the new year hype

I might be a bit late, but each day, I’m reminded that it is a new year. Whether it’s people talking about losing weight or dieting, everyone seems to be letting me know how they’re planning to make a change this year. New Years has always been my second-favorite holiday, after Thanksgiving of course. Just like Thanksgiving, I love New Years because of the happiness that the holiday seems to bring everyone. Everyone is happy on Thanksgiving because of food and family. Everyone is happy on New Years because of hope.

Food. Family. Hope.

I think these are 3 things that every human being needs to survive. So what is it about new years that gets everyone so crazy and disgustingly, blindly optimistic?

I never got into the actual “new years hype”. When I say this, I mean the whole “new year, new me” or “new years resolutions”. None of these ever made sense to me. Why keep repeating the same bad habits, thinking the same negative thoughts, maintaining the bad/unhealthy relationships, etc. until 11:59pm on Dec. 31st and then think that when you wake up Jan. 1st (at some odd-hour in the afternoon, hungover), that your life is suddenly going to magically and instantly change? Like the magical world of Harry Potter. What motivation will be inside of you Jan. 1st that you didn’t have on Dec. 31st? As a child, most of my New Year’s Eves were spent with my family watching the ball drop. We’d celebrate, hoot and holler, and then we would all pray together. Sometime during the day on Jan.1st, my parents would cook black-eyed peas for New Years luck  (most Nigerians, and others in general, do this). A simple way to bring in the New Year.

I cannot express the disgust broiling inside of me as I scrolled down my Facebook newsfeed on Dec. 31st and Jan. 1st. My news feed was ridden with “new year, new me”, “2011 sucked! bring it on 2012”, “my new years resolution is to [insert resolution here]!”, “this year is gonna be my year!” So what does this all mean? If your whole Jan. 2nd goes terribly wrong, do you just give up and suddenly say “this year is terrible, I can’t wait until next year”? Yadda yadda.  Did it take you a whole year to realize the things about yourself  that you need to change? Maybe you have failed on your “resolutions” because you keep doing the same things again and socializing with the same people, but are expecting different results. Congratulations, you’re practicing insanity. Look it up.

In my opinion, each year has its ups and downs. In 2011, you may have had: family members that have passed away, a job that you didn’t get, a relationship that has failed, a school you didn’t get into, a friendship that fell apart, classes that you’ve failed, etc. But on the flip side, you may have: graduated from college, been accepted to your dream school, got engaged, bought that new car, gotten a promotion, been offered a job, etc.
The point is, is that you’re alive. You were/are able to experience all of these things. What people fail to realize is that majority of their consequences are caused by their actions. Did you experience a really bad breakup this past year? I’m sorry. Now great, take time to heal and use it as a blessing in disguise. Get to know yourself, find new hobbies, make new friends, spend more time with your family.

In summary:
The world is not out to get you. You don’t need to wait until the new year to start changing. Learn from last year and make internal changes, which will eventually become external. There is no need to broadcast your resolutions to the world.

Here’s hoping that we all live to see 2013.