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Jan 02 2017
by Marie Fayssoux

A New Year Doesn't Have to Mean a New You

By Marie Fayssoux - Jan 02 2017
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Now that it's 2017, the adage "new year, new me" is sure to be heard floating around daily conversation and found donning countless Instagram posts. For many, this is an exciting time, one in which they get to toss aside old habits and mistakes and begin again. Fresh starts can be revitalizing, but they can also be overwhelming. With a new year comes new challenges and new unknowns. 

There are some that view the new year less like a welcome rebirth and more like a daunting crapshoot. I can attest to the latter. (The New Year's Eves that follow a stressful year of loss and hardship always bring with them a heavy sense of dread for me.) Different still from those that proclaim "new year, new me" and those that worry about continued hardship, are those who love who they currently are and fear the new year to be a chance for negative change. Either way, their feelings shouldn't be invalidated. 

Regardless of what category you, or someone you know, fall into, it's OK. There's no right or wrong way to celebrate — or not celebrate — the new year. There's nothing wrong with making resolutions but there's also nothing wrong with being wary of change. No one should be made to feel they are wrong for wanting to become wholly new or for wanting to stay the same.

So for those of you that are afraid of change and those that believe that you're not deserving of it, I challenge you to have hope. There is no such thing as you being broken beyond repair, and luck can always change. You are deserving of peace. You are deserving of freedom. You are deserving of countless chances to love and be loved. Each day has the potential to fulfill a dream. Have hope.

As for those that love the thought of a new year meaning a new you, I wish you well with your efforts. I hope that you stay on track and meet your goals, but remember to be kind to yourself if you slip up. Mistakes and interruptions are bound to happen. Pick yourself up, dust yourself off and dare to try again. 

Lastly, to the people that don't feel the need to reinvent themselves, don't feel inferior when talk of resolutions arises. You're doing what's best for you and that's commendable. You shouldn't change your intentions because someone else says you should. Your friends and family that urge you to create resolutions may mean well, but they can't fully understand the reasons you have for not wanting to be brand new. Just breathe, thank them for their concern and be there to help them see their resolutions through to fruition.  

No matter where you stand on the saying "new year, new me," it's my sincerest hope that you all find happiness in the new year and take care of yourself. You're worth it. Happy 2017!

Lead Image Credit: Josh Boot via Unsplash

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Marie Fayssoux - University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Marie is attending the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She plans to major in human development/family studies and minor in creative writing. She has an affinity for Guinea pigs, hairless cats, glitter, avocados and changing the world. Follow her on Twitter @MissMarieAsh

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