While I understand the literal meaning of making a New Year’s resolution (ie, starting a new year off right), I often wonder why we do so when that time of year is challenging on so many levels. Personally, I have never made a New Year’s resolution for several reasons.
Winter = hibernation. Don’t get me wrong, I love outdoor winter activities, but by the time my family gets home from school/work, it’s so dark that we all feel like vegetating inside warm blankets and eating comfort foods. Motivation to change is not very high.
Work and family life tend to peak in December and we are all so exhausted by the time the holidays are upon us, we need the break. And once you learn to slow down, it’s tough to build momentum (ie, a body at rest tends to stay at rest). Perhaps we need that New Year’s resolution to nudge us along, but it’s so much harder when you are at the bottom.
In January, it’s so dark and depressing. There is something to be said about seasonal affective disorder and the light really can have a positive effect, which brings me to my point. Why not make spring resolutions instead? Spring signifies a rebirth, when the grass begins to grow, the flowers bloom and the light shines upon us longer (at least in the northern hemisphere). I was amazed the other day when I woke up refreshed, thinking I had slept in, only to discover that it was 6:00 am and the sun was out and the birds were chirping. By 9:00 am my family had watched some morning cartoons, eaten a full sit down breakfast and completed two loads of laundry. That meant I had time to go to Yoga!! It’s amazing what you can accomplish with a few more hours of light during your day.
I say don’t stress about those New Year’s resolutions. Wait until spring when you feel a little more motivated and are more likely to stick with them!