New Year’s Eve is tomorrow and we all know what that means: it’s time to reevaluate our lives and think about how we didn’t accomplish our 2016 New Year’s resolutions. If you were one of the few that actually succeeded in whatever you decided you would do last January, then congratulations. If you didn’t, that’s okay. I didn’t either.
I spent the last week trying to figure out what I wanted to make my resolution, but, in that time, I realized just how damaging a bad resolution can be. I think about how hard I am on myself for not accomplishing something trivial or something that is completely out of my hands. This year, I have compiled 7 resolutions that I won’t be making this year – and you shouldn’t either!
1 | Lose weight.
For many, this is the go-to resolution. Don’t get me wrong, wanting to develop healthier habits is a great thing, but your health is something you need to take into your own hands. No one should set unrealistic goals and expect to magically wake up skinny – which is what I always do. When that doesn’t happen – because that’s not how weight loss works – “people feel as though they’ve failed [and] they tend to throw in the towel for good,” Toby Amidor, a registered dietitian, explains. Instead of focusing on a realistic healthy lifestyle, people fall back into the same unhealthy choices they had the previous year. It’s a vicious cycle that always ends with an entire pizza, a lower self-esteem, and regret. Or maybe that’s just me. Regardless, I will not be making this mistake in 2017.
2 | Read more.
This can be a great resolution if you actually choose books that interest you. I, for one, love to read on the subway. The reason this is a bad resolution is because it is usually made with the goal of making you seem smarter or to impress the strangers that see you reading. By choosing something intelligent sounding that absolutely bores you to death, you’ll end up making yourself miserable. It will be like you’re back in school having to get through a chapter for an assignment and you’ll end up resenting a piece of literature that you may have otherwise loved.
3 | Cut out junk food.
It’s easy to say that you’re going to throw out all of the bad food and snacks that you own and only eat kale or whatever the 2017 super food will be, but that basically becomes torture after a few weeks. According to registered dietitian, Tanya Zuckerbrot, “Cutting out indulgences may initially help you lose weight, but over time it will make you feel deprived and ultimately lead to bingeing.” The last thing you want when trying to lose weight is to end up eating a carton of goldfish or a a family size bag of potato chips by yourself. If you’re determined to make your resolution about clean eating, then make sure that you allow yourself a treat now and again. I’m certainly going to be practicing balance this year.
4 | Get promoted at work.
This resolution is so far out of your hands that you shouldn’t even waste the time worrying about it. There are tips and tricks to getting closer to that promotion, but ultimately, it comes down to your boss and your company making the decision. Do what you can to better yourself at work, but don’t let it hurt your self-esteem if next December you find yourself in a similar position. I refuse to add more stress to myself by worrying about promotions.
5 | Lift weights every day.
Thirty minutes of cardio every day is beneficial for your health, but when you’re trying to push yourself with weights on a daily basis you can run into some trouble. I once made this resolution and I lasted just over a week before I could barely get out of bed. Regular exercise is important for a healthy lifestyle, but when you do strength training each day, you end up with sore muscles and can ultimately be put out of commission for a few weeks; especially if you’re not accustomed to a difficult daily regimen. This can end up setting your health and fitness goals back and make you regret your resolution decision. According to Gavin McHale, a kinesiologist and certified exercise physiologist, “as a general rule of thumb, you should shoot for hitting the weight room three days per week.” This is much more doable than every single day!
6 | Find “the one.”
With so many dating sites and friends getting engaged seemingly every weekend, it can be tempting to make your New Year’s resolution to be to find the person you’re going to marry. Don’t do it. Don’t spend 2017 desperately looking for the person you expect to spend the rest of your life with. It will stress you out and cause you to waste your year. While you’re busy on a bad first date with someone who sounded good on paper, you’ll be missing out on girls’ nights, movie nights, game nights, or even just a night to yourself, staying home and watching your guilty Netflix pleasure wearing your unsexy pajamas. Don’t get so caught up in skipping to the end of your love-life that you miss out on enjoying your single days.
7 | Drink less.
Girl, cheers. You survived 2016 and you’re going to thrive in 2017. Maybe don’t do three-martini lunches every day, but other than that, toast to you and your accomplishments!
So, with all of the not-so-good-for-me but go-to resolutions scratched off my list, what’s left? It took a little soul searching, but I finally decided on my 2017 New Year’s resolution:
Be as Badass as possible.
My resolution is to wake up every morning and be my best self. I will be happy. I will be healthy. I will be excited to experience what each day presents with me with – whether it be a challenge or a gift. I will take on 2017 with a smile and my typical snark. I invite you to do the same.
Happy New Year, my fellow Badasses!