Dickerson Oxton - January 2020

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JAN. 2020

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MY PROBLEMWITH NEWYEAR’S RESOLUTIONS

To be completely honest, New Year’s resolutions just aren’t my thing. I’ve never really done them, but judging by how often we hear about these annual goals being abandoned by February, I don’t feel like I’m missing much. This isn’t to discourage people trying to make a positive change in their life — I just feel like there are better ways to go about making that happen. arbitrary. Making a goal for yourself out of a sense of tradition may seem motivating when the calendar has just renewed itself, but that feeling of “a new beginning” won’t last you the whole year. Rather than tying major life changes to an otherwise insignificant date, why not connect them to something important to you? That’s what I’ve found works best for me, at least. For example, last year, Tom and I watched “The Game Changers” documentary on Netflix — which highlights the benefits of a plant-based diet for athletes — and decided we wanted to have a healthier diet ourselves. Rather than cut off meat entirely, or adopt one of those fad diets out there, I just began writing down what I ate every day. I wasn’t counting calories, but I was forcing myself to think about what I was choosing to put in my The problem with New Year’s resolutions is that they’re too

body. Seeing my eating habits on paper was a great way to hold myself accountable. Of course, a little help never hurts. Tom and I decided to get a meal planning service which makes preparing healthy dishes fool-proof. It’s hard enough to eat right as it is — if we had to go out and find all the fresh ingredients, and learn how to cook with them from scratch, well, we’d be reverting back to mac n’ cheese pretty quickly. Removing as many hurdles between you and your goal goes a long way toward finding success. "Find a goal that really andtruly excites you, and every step you take toward itwill feel like a victory." For example, we keep weights and a few fitness machines in our basement. That way, we don’t have to worry about driving to and from the gym in the midst of our busy work schedules and taking care of the kids. The more you can fit a change into your daily life, with as little disruption as possible, the better it will stick. Ultimatley, it all comes back to my original point: You have to want it. I think we often make the mistake of

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setting goals around what we think we should want, based on the ideals of those around us. But, if you’re striving for something that, deep down, you don’t have any interest in, you’re either going to abandon it — or worse — be miserable doing it. There are innumerable ways we can better ourselves, so don’t let outside pressures pigeonhole your resolutions. Find a goal that really and truly excites you, and every step you take toward it will feel like a victory. For all I’ve said against them, I’ll admit there is one strength to New Year’s resolutions: that feeling of a fresh start. It’s not strong enough to last through to December, sure, but it can be a great way to kickstart change. So, if you have to make a resolution, let it just be to make this year better than the last. How you choose to do it is up to you.

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Happy New Year,

–Chelsea Dickerson

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