Long before the holiday decorations are put away and the ball in Times Square actually drops, we are bombarded by the pressure associated with January 1. Gyms, clothing stores, and food companies start pitching the “New You” for the New Year.
I’m all about personal growth. Open my podcast feed or my e-Reader and you’ll see every personal development guru you can imagine from Rachel Hollis to The Minimalists. I have a running list of goals and write to-do lists every day. But the older I’ve gotten and the more honest I’m learning to be with myself, I’m beginning to think that January isn’t the best time for me to develop new (or break old) habits. Instead, it’s a good time for me to slow down.
Animals are hibernating. Plants and flowers are dormant. It just feels more natural to me to slowly get back into the swing of things, following holiday-related interruptions in routine, before embarking on life-changing pursuits.
If January inspires you to work toward a “New You,” I will be your biggest cheerleader. But if, like me, you need to hibernate for a while, remember that January 1 is a day on the calendar. You can pick ANY day to start a “New Year, New You.” As a wise friend of mine posted on Facebook the other day, a year is defined as 365 days. You can start whenever you’re ready.
For me, fall is a more natural fresh slate. Maybe it’s the school calendar being ingrained, or the fact that I observe the Jewish New Year (Rosh HaShanah), or maybe it’s the crisp air that puts a pep in my step. Maybe for you it’s the spring, when nature is blooming and everything around us is new.
Ultimately, it’s about being better today than we were yesterday, no matter what day it is on the calendar.