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Monday, May 27, 2024

Commentary: Why you don’t need to wait for the New Year to change your life

Use your ever-growing nature for self-improvement throughout the year, not just in January  


By RUMA POUDELL — arts@theaggie.org


The New Year has started and a new chapter has begun to unfold for all of us. It’s that time for setting and following through with New Year’s resolutions. While New Year’s resolutions are a great way to bring about change in your life, remember that as the year goes on, the opportunity to facilitate growth is always available to you.

When people set their New Year’s resolutions, it usually goes a couple of ways: they lose commitment within two weeks, quit altogether or see results by maintaining intention. If you’ve already folded on your goals, don’t quit. And if you haven’t set any goals yet, set them now.

Whether it’s over the course of a year, a month, weeks, a day or mere moments, we are constantly transforming in some kind of way. Your hair is ever-so-slightly growing. Your layers of skin are rebuilding themselves. Your height may still be increasing. Changes are occurring right before your eyes even if you can’t see it — and those are just physical attributes. 

Now, think of when you were six years old. You were, without a doubt, a completely different person. Every interaction, every thought and every action you have is playing a part in who you become tomorrow, whether it has a big bang or the smallest ripple effect. 

Transformation is constantly underway, so how much of an agent of change do you want to be? In order to make actual progress toward your goals, set small intentions monthly, weekly or even daily if you have to.

Depending on the types of goals you have, it’ll take different amounts of time and resources to accomplish. Write down what it takes to accomplish your goals and what you will do to ensure that you meet them. The second part is key — that is what you will have to focus on to elicit progress. 

Another thing to keep in mind is consistency. Even if you find that you are not seeing progress, continue putting in effort and you will see the fruits of your labor in one way or another. 

Let’s say your goal is to go to the gym consistently. Missing two weeks of gym sessions won’t diminish all of your progress. But will you get back to work, or will you stop going entirely because of those two missed weeks? Or even if you miss gym sessions for a longer period of time and do see your gains regress, are you going to stop altogether or are you going to work for them to come back?  It’s more effective to consistently take active action toward your own improvement throughout the year than only at the start of it.

One lesson we were taught in school was to never give up. That can apply to goals too.

When growing a seed, you have to first put it into the soil and water it for days before you even see it sprout. And once the sprout has sprung up, it is only with consistent soil, sun and water that it will continue to grow and eventually reap nectar. 

Setting forth on the journey to conscious self-improvement can be daunting when your dreams are large. But just as the snake’s skin sheds, the flower blooms and the caterpillar becomes a butterfly, you too will grow and transform. Transformation is inevitable.


Written by: Ruma Poudell — arts@theaggie.org