This is because my resolution is NOT to make a New Year’s resolution.
Here’s my logic.
After two years of our freedoms being taken away due to the fear of Covid, the main thing we need now is positivity. As the old song goes, we need “to accentuate the positive”. Therefore the last thing I need is to spend the next three months in a doomed enterprise of self-improvement; the sort of failed mission that merely adds a little self-loathing to whatever problem I was vainly trying to solve.
During Covid, it has been so easy to list all the problems with the world. We watch as wealthy nations protect their own populations, ignoring the experts chanting on the sideline: “no one is safe unless everyone is safe.” We watch as as our brittle societal fault lines, underpinning our systems and institutions, further deteriorate. An under-funded health system, especially within mental health. Institutionalized racism. The cruelty of aged care. The dysfunctional labour market. The degradation of the public sector.
When you think of these things, you find yourself falling into a deep well of negativity. This is because most people focus on the things to worry about rather than those that make them happy. That doesn't make us bad or pessimistic people. It just makes us human. Noticing threats quickly was the key to our ancestors' survival. This continues today. The human brain is better at paying attention to what's bad rather than what's good. We therefore shouldn’t blame ourselves.
That’s why, this year, I plan to always climb towards the sunlight.