December 31st. A day that marks the end of the old year and the preamble to the new one just beyond the midnight bells.
A time when, traditionally, we make vows and resolutions to be “new” us in the next 12 months. You know the drill:
- lose weight,
- stop smoking/drinking,
- eat less junk food,
- work out more.
All good goals. All good things to try and do, regardless of the time of year.
But to say “this will be the new me” says the old, or existing, you is no longer relevant and out-of-date.
And that’s bullshit.
We get suckered into believing we need to be “a new us” in order to be the us we’re meant to be.
Like having a smaller waist, or a bigger bicep, will suddenly make the things that are “wrong” with us go away.
And it’s still bullshit.
Because, in truth, why should they go away in the first place?
Our flaws. Our faults. Our broken promises. Our failures.
Every one of them is who we are. Every one of them is what we use to do better.
To be better.
To live better.
If we don’t have our flaws, we don’t have measuring sticks on how far we’ve come.
And, unless we want to stagnate breathing the same air forever, we need to know where we’ve been to see how far we still need to go.
So, forget the “new me” mantra. Go with something that’s real.
Something that’s you.
By all means, improve you. Grow you. Revisit you. Remould you.
But don’t lose the quintessential you by chasing something that’s neither shiny or new when the light of the new sun breaks in 2016.
It’s a sales push by marketers and retailers and corporations who tell you, “The old you sucks, and you suck for accepting it.”
But they don’t know the first thing about you. Fuck ‘em, and all their lies.
You’re just fine the way you are. You just need to work on realizing that.
Here’s to you and your wonderful, imperfect self in 2016.
A version of this post originally appeared here.