New year partyChristmas was way too expensive. You didn’t save up enough money this year and things are going to be tight in January. Next year, you’ll be a bit more frugal, be prepared for this. But there are sales on already. You may as well take advantage of them now, wait until New Year to reboot your budgeting regime.

Oh, and you ate too much this Christmas. And you didn’t exercise enough last year. All that rich food has left you feeling … unwell. So you’ll start eating healthier now. Well, not now. But, after you’ve finished all the leftover turkey. And Christmas cake. And gift boxes of chocolate. Obviously.

And you drank too much, as well. But you’ve got some leftover wine. And you can’t not have a glass of champagne on New Years’ Eve. So that can wait a bit, too.

So those will be your New Years’ resolutions.

And you’ll quit smoking, be more organised, get more productive, and tidier, and more generous, and all the same stuff you say you’ll do every New Year.

Think about that for a second.

Why are you even bothering? How about make some resolutions that you’ll actually keep this year?

The reason you haven’t cut down on the burgers and booze yet is simply because you don’t want to. So why are you pretending you do? They taste nice – they make you feel good.

They make you happy.

And, face it, if you can still run for a bus and aren’t so hungover so often that you can’t handle a day job, you’re probably fine anyway.

These are boring, generic resolutions that people make for no good reason. They feel that they have to. They don’t get kept because no one really cares enough about them.

Instead, this time, think about what you didn’t enjoy in the year just gone. And then make resolutions that will change that.

Resolve to make more time for your friends. To go for the promotion you always wanted. To take up roller blading. Or painting. Or ballroom dancing. To write that novel you’ve been secretly planning for the past decade. To take up a musical instrument.

If you really are serious about the usual things, then be specific about how you’re going to do it. Don’t just resolve to lose some weight. Resolve to ride your bike to work, or to try some healthier recipes, or to jog at least once a week. Give yourself a precise direction, and you’ll do fine.

Make your resolutions this year work for you.

Happy New Year.

Kirstie Summers,

Daily Zen.