New Year 2021: It’s Ok to Not Have a Resolution

by Dec 31, 2020

Well, it’s the new year again.  Happy New Year, everyone!  2020 was something, right?  Now, what can I, a blogger with no knowledge of what this year has done to you, suggest you do to make 2021 an even greater year?

For starters, I’m not doing any cliche “Best New Years Resolution Ideas”, or “Tips for Keeping Your Resolution”, or “Stop Leaving an Imprint on the Couch and Ride a Bike Instead” articles.  I mean, if you truly want to have a resolution, that’s good and I wish you the best!  But my guess is that plenty of us, myself included, really don’t want to be encouraged to make changes that are somewhat impossible right now.  Spend more time with your relatives, hit the gym more often, travel the world… all reminders of things we could have New Years Resolved when things were normal.

At the same time though, I don’t want this blog to be wholly cynical and devoid of optimism.  It’s easy to overanalyze your past year’s shortcomings — pandemic or no pandemic.  You know all those very human things you did this year, such as eating too many onion rings or forgetting to read a book, that you swear you’ll change January 1st?  They overshadow all the fruitful things that took place this year and throw your guilt out of proportion.  Future tripping can set us up for defeat in the budding year, considering 95% of us quit our New Year’s Resolution by the end of January.  Yes, I completely made up that statistic, but it’s likely accurate.

Though eating fewer fries and reading more books is obviously good for you, there’s something we often forget to do this time of year that’s just as valuable.  It’s that thing I briefly brought up a few sentences ago, and that would be the shrouded positives we had this past year.  2020 has been a particularly rough one, to brutally understate it.  But still, how about instead of putting all your focus on what needs to change in 2021, we appreciate what happened in the twelve months we just experienced?  However few positives there were, just think about them.  

Maybe you saw the value of the simplest of things, like opening your front door to greet the food delivery guy instead of waiting for him to drop the bag at the doorstep and scram.  Or, maybe you liked that you didn’t have to open the door to look at the delivery guy because you’ve never been a people person.  Did you make any life changing decisions, like applying to an online masters program, that you wouldn’t have otherwise thought of if not for the quarantine?  Or while socially isolated, did you save a life by adopting a homeless pet?

I’m not bringing up these ideas to minimize the seriousness of the year’s hardships.  Many lost loved ones.  Many can’t go to work.  And some have strained relationships with others, due to clashing ideas on the best course of action right now.  All of that said, we did the best we could, and that alone is worth appreciating.

Next year, when this ordeal is expectedly over, maybe try to look back on 2021 the same way.  Set aside your perceived flaws and redirect your focus.  A shift toward “What went right this year and how does that make me feel?” and step back from “What went down the gutter this year and needs to be pulled out with my bare hands?” might do us all a service.  It’s worth a try.  Regardless, let’s hope for the best this new year and support each other along the way.

Sincerely, happy new year.  Be happy, healthy, and safe this 2021.

Katrina Jenkins

Katrina Jenkins

Author, Licensed Massage Therapist

Katrina Jenkins graduated from Towson University in 2013 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Health Science and worked as a nurse’s aide briefly before pursuing her true passion. She graduated from the Massage Therapy Institute of Colorado in April 2016 with honors and completed the Touch of Healers Scholarship Program the following summer. She has been a part of the Moyer Total Wellness Team since the summer of 2017.

Photo Credit: Canva by Eugenia Shulim

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