In defense of the ‘New Year, New Me!’ mindset

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In defense of the ‘New Year, New Me!’ mindset

I’m an imperfect person who needs to change, OK?

A lot of good's been done in terms of self-love and positivity in the past few years, and that's great. Twitter threads and Tumblrs are devoted to taking care of ourselves and banishing negative thoughts and ideas for self-care. But like most previously-imbalanced things, the pendulum's swung so far in the other direction that it's practically a taboo to say anything bad about yourself.

Take new year's resolutions for example. Previously, they were a way to help jumpstart better habits and hawk gym memberships. Now, they're a damaging mindset — you're perfect and don't need to change at all.

Time is a construct. So is the Gregorian calendar. But this societal idea of rebirth and renewal is fucking exciting. I mean, we all collectively have this concept that time is literally starting over so we can all be brand-new. Isn't that kind of low-key magical? I think so and I'm not even that high right now.

The practically-mythological idea of New Year's Day is amazing, and I'm not going to shut up about it.

There's a January 1 start date for a reason

My mom is a high school counselor, so I've been exposed to a lot of motivational posters with cartoon cats on them in my day. But some of them, other than reminding us of the very real, totally scientific fact that marijuana will kill you with just one hit, are actually pretty great. One says "a goal not planned out is just a wish" or some shit. The point is, you have to pick a specific day to start changing and actually plan it out, pen-to-paper or it'll just get lost in your daydream folder right in between an orgy with all the hot Star Wars guys and what you'd say to your boss if you won the Powerball.

January 1 is the perfect start day for a reason. Most people are off work before the holiday and the day of. You're around family and friends, looking back at the year you're leaving behind. It's a time of self-reflection. Then, when New Year's Day rolls around, you're staring down the barrel of basically two whole months of nothingness. Seriously, there's nothing happening in January and February. So you've got all the time in the world to work on that New You. And then there's the psychological aspect. Like I said, we all just collectively believe that everything starts over at the stroke of midnight. It's a serious social momentum that can keep you accountable.

We all have things we need to change

And I do mean need. Maybe you neeeed to get your finances in order or start eating better or drink less or even just clean out that junk drawer of chapsticks and a 7-yer-old vibrator collecting dust in your nightstand. You're not a perfect person. I'm not a perfect person. In fact, I'm a spectacularly fucked-up person. And even though I'll never be perfect, I can sure as hell try to pump the breaks on some of my more destructive, life-ruining habits. In fact, I started yesterday. Come December 2018, what do you wish you had started in January? Write down like, two things.

And then there's the stuff we want to do

Fuck the idea that resolutions all have to be stuff like run the Boston marathon and put $50,000 in savings. Maybe it's fun stuff like discover new music online, explore your neighborhood more, take more selfies, buy more stuff covered in glitter. Resolutions aren't just about correcting the shitty aspects of yourself you hate. They can be about maximizing your fun and friendships and happiness and joy in the easiest ways. Maybe your resolution is to like, stay in and eat pizza more instead of going out. Who cares? Also, invite me over.

Also, just leave people alone

Who the fuck cares if someone wants to change? We're allowed to not like parts of ourselves. Hell, you're allowed to hate yourself. I definitely do sometimes. If we're out to better ourselves and want to jumpstart today, why not? And if you disagree, that's fine. One of my resolutions is to leave judgmental b-holes in 2017 anyway.

@itsamandaross

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