Happy New Year from everyone at Salhouse Broad. We’ve got some exciting developments coming up in 2019, but I think firstly we should talk about New Year’s Resolutions and why, frankly, they’re useless.
The beginning of a New Year has no real cosmological significance. New Year could be counted from any day, however, as a society we’ve chosen the 1st January. But let’s face it, the timing is all wrong! Is there a worse time of year to cut out junk food, exercise, or give up alcohol than January, when it’s cold outside and there’s nothing to look forward to until the Spring!?
And to make things worse, by putting so much stock on this one day, emphasising the clean slate aspect, and encouraging resolutions, we also discourage change at other times of the year. At the end of the day if you want to make a change then, to quote MJ, take a look at yourself and then make a change. Even if we were to concede that New Year’s Day is as good a time as any to commit to a change, resolutions tend to be too easily broken, unrealistic, lack accountability, and are based on clichés rather than thoughtful reflection and self-improvement.
So what’s the alternative? The popular podcaster CGP Grey suggests you try Yearly Themes. This is not a commitment to a singular action or activity, but a backdrop for the coming year. It will help guide and influence your decisions and thoughts allowing you to achieve your long term goals. The best thing is you can implement a Theme at any time, not just the start of the year. They can last as long or short as you deem necessary, until you feel you have got everything you can out of it.
To give you some ideas, below is a list of Themes you might think about following in 2019:
The Year of Less – Feel your life is overwhelmed? Are you conscious that consumerist habits are affecting you negatively? The Year of Less encourages you to think about excesses, whether it’s spending money, buying things, or committing to too much professionally or socially. Do you really need another pair of jeans? Do you really need that last biscuit? Do you really need another project? Simplify, declutter, consume less. Easy!
The Year of Sustainability – There are so many things we can do in our lives to help the planet, which don’t require huge effort. Cutting out single-use plastics is trendy at the moment, but you can go further. Be considerate with the products you buy, be mindful of the energy you’re using. Give up meat, or at least cut down on it, and think about supporting charitable environmental organisations (or come and help volunteer with the Friends of Salhouse Broad and contribute to local conservation efforts).
The Year of New Experiences – Have you been canoeing? Camped under the stars? Gone on a guided walk round the Nature Trail? Just a few of the new experiences you could have when you visit us at the Broad. Okay, marketing pitch is over! New experiences not only keep us curious and broaden our horizons, but lead the body to release dopamine and the brain to create more synaptic connections!
The Year of Reconnecting – This could take many forms, reconnecting with old friends or family, reconnecting with a hobby or interest of your youth, reconnecting with the healthy lifestyle you’ve let slip away. I would recommend a year of reconnecting with nature, and a great place to do it is at Salhouse Broad. The benefits of reconnecting with nature are clear, for your mental and physical health. But it also helps us gain a better understanding of the world around us, a world that needs your support to protect.
In an unofficial Yearly Theme for Salhouse, we’re being guided by The Year of Wellbeing. We’ll be running events and building partnerships to highlight how important getting outdoors and surrounding yourself with nature is. We’re very excited to be working with Rooted in Nature and Nature and Nurture Therapeutic Services. These are amazing local organisations that help get people young and old out into the wonderful therapy that is being outdoors.
As people walk down the path to Salhouse Broad, we want them to begin a journey of leaving behind stress and anxiety, conflict and doubt. Let the sound of a gentle breeze and tweeting birds take over from political hot air and Tweeting trolls! Let things go, think sustainably, have a new experience, reconnect with nature. Whatever the New Year holds for you, we hope you’ll find time to enjoy yourself here at Salhouse Broad.
Happy New Year!