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Why the New Year Doesn’t Refresh Me but Exhausts Me

Why the New Year Doesn’t Refresh Me but F*cking Exhausts Me

What is more daunting than thinking there is an entire 12 months ahead of you, filled with with triumphs and personal wins you're yet to discover, along with hard work and challenges you're yet to encounter? For me, not much.

When a new year rolls around, typically, I'm (secretly) overwhelmed, probably ill, anxiety-ridden, freezing cold because I truly do not blossom in the Winter (it's hard to feel energised when it's always dark out), and full of goals that feel ridiculous when I can barely think a week ahead without feeling totally exhausted.

I'm a firm believer in goals, and because the goals I set myself are achievable and I truly put the work in, I tend to accomplish them. I'm generally very motivated and continuously push myself to be a better person, but there is something about setting these goals as soon as a new year begins that feels all too much. I don't spring into work ready for new challenges after a "refreshing break", even though I've had quality time with friends and family I've truly enjoyed and cherished. I'm more likely to slug into work wondering how I'm possibly going to go about making a positive change for myself — and the world around me — in the year ahead.

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Although it might feel overwhelming, I still believe that for me, making resolutions for the year ahead is important because I'm a goal-oriented person, but I've come to ask myself, so what if I put them on the back burner until April? As long as it's not detrimental to myself or my progress, I've found that setting intentions can sometimes be just as effective as achieving them.

If you want to make resolutions, great. If you don't, then don't. If you want to do dry January, great. If you don't, then drink all the wine you want. And if you don't feel like reinventing yourself as soon as a new year comes around, then just don't do it. There's no rule that says Jan. 1 is the only time you can start fresh.

Should you find yourself in a similar situation, stop putting so much pressure on yourself. Whether you, too, expect yourself to be on it with meal planning, having endless motivation at work from Jan. 2 onward, getting back into exercising, maintaining relationships and a good social life, as well as keeping on top of your health (which should be at the beginning of this list, perhaps it says a lot that it's at the end), give your little old self a break. While it's great for those that feel refreshed in the new year, I just find myself feeling f*cking exhausted, and that's OK.

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