This year I won’t set resolutions, because I don’t want to be a “new year, new me” kind of person anymore. This year – I’ve realised – I just want to be me. Wholly, un-apologetically me.
Of course, there are various things about myself that I would like to change, but if there’s one thing I’ve learnt from last year, it’s that you can’t force yourself to change. I’ve tried to make myself more sociable, confident and outgoing, I’ve tried and I’ve tried and I’ve tried, but no matter how hard I tried, I always fell back to being my usual quiet self. I’ve realised now, however, that is just how I’m meant to be, and how I want to be.
Changes in our personalities and our lifestyles don’t happen because we want want them to, or because we list them as goals to achieve, alongside doing more exercise or studying more for example. It’s true that it is possible to change small things about your personality, but these changes can’t just be ticked off a list or scheduled in to our busy lives. Changes in who we are happen through the things we experience, the actions we carry out, how we think and feel. I have changed a lot last year not because I set my mind to it, but because of everything I experienced – the good and the bad – and how this opened my eyes to the world around me.
This year, I will give myself the space to grow, to experience new things and to allow these experiences to shape who I am and give me a better understanding of life and all that it entails. Last year I lost track of myself too many times – I was too caught up in wondering why I couldn’t be like everyone else, trying to fit in to places where I didn’t realise I had fitted in all along, as me. The only reason I didn’t feel like I fitted in is because I was always trying to be like someone else. But the truth is, I can’t be like anyone else – and neither can you – because I am me, you are you and we are all unique and wonderful in our own ways. I’ve learnt that my friends like me for who I am, not for who I was trying to be. Through all the clouded thoughts and confusion last year, I forgot this. I forgot how to accept friendship in its purest form, I forgot how it felt to feel loved and appreciated. Those feelings became buried under all the overthinking and mind-trickery. I don’t want to lose this feeling again, which is why I need to be me, and let others see me for who I am.
Of course this year will be hard – there are numerous significant things that will be happening to me, such as taking my A Level exams, finishing sixth form and leaving behind some of the best friends I’ve ever had and moving to the other side of the country for university. But I am ready for these challenges, I’m ready for the new adventures, all the good times and hard times. I’m ready because I know I can tackle them as me, just as I always have but now I know that throughout my life I have picked up my broken pieces, dusted myself down and fitted them back together, albeit with the help of others along the way, but if I’ve done it many times before then these challenges will not break me beyond repair, that I am certain of.
So I’m not going to say this year I want to be more healthy, happy, confident or whatever else I was planning to, because all I really and truly want is to be myself. My honest self – no pretending to be anyone else. So what I offer to you, 2018, and whatever you may bring, is me. This is who I am, who I was and who I will always be. Just…me.