they may be created based on what someone else is telling you to change (like the Facebook ad that tells us we need to lose fat faster). 

I think the root of these companies, coaches, and ads is to have a positive impact on the health of a person but the way we go about marketing this brings a negative impact that something is wrong with us today.

What if we shifted the mindset (and words) to say that we want to change our overall health?

Why are resolutions only marketed for January 1st?

All this “new year…new you” talk , why do we put so much focus on making a resolution only at the beginning of a year.  I mean…for most of us busy ladies…the hustle of getting through the holidays can leave us exhausted and sitting with a full glass of wine.  Why would we even want to think about setting a new “goal” that has crazy action items to be completed? 

We can totally set a goal at any time and maybe we need to relabel January as the month that women everywhere get to take a rest (or a long girl’s trip).

So….now what?

If you find all this relentless (and often negative), then join the club.  Today, I have made the decision to click the unsubscribe button on this thinking that something “needs” to be fixed. 

The “New Year, New Yet” motto is framed in a manner that makes it seem uplifting, motivating, and encouraging.  But the reality of this statement is that it is marketable to companies.  It’s hitting us where we are the most vulnerable, punching right into a pain point as we come off the holiday festivities.  PLUS, the sheer volume of information coming from ALL angles can make us feel like we are failing before we even start.

What can we do instead?

Change the goal

Please stop setting goals that imply that something is broken.  YOU ARE NOT BROKEN.  Instead of saying…I want to be skinny…lose weight (and how is this even defined), change the wording.  What if we said I want to be healthier, find new foods to try, be more active in my everyday activities, or to feel better about yourself overall? 

What if the goal to learn how to re-love yourself?

Don’t set a timer on when you can start

Any new day is a day to start something.  Saying that January “has to be the month” just adds unneeded pressure that none of us needs. 

Like seriously, unless you are living on a tropical island, January can be one of the most miserable months of the year.  Like it’s stupid cold.  Could we possibly pick the worst month to be so hard on ourselves? 

I read an article that asked if we could change “New Year, New You” to “New Year, perfectly-fine-as-you-are you…and I think this is perfect.

Take Social Comparison and Kick it in the Butt

Did you know that 90% of Instagram is absolutely fake?  We live in society of filters and photoshop.  So why are we comparing ourselves to this unrealistic expectation of normal day life?  I don’t know about you but each day is an adventure and sometimes planning is a buzz word. 

It may feel like everyone is up in their cute leggings, eating their oatmeal with perfectly cut bananas, and taking a barre class, but I promise the behind the scene of that picture looks exactly like our kitchen of real life. 

From the beginning of time, we have been comparing ourselves to get a sense of how well (or not) that we are doing – or even as a measurement of our self worth.  And the new year puts this social comparison on warp speed.

Today…stop comparing yourself to the filtered photo-shop picture.  YOU are doing an amazing job today and will again tomorrow.

new years resolutions

Temporal Comparison

Have you heard about temporal comparison?  I just found this term and totally sharing. 

The concept of temporal comparison is that when you compare yourself today with yourself of another time, rather than yourself now with someone else.  This is about looking at how far YOU have come rather than thinking “look how much better you are over someone else”. 

This is about finding your own lane , setting your own pace, selecting your own route, and taking into account anything that is relevant to you and you alone.

A few years ago, I was on this constant battle of comparing myself to the perfect instructor who was teaching 408 classes per week, wearing lululemon leggings, and only drinking protein shakes.  I do look back on this and just shake my head.  Now…and focusing on my lane, I am able to take and lead classes that make sense for my body, wear the perfect leggings from Old Navy, and eat real food (like Chick Fil A).

Hard Truth….Goals are NOT everything

So many books and people telling us what happiness is really about and how to create goals to achieve it.  But is this really about the starting and end points?  Or is there something else?

What if it is the in-betweens?  The moments? 

I am not saying to not set the big goals.  We need this sometimes.  But…what if we shifted the focus from a certain goal to our daily life.  Not what I want to have, or where I want to go, but instead on how to spend time right now..

It’s a Marathon…not a Sprint

Almost everything falls into the category of a marathon.  That slow pace of moving forward without stopping.  Sometimes, I think we get stuck in a trap that a “goal” must be completed as fast as possible without any moments of stopping.  We must have this attitude that this is absolutely fantastic and keep going.  But who is this person?  There are going to be times that it sucks.  Yep….sucks.

If we go into this thinking that some changes may take longer than others, there will be fast parts and many more slower parts, there will be times where we question if this really is the right thing to be doing…yep, marathon.

Make New Mistakes.  Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody’s ever made before.  Don’t freeze, don’t stop, don’t’ worry that it isn’t good enough, or it isn’t perfect, whatever it is you’re scared of doing, do it.  Make your mistakes, next year and forever.” – Neil Gaiman

Neil Gaiman
new years resolution

Wrapping this one up!

It is true that a new year can mean a new start for us, but those new beginnings and changes do not have to be tied to our appearance.

For me and this upcoming year, I am entering this year with permission to be kind to myself.  To know that January 1st doesn’t have to bring some big goal to complete or change that needs to take place.  This year, I am going to take more moments to stop and enjoy that exact moment.  To love on those around me.  To find happiness in the small moments that happen every day.  To find the inner mean voice and change it’s message.

Your turn. What do you think about this?

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Jaime Warren is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to www.badassmamagang.com Affiliate links may be used in posts. I only recommend products/services that I absolutely LOVE. Full disclosure policy is located HERE.

new years resolutions

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