It’s not ideal to be writing about the 2nd of January on the 7th. Fortunately, the delay provides a demonstration of the proceeding content. One of the biggest challenges of this time of year, in addition to the grey and miserable weather, the dark evenings and the pressure for merriment, is New Year Resolutions.
Who hasn’t had ‘January Syndrome’? Starting with high hopes for the New Year, strong motivations and a real determination for change. Whatever it is, fitness, budgeting or starting a blog, most people have, at some point, woken up on the 1st of January with the notion of ‘today’s the day’!
But then, the obstacles begin to appear. If you’d planned to go for a run, may be it’s raining. You meant to go the gym after work, but it’s been a long day, you had to stay late and now you’re too tired. Maybe some unexpected costs put a spanner in the works for your budget. Regardless of what it is, undoubtedly, reasons, complications or excuses (whatever you choose to call them) will crop up. For me, my husband and I visit my family in the south of England every New Year. A mixture of travelling and catching up with friends and family, resulted in some late nights and unpublished blog posts.
Some years you may well have had success with resolutions, but sometimes the slip ups in diets, exercise regimes or other new projects in the early days of January can make it feel like it’s game over. I have some friends who don’t set resolutions for this very reason. Coupled with the bad weather and darker days, for many, New Year’s Resolutions can add extra pressure and have a huge impact on their health. They feel stressed, anxious or depressed.
This year is different for me, due to a small fact I learnt about Thomas Edison. I gave my mum’s partner one of those ‘One This Day’ calendars for Christmas, and it announced that on the 2nd of January 1879 Thomas Edison began to construct his first generator. For me, this Edison information represents missing getting started on a new project from the tidy starting point of New Year’s Day. How much neater would it have been if Edison had sprung out of bed on the first day of the year and began to build. But he didn’t.
Something more well-known about Edison is that in December, 1914 his factory burnt down. His friends and family were horrified and shocked by the lack of concern that Edison gave – even telling his son to ”Go get your mother and all her friends. They’ll never see a fire like this again”. In a quote from The New York Times he said, “Although I am over 67 years old, I’ll start all over again tomorrow.” This quote has been adopted by business professionals as the desired attitude to have when faced with obstacles, but it can also be cited for personal reassurance. Most of us will slip up, make mistakes, miss days. We are human and we do our best. It is ok to ‘start all over again tomorrow’, as long as we do actually start tomorrow!
So, despite setting myself the task of writing a blog post every day, missing four days has not sent me into a tail spin of feeling like a failure (and I can assure you that a few months ago it would have).
Interesting Edison recourses I encountered: