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Quit making New Year resolutions

Ceri Theobald, Director of Strategic Partnerships & Growth
10 January 2022

As we all stagger, bleary-eyed but hopefully energised into 2022 after the annual festive shut-down I had a thought – “What if every day was like New Year’s Day?” 

Every year, regular as clockwork, the Christmas celebrations have barely ended before we’re being told it’s time to buy new furniture, book a holiday, get fit, go on a diet and basically change our entire lives for the better. Even if we’re not guilty ourselves, we all know someone who has started a new year with stacks of virtuous resolutions that fall by the wayside before we even get to the end of January. That’s not really surprising given that humans are by nature creatures of habit and that change can be a challenge for all of us. 

As someone who would admit to being a bit of a ‘change junkie’ I think maybe the best new year’s resolution to make would be to commit to keep changing. Not with the grand gestures that the media and online influencers might promote but with small, sustainable changes that are fundamentally true to ourselves and internally-driven, rather than trying to live up to someone else’s idea of who and what we should be.  

If you believe in where you need to get to and take small but persistent steps to get there you are far more likely to succeed. By all means take soundings from others as you go – but to calibrate rather than validate. 

In my role at Futures I’m responsible for leading some big and important changes. We have a huge amount to do to improve our sustainability. We want to forge vital and progressive new partnerships with those in our region who share our vision of better tomorrows. And after two hugely disruptive years due to the pandemic the signs are that, even as we start to live with the virus, things are never going to be quite the same with economic turbulence that is going to have a big impact on our customers and so much of the work we do. Towards the end of 2021 some of this felt quite daunting – there’s a lot to do and the path ahead isn’t always clear.  

I feel energised after the Christmas break though so I’m keen to crack on with moving us forward. Sometimes all it takes is a bit of time-out to help you change your point of view and start to see things you previously thought were problems as opportunities instead. Maintaining your energy to drive forward takes commitment but the rewards are worthwhile. So while making new year’s resolutions is tempting, I think it’s more productive to hold onto some of that ‘fresh start’ vibe every day instead.  

My advice to you if you’re thinking how to get the best out of 2022 would be to ignore the unrealistic ideals that others may shout about and focus on consistent, small changes that work for you. Take time to reflect and reward yourself along the way to make sure you stay on track. And maybe then instead of starting the year with huge plans that are likely to fail, you can end 2022 by looking back and saying “Wow, look what I did”. 

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