Why my January Optimism?

I commence every year with a resolution; a promise to myself and perhaps others to be a better version of myself – whether this means hitting the gym, starting a swearing jar, reading more books, etc. 
But why do most of us fail to keep it up? What happens to that fierce desire that seems to undergo a diminishing return with every passing week?

I was recently watching these motivational videos because my New Years resolution was to not only be a better person, but to understand myself in the process.  Because it occurred to me this New year where I did celebrate my 25th birthday that I was not being selfless enough. I had this revelation after a simple question arose during a conversation with siblings. The question seemed easy, so much so that I thought answering it would be a quick response. ‘What have you done recently that was selfless…self-sacrificial?’

I thought about it. The first five minutes seemed hopeful to say the least. Then 30 mins past, a day, two days…and still nothing substantial. I had never thought it so hard to recall an event of self sacrifice. I had mostly sacrificed time, some money, but nothing to brag about.

That’s when I realised things needed to change. I needed to go on this quest of understanding for my own personal growth. So I spent the start of my New Year taking silly online tests, and meditating on my past since that plays a part in affecting my present behavior and choices.I remembered a few memories I had carelessly placed in a vault to never be remembered. Among the many things I remembered, I realised that I tend to turn the leaf on a memory or happening and move on without looking back.

I had once told a friend of mine that I only drive forward because I never learnt to drive backwards. I remembered him laughing so hard as if I had meant for it to be a joke. I remembered him saying with a chuckle, this should be the title of your book someday.

At that moment, I was not only astonished at what he thought was a joke, but taken aback by the honesty behind it all. In that swift self-reflection, I realized that I do in-fact live my life by ‘driving forward’.  This is not necessary all that positive. On one side of the coin, I do strive to succeed despite various obstacles that try to push me down.

On the other, I do sometimes turn to run away, brush things off and ‘drive forward’ without truly making amends with the past. Never really finding out whether something was meant to be or not.

So I made it my resolution to care enough to remember good and bad and draw a life lesson from every experience. And more importantly, to learn to be self-less in the process. So far, as any other resolution, it is going well. Only time would tell how long I keep at it.

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