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STARR INSIGHTS: New year, new me – A guide to navigating the January minefield

By Scott Richardson

Welcome to 2018, everyone!

No sooner are backsides nestled back into their familiar office chair domiciles before all thought of Christmas, New Year and any associated trips away or breaks are forgotten and it’s back to the grind. Gym memberships are compared, diets approved and critiqued, and eyes are set, avec blinkers, firmly towards the future and all the hard work and dedication that come with a new year and (therein) a new you.

Are we too harsh on ourselves, though? What has really changed since December except a few days of over-indulgence and a gentle reminder that family is great in small doses? Can we really expect a brand-new approach to life just because the clock ticked past 12am for the 366th time since the last time you said it was going to be “your year”?

My answer would be; why not? In a life full of bookends, what better time to prop up your most recent collection of tomes and memoirs and start a new shelf?

January is full of advice-columns offering everything from the latest and greatest diet, exercise plans and reasons there has never been a better time to leave your job. No wonder everybody has these fantastical aspirations, everywhere you look there is someone else telling you how easy it is! In reality, they are just muddying the waters.

By all means set goals, set targets, have a dream. The trick is to look at the end goal and work out what it will take to get there. Use the January madness to take stock and break your year into manageable sections. In that way, when the dust settles and trial periods meander slowly to an end as motivation dwindles, you will be heading on an upwards curve, ready to get stuck into your first achievable goal.

Whether it’s a new lifestyle, a new waistline or a new career, ignore the noise. There is nothing to be gained by rushing blindly into any of these things and following the crowd. Use the help that is available and make a plan. Only then will you be in a position to look back next year and say: “That was a good year”

 

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