Sibongile Mafu

Long live resolutions!

2013-01-02 09:21

Sibongile Mafu

I've always been a fan of New Year's resolutions, only because it's a great time to rip open a new chapter in our lives, and give ourselves permission to change what we need to change.

There's what you'd call the standard resolutions, those that people knowingly, or unknowingly make for themselves. I want to be fitter, save more, eat better, repair relationships - these are all positive things.

Many look down on these because for the most part, people don't follow through with them. January is considered one of the toughest months of the year. The bank balance is at its unhealthiest, and generally people can no longer afford to indulge, so resolutions are easier to put together, because for the most part -  you have nothing left. You've exhausted yourself to the point where all you can do now is start fresh, and start strong.

But I do think there's something admirable about making yourself aware of the things you want and need to do in the New Year, even if failure is an option. Yes, we know that every year people make these proclamations and by March, have slipped back into their old ways, but I'm inspired by those who don't. Those who just seem to get on with it and push to achieve the goals they have set out for themselves.

Lying by a river in Port Alfred in the Eastern Cape (tough life, I know) I was inspired to write down everything my heart desires. Things that have been bubbling under for a few months, things that I have gently pushed away, seemingly too big for me, things that I think I do not deserve. A new year brings with it the confidence that you have denied for yourself for the months before. A new year allows you to go where you have perhaps been too scared to go.

It may be the child in me, or the fact that I'm still young and haven't been completely jaded by life that believes there's something incredibly magical about this time of the year (no, I didn't watch any firework display.) Maybe you could blame the extra sunshine, or the extra rest but things seem just a little bit more possible now. The world looks so different when you get eight hours sleep.

And there is also something very special about the last month of the year. You're able to touch base with family, celebrate the things you have achieved and motivate yourself to be better and do better in the New Year. And also maybe switching things up just a bit so you don't wake up and realise you have been repeating the same year for 30 years in a row. There are people who would be completely satisfied with this, but I appreciate it when human nature outwardly rejects this by setting themselves new goals every year.

A lot of people are now slowly making their way back to the real lives. Holidays are coming to an end, and we're called back to the routine of our day-to-day lives. If anything, New Year's resolutions can give us a gentle nudge to examine how we do things, and realise that if we don't like it, we can change it.

I indulged in 2012, and realise some form of exercise and better eating needs to happen in 2013. I will focus on making these realities. I know I’ll trip up, but the intent is there.

I deserve a doughnut for my efforts.

I wish you a wonderful 2013, filled with good people, good art, good experiences and most importantly good service. As South Africans, we deserve it.

- Sibongile is a videographer, blogger and social media enthusiast who would be nothing without her thumbs. Follow her on Twitter: @SboshMafu.

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