New _____, new me

Every new beginning feels like a fresh start. There’s a reason the gym is always packed in January. We see the new year as an opportunity to push the restart button on our lives and begin to live out the “New year, new me” motto.

It’s not just a new year that brings this mentality out in people. “I’ll start on Monday” is a popular mantra for most because Monday signals the start of a new week. New semesters, new jobs, new months, and even a new wardrobe can all spur on the attitude of changing some aspect of ourselves as a way to become better.

For me, starting a new semester of college always feels like an adventure. I have new classes with new professors and new faces and new expectations that I may or may not be ready for. Like most college students, I take a new semester as an opportunity to change my study habits.

“I’m going to do all of the readings.”

“I’m going to start papers and projects more than 2 days in advance.”

“I’m never going to skip class.”

We make these big resolutions with good intentions, but without a plan, they’re just empty promises we make to ourselves. If you really want to evoke change in this new year/week/semester, don’t just set a goal, but give yourself some realistic steps you can follow.

If your new year’s resolution or new semester goal is the adventure, then your plan is the map. Like most serious adventures, setting off without some sort of a map is a recipe for disaster. Going from point A to X marks the spot without a dotted line will leave you wandering aimlessly and hitting setbacks and dangers at almost every turn.

New beginnings are great. They give us the motivation to begin an adventure of change. Take whatever newness you’ve been given and use it as a springboard to accomplish what you set out to do. But don’t stop when the momentum gives out. Use that extra energy to make some concrete plans as well for how you’re going to live out #newyearnewme.

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