New Year's Resolution: Playing By My Own Rules

by Nicole
December 23, 2013

Does writing down your resolutions make them any more motivating? For me, it has the opposite effect because there they sit, on paper, staring at me. Kind of like the to-do lists I write daily. Here’s the thing about resolutions though: you can make them anytime. January through December is fair game to make a change. And yet we go through the year, waiting for the ball to drop on New Year’s to do anything about them. So this year, I resolve to not resolve, and to just do.

My list of things I want to accomplish (everything from the generic “exercise more!” to “write better”) is longer than Rihanna’s nails on a good day. But I’m a very goal-oriented person, so unless I set specific goals they just hang out there in not so near future, nowhere within reach. I would say I’m focused, but my focus is more of a locomotive drive than say, laser-focus. I have the will to get things done but lack the discipline to do it. I sit down in front of the computer with every will to be productive, then find that hours have passed browsing Instagram or vegan etsy shops. Maybe it’s a result of growing up in an era when having 4 browser windows and 21 tabs open, listening to music and simultaneously carrying on a text conversation is completely normal.

individuality by jonathan phillipsWell, I’m here to say that I don’t think it’s normal and I want to live my life stress-free and as productive as possible. Free of unnecessary distractions and time wasters. Free of toxic people and unpleasant situations. After all, it’s my life and I can cry, sing, dance and feel how I want to.

So, on productivity: I honestly believe if we focus on ourselves more than on others, we all could do a whole lot, well, more. Both our work and relationships could be more passionate and clear. Instead of perusing Instagram which incites jealously as soon as you see that one girl with the designer wardrobe while you shop at Kmart, forgo the social media and fill your life with positive thoughts and things to be thankful for. Don’t get wistful seeing other couple’s relationships on Facebook (they’re dating! they’re engaged! they’re married!) and fall in love with your significant other sitting across from you–or if you’re single, perhaps even with your own beautiful, sexy, amazing self.

Above all, don’t waste any more time on comparing yourself to others, or judging your life by anyone else’s standard except your own. These past few weeks have been full of amazing things for me, which have confirmed my suspicions that feeling accomplished or happy isn’t measured by anyone other than yourself.

When you’re arrive at a state free of distraction or anxiety, think about what you truly want to accomplish. You can do anything with a fabulous support system in place, love and encouragement. Don’t fall off the wagon because of a minor hiccup and never, ever lose faith. Play by your rules!

I was never one for pep talks–but here’s my parting advice: If you believe you can do it then you can, so enjoy 2014 to the fullest if only for no one but yourself.

Also by Nicole: #Selfie culture and the Perfect Woman

Organized Life: How to Clean Up Your Computer


Photo: Jonathan Phillips via Flickr

Contributor Nicole is a native New Yorker and vegan. Often seen giving unsolicited shopping advice to strangers, she also loves seeing Broadway shows and spending time in parks. When Nicole isn't chewing someone's ear off, she can be found building online businesses for solopreneurs as 10 Carat Creations.


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