By Mea Donnelly
New Year’s resolutions are the worst. It is the time of year where you make promises to yourself that you normally wouldn’t, and give up by the time Punxsutawney Phil sees his shadow. New Year’s resolutions are false expectations that you then feel bad about when they don’t happen.
But honestly, it is very hard to make a 180-degree life change cold turkey. Going to the gym every day when you are a couch potato can seem drastic, and the high of getting healthy wears off fast. It’s not you, it’s that a year is a really long time and life is constantly changing. Who you are in January of 2017 and what you are facing will probably be a lot different than the obstacles you face in December 2017. A single goal to keep for 365 days is therefore implausible – life will get in the way.
Instead, I think people should have monthly resolutions. Not things they wish they could do, but things they know they actually can do, like eating healthier, go to the gym, or being a better person. By setting monthly resolutions, people put themselves to a higher standard because they have far less time to achieve the goal and won’t quit right away. If 75 percent of resolutions are abandoned by the first month, wouldn’t it be easier to keep amending your resolutions, since each month of everyone’s lives will look very different from the last? Life is unpredictable. Maybe in January it is totally possible to cut out alcohol or dairy, but in March this is less feasible with St. Patrick’s Day and spring break.
So Illini, go forth. Come up with goals, but achieve them by February so you can create new ones to keep on achieving. Make 2017 a great one.