Resolutions for 2017
Every 365 days, we force a time to reflect on our lives and examine ways we can improve ourselves. Though people make fun of this tradition for never being held for all of the following 365 days, I want to put my goals for myself here to (try to) hold myself accountable.
1. Stop overthinking.
If 2016 has taught me anything, it’s that I overthink and that’s a bad thing. This is especially true for relationships and romantic interests. It also manifests itself in the duration of my writing – it takes me embarrassingly long to craft a good blog post on here as well as a report at work. This was also true for writing emails – I would backtrack, re-read, and re-edit until I was satisficed – although that, with practice, is less of a problem now.
I need to recognize when I am overthinking, and replace it with other thoughts or distract myself with activity. Something else that would help is asking yourself “will this matter in a year? Five years?”. Unless the answer is yes, there’s no point thinking it through.
2. Stop checking your phone/social media so often.
I’m addicted. It used to be just Twitter, but now it’s mostly messages. It’s an impulse that’s destructive to my productivity as well as my mental health. It’s certainly related to FOMO and not wanting to keep people waiting, but really… if it’s important, they’ll get to me by calling or by texting directly to my phone.
I need to put my phone on silent and out of sight (/out of mind). Every time I get the urge to check my phone, I should replace the urge with something else – perhaps take a deep breath or sip of water instead. Taking a page from the previous resolution, I also need to remind myself that unless they’re trying to call you or text you directly, it probably doesn’t really matter.
3. Listen to your body.
My lips are chapped and my hands are dry, especially in the winter. My face has recently started breaking out and I don’t know why (perhaps it’s stress-related. I’ve never had this issue before summer 2016). Sometimes I’ll also over-eat and snack mindlessly. Whereas I’d get sick at most twice a year before, I’ve fallen sick at least four times this year, twice within the past three months. My sleeping habits have gotten out of hand – I had the excuse of “being productive” by not being distracted at night and having the “luxury” of being unemployed before, but I can’t ignore the changes in my body any longer.
These are all indicators of bad habits and I need to start listening before anything gets worse. I need to take better care of myself – eat healthier, drink more fluids, moisturize. Sleep earlier (by midnight) and not have my phone recharging by my bedside.
4. Put in more effort with your family.
Until my friends lamented on the rejection their families place on their queerness, I never realized how lucky I am to have an (Asian) family that accepts their gay daughter/sister. It really hit home during this conversation with my mom:
It was hard at the beginning but since coming out, I’ve gotten a lot closer with my family. My brother is also incredible and I don’t give him enough credit for how much 1.) patience he has with our mom and 2.) effort he puts into keeping the family together. He’ll sacrifice time from his friends and his own time regardless of what is at stake, to keep me and my mom happy. It’s ridiculous and almost saddening. I put less than a fraction of the effort he puts in and it’s not fair. I need to try harder and take my family off the back burner.
5. Be more in touch with and more fearless with my emotions
It’s almost with pride when I tell people that I’m emotionally constipated. While true, the pride stems more from my self-awareness – that I actually know myself well enough to diagnose this – and not from being emotionally constipated. But it has to stop. It’s not healthy – and it’s a wonder I haven’t targeted earlier. The badge is more a to-address item and I need to not bottle up my emotions anymore – whether out of fear or not expressing them all my life, I need to be better at expressing myself.
I put love on a pedestal. I don’t use words lightly and “love” in particular, I reserve. The concept of love, I guard and use stingily. What I need to do is not be so guarded with it – because something is valuable does not mean it cannot be shared with the world. It’s precious, but you cannot cage love and expect it to thrive in the dark. I need to be more open about my feelings, allow myself to be vulnerable – not for the sake of being vulnerable, but more so for the sake of allowing myself to fall in love.
Yeah, I want to fall in love this year. I know it’ll be a delicate balance not being desperate to be with someone while trying to find someone – I don’t want a domestic partnership, I want someone I absolutely love. I don’t think it’s too much to ask. I’ll put myself out there.
6. Spend more time outside my head
Aside from taking a break from the sometimes-tumultuous havoc in my head, I’d like to be more present and take in more of where I am, what I am feeling, the outside. I need to do this.
Take deep breaths. Pause. No music, no nothing. Just take in where you are, how you’re feeling, everything outside of your mind – take it in.
I’ve set a reminder on my Google calendar every month to check-in. These things are so important to my physical and mental health and honestly… it’d be to my own destruction if I don’t abide by them.
Here’s to 2017.