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5 New Year's Resolutions You Should Avoid in 2022

by Melanie Zammit

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2021 to 2022

The act of coming up with a new set of resolutions at the beginning of each year is, surprisingly, not a recent tradition. Far from this, it can be traced back to the ancient Romans who, in an effort to bring about self-improvement, habitually promised the god Janus (who January is named after) that they would, in the following twelve months, behave in such a way that would be significantly better than they had in the previous twelve. 

It must be said, however, that despite being the patron deity of fresh new beginnings, the god Janus also provided his worshipers with a rather convenient excuse. This is because, on the likely occurrence that they strayed from the path their resolutions had paved the way for, they could simply shrug off the mistake as being the will of the god. In this way, they could spend those 12 months much like they had during the previous 12: eating copious amounts of food, drinking numerous goblets of wine, and betting on a good deal of gladiator battles. 

If this all sounds a bit familiar, that is because it is. Many years later, contemporary individuals have taken on the same habits that the ancient Romans had adopted. Numerous studies have been conducted in the manner of new year's resolutions, all leading to the conclusion that fewer than half of resolvers actually end up sticking to their resolutions, and only 4% of those who do not make any resolutions at all manage to achieve success.

In order to aid you in your continual search for self-improvement this year, we have come up with a couple of suggestions, and a few generic resolutions to, perhaps, avoid during 2022:

1. Learning many new skills (Instead: Learn one new thing)

It is quite unrealistic to expect to learn many new skills in such a short amount of time, despite one's desire to hone said skills as quickly as humanly possible. We tend to lack the patience that learning new skills requires, and we also tend to give up on learning something new when we find that we do not immediately excel at it. This year, instead of setting as many goals for yourself as you possibly can, try to focus on honing one new skill and don't give up after the first few tries.

2. Stop procrastinating (Instead: Use your free time to relax and enjoy the moment)

It is quite useless to stress oneself over too much time spent procrastinating. While both extremes can be damaging, some procrastination is not completely bad. Taking the time to get away from your responsibilities and to focus on the moment can be beneficial both for your mental health and your general well being. Your existence is not meant to be spent stressing about not accomplishing everything that you had set yourself up to do, so enjoy your free time while you can, and set more realistic goals that you can accomplish each day.

3. Try to fulfil your old resolutions (Instead: Make new, more doable, ones)

Going back to the same old resolutions can be quite tedious and unrealistic. This year, try to come up with fewer resolutions than you had last year and focus on ones that are significantly more doable. Going back to the previous ones does not reflect the way you have grown as an individual, nor is it beneficial for your mental health to keep focusing on the same unrealistic expectations.

4. Accomplish all your fitness goals (Instead: Accomplish one fitness goal)

Instead of trying to achieve every single one of your fitness goals this year, focus on one fitness goal at a time, thus giving yourself a longer stretch of time to accomplish it. In this way, you are much less likely to fall off track on your resolution and far more likely to stick to your fitness goals in the long run. 

5. Keep track of your progress (Instead: Be less strict about your progress)

Try rewarding yourself for your achievements this year, rather than strictly keeping track of your progress. When straying off the path we had previously set out for ourselves, we tend to scrap the whole idea of new year's resolutions aside and tell ourselves to, instead, try again next year. This, however, doesn't always have to be the case. In 2022, whenever you will inevitably not be able to follow your resolutions religiously, try doing better the next day, and don't be so strict with yourself when you do.

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