Health and Wellness |

A New Years perspective

January 4, 2021
woman on lounge sunlight

For the longest time we have reached the end of the year with goals, promises and big expectations as we move into the New Year. Reflecting on the year that was, we can certainly say that it hardly lived up to anybody’s great expectations. Many of us will be glad to see the back of 2020 but are also aware of the challenges that will carry over with the ongoing uncertainty of the pandemic. What if when the clock strikes midnight on December 31, we shifted our perspective and go into the New Year with a gentle approach to what we can achieve?  

Traditionally, many like to view the New Year as a “fresh start” however if 2020 has taught us anything, it’s that goals are hard to set at the best of times but are even harder in times of uncertainty and stress. So, let’s look to the New Year and take the pressure off and set smaller, more considerate and achievable goals. 

Feeling hopeful

“There is still good reason to have hope and optimism for the future, even if that feels a little hard right now”, says Professor Brock Bastian from Melbourne University’s School of Psychological Sciences. “The need for hope has never been greater given we have these challenges. Overcoming challenges is harder if we don’t feel hopeful,” said Professor Bastian. 

Switching gears 

Focus on moving into the New Year with the goal to connect with others and engage in more fulfilling activities rather than personal achievements. This means working on more modest goals as we will be more likely to achieve them as well as the satisfaction that comes with that.  

Revisiting the year that was and revisiting what did go well is a great start. Did you prepare more home cooked or nutritious meals? Daily walks? Connecting with neighbours? Learning new technologies? Hold onto your good habits developed through the pandemic and carry these over to the New Year. 

Tips for 2021 goal setting

Whilst setting grand goals in the New Year can be exciting, in theory smaller, realistic and achievable goals are always a good idea. It’s about breaking down ambitious goals into smaller bite-sized components.  

Try this:
  • Work out what you want to change (or keep)
  • Work out why you want to change (or keep) it to tap into your underlaying motivation
  • Make a plan of action (and keep it simple) 

If you’re like many people this year and not interested in setting a New Year goal then take some time to prepare yourself for the year ahead. Think about how you want to support yourself – connect with people, make an effort to touch base with friends and family and surround yourself with the right support. 

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