Resolutions, reflections, goals, motivation, inspiration and so much more. The new year always seems to bring hope for a fresh start. We want to climb higher, earn more, get fitter, chill harder, all whilst feeling more alive. But do we actually end up changing as individuals or not?
At the start of every year, I read back on my journal entries from the previous months leading up to the start of the previous year. I often find trends, as I probably don’t change all that much from the core of who I am. That led me to an astounding new resolution, why don’t I just stay the same person?
Don’t get me wrong, I am a sound believer of the growth mindset as you may already know. The point here isn’t to stick to the same bad habits or continue being an a-hole. But it’s not about going to the gym more or eating more carrots either. It’s to look down at my guiding principles and values, and see where that has led me over the past few years.
So where has it all led me? To where I am today.
I’d like to use the first post of the year to look back at how I’ve been the same person over the past couple of years, but just with different habits. Maybe that will help ring something in you too, who knows.
I thought about this after realizing that no matter what it is that I do, I always want to win. I’ve learned to become comfortable with losing, as long as I’ve given it my best shot. Since my pre-school days, I can remember feeling that competitive edge when it came to literally anything.
So when I look into the new year, it’s something that I accept as part of who I am and try to fit in some goals to help me with that attribute. I use my competitive nature to always try to develop new skills and stay up to date with other friends (in similar fields or industries).
Another common theme year-on-year is my eagerness to adventure and try out new activities. This is because I love leaving my comfort zone and experimenting. As part of that, I strive to do something unique every year (if circumstances allow).
It can sometimes be a bad thing because I then itch if I’m sitting still for too long (literally and metaphorically). So even if it’s just trying out a new meal or a new exercise regime, I still include some aspect of novelty in my life.
A little impatient
Despite my constant struggle to be patient, I often find myself rushing people or getting annoyed when plans change too often. It generally results in other people getting annoyed/frustrated at me, which just drives the cycle.
Every year, I try to take it a little easy and stay calm when things don’t go my way. But I just haven’t found the right habits yet to keep me as patient as I’d like to be.
That’s one of the other reasons why I thought of the ‘New year, same me’ concept. Because deep down, we have to put in a lot more effort than we think, to genuinely make progress on ourselves. That brings me to the last point; that I always strive to be driven by values.
Strive to be driven by values
I have some core values in theory and I have some core values in practice. What I’ve noticed over time is that they’re not always aligned. There are parts of me that just take longer to accept the values that I’d like to have.
The one sphere that I particularly want to pay more attention to is that of religion. Being a Muslim comes first and foremost to me, which is where my values come from in the first place. It’s a struggle every year to keep up with the principles and deepen my Islamic knowledge base.
What I’d like to end this post by saying is that a new year factually means that we’re getting closer to our death. This should humble us and inspire us to improve on all facets of our life. We’re here for a specific purpose, and it’s up to us to ensure that we strive towards it.
Be more mindful. Be more present. Have deeper and tougher conversations. Give out more charity. Perform more acts of kindness. Pray more, for yourself and for those you love. Go out on more adventures. Spend less time on your devices and more time connecting with people. Keep up the great work. You got this.