Lots of people are beginning to think up their New Years Resolutions at the moment. And while it’s admirable that people are trying to make a conscientious effort to change themselves as we ‘start afresh’ in 2015, it’s not something that I can fathom the energy to properly do. I simply can’t be arsed.
Don’t get me wrong, year after year, I have tried and failed at this whole resolutions thing. But at the age of 19, I am still no closer to cutting the habit of biting my nails when I’m stressed or bored; I am still utterly incapable of waking up at a sensible time if “there’s nothing really going on” in a day; My efforts to write a diary have always failed by around the 3rd of January every year I try; This whole procrastination lark of leaving work til the last minute in favour of doing basically nothing has just become an inbuilt part of my personality it would now seem; And let’s not even bother trying to dignify my “efforts” at doing actual exercise, like I said I would back in 2012.
I’m just not a person that embraces change well. I’ve never liked it – change makes me anxious. It’s not something you can ever really gear yourself up for – despite this bizarre annual tradition we have which encourages people to prepare themselves for such new alterations to their lives. I just don’t understand why we keep doing it. We’re gearing ourselves up to fail because we hold such high expectations for the person we’ll be in 2015 – even though the 2015 ‘us’ is only a few days from coming into being. And 2014 ‘us’ is still quite happy sitting lazily in the habits that the 2015 ‘us’ is so definitely going to stop. It’s just a weird thing.
I’m not making resolutions for myself as such. I don’t want to have to disappoint myself by the end of January with a list of my own self-invented failures. Because I know that I am inevitably going to argue with my brother at some point in the year – I doubt that he’ll have stopped being a dickhead in 2015. And I know that even though I’d like to be a bit slimmer, I’m never really going to wake up everyday at 6am to jog. Nor am I going to realistically be able to “get away from the computer more” – not if I want to be a proper writer anyway. I mean, it’s like 2013 me wasn’t even thinking this through.
I’d much rather appreciate what little things I did manage to do in this past year, than to lament obsessively over the mistakes I made in an effort to correct them in the new year. This need for perfectionism can’t be healthy. Yes, I’ve been an awful student this year – I’ve left things to the last minute, I’ve not read the books I was meant to properly, and I’ve not ‘engaged with people socially’ enough as the 2013 resolution-writing me had intended. But I did manage to brave my first day quite well – I’ve made a few friends, I got a half-decent grade on my first Film essay, and I can now successfully navigate my way around the campuses. So that’s good right?
And family’s tough too. Arguments are inevitable in a house that occupies a 19 year old student, a 15 year old in his emo stages, a 1 and a half year old infant in his just-about-to-talk stages and a 42 year old mum trying to keep it all together. But there is still some positivity to be gleamed from the year at home. I’ve gotten better with my baby brother – despite really not being a baby-person. He’s alright – we get on, and I’m teaching him well. (He can say ‘bugger’ – which probably isn’t a conventional first word, but I find it amusing) The other brother and me are never going to see eye to eye, but there have been a few rare moments where we’ve not been too bad – we worked together relatively harmoniously on our Halloween pumpkin, at least. And me and my Mum have been a pretty good team.
I’ve also stopped using tumblr as much – which was arguably a problem last year that I wanted to rectify. I do sometimes miss it. But, like Simon Pegg with twitter, it was becoming more of a chore than a hobby to me, and I’m glad that the obsession I had with it has finally died down. I can’t say I’m any more productive, but at least I’m not stressing over the exact order of reblogging posts anymore. That shit is not fun – it’s just neurotic. And I’m really getting a handle on this writing business. I mean, yeah I should probably start giving more attention to this blog in the new year – and without making it a resolution, I will try to – but at least this is a start. And my work over at The Indiependent and The Edge is really beginning to develop too.
So this year hasn’t been a complete failure. And I’m sure next year won’t be either. We’re all human, we make mistakes – we cannot be perfect, no matter how much we might wish to be. I’m not going to make promises to myself that I know I can’t keep or control. I might still write a list – but it’s not going to be a long scroll of Do’s and Don’t’s. It’s probably going to be more like a bucket list for the year – comprised of my desire to do things that are not serious, but are still prevalent to me. Like properly watching The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit trilogies all in one go, in order. Or finally getting around to watching Breaking Bad and reading the Sherlock Holmes stories properly. Those are the sorts of resolutions I’d like to make to myself. Not ones that change my habits or try desperately to make me a different person to the one that I already am. But ones that expand on my interests and bring me a moment of joy rather than a year full of self-inflicted stress.