New year new beginnings?

By Daryl Khanda

It’s a very exciting time for those of us who are still alive in the world. 2023, here we are! It’s a new year and all the positive expectations and resolutions have been shouted out and penned down. What’s to expect in this brand-new year? Positive things of course! That new house, that job promotion, working out routines, and good eating habits, you name it! It’s all for grabs. We’re all starting on a clean slate. It’s a brand-new beginning!

Us humans are generally wired to “reset” at the start of anything, to redo and erase the past to start on a new leaf. That’s magical, isn’t it? It’s a good time to write those wrongs. Some start the year with prayers and fasting in certain religions, whilst others are more ritualistic and bathe themselves in the ocean. A brilliant way to start the year, right, with good omens? It’s a blessed time for everyone. The relief it brings to know that all the old year resolutions have been cancelled, and that we get to start again, filled with optimism for the untouched new page. It’s purely unmatched and amazing. The possibilities are endless.

Some do learn from mistakes made in the previous year, or the years before, and they tread on a lighter pathway. Some consider each year a new season. Some believe that seeking a blessing from the local “Prophet” is the best way to attract financial profits. We all have different ways in which we receive the new year. It’s a fascinating time, filled with hope and the opportunity to set things in motion in the way we’ve always desired, striving to be a better version of ourselves in different ways.

Now, this writing is not intended to judge or to take sides, but simply to present subjective principles in an objective manner. You might be wondering what this is all is about – well I’ll tell you now: it’s about expectations versus reality. It’s another modern retelling of the David and Goliath story, in the most brutal and vivid way. This is the truth, my truth. Most people are aware of it, but they choose ignore. It’s a narrative about the world as we know it and the laws that govern it. There shall be no mystery to this writing, or riddles, just plain, straight-forward facts as known. Get ready to dive into this cake!

Same year same you! Well, that’s the mantra for the most part of the “new” year if we do not set things in motion. Life moves in a continuum. Or well, Albert Einstein’s time-continuum theory says so at least. As you all know, nothing changed when you returned to your bedroom after new-year’s eve. We may need to perform different tasks on Sunday and Monday, but both days are identical in the fourth dimension (time) with 86400 seconds each. Same applies to any other day. It’s the same day, just a different time and date. Same applies to our new year. It’s like last year, it’s like the next year, if we’re still breathing. So, the big question is, what brings change? Does change come from writing down our goals? Is change seeking a higher power to intervene in our personal lives? Is it getting motivated to start just because it’s the start of the year? Well, we all know the answer, but all our answers take different forms. It’s a simple word we used to love to hear when we were kids, the small word called action! Action, execution, the ‘do’ word, whichever synonym that resonates with you. Work. One of my favorite online mentors, Tony Robbins says, “Execution trumps knowledge every day of the week.” Knowledge is very important, but without action, it’s as good as no knowledge at all. Some say wisdom is knowledge applied, which simply means, no application, no wisdom. Ground zero, nada, done. Now the obvious question would be, don’t we all know that we need to take action for things to happen? “Yes we do!” is the obvious answer. Then the big question is, then what happens?

What happens to the new year’s resolutions that we started the year with? Yes, we’re not perfect and we can’t meet all of them every year, it’s unachievable. That’s right. But the question we should be asking is, how can we accomplish those previous goals? How can we be more consistent and pull through till the end of the year? What’s the secret formula? And again, we all know the solution and the words. Action, baby steps, consistency, evaluation. In that order. Rinse. Repeat. Should I say more? I think I’ve said it all with those words.

We need action for our lives to take the direction that we want – consistent action. I didn’t mention motivation. Motivation is important too, and people show their motivations with their new year’s resolutions. However, motivation is not the most important factor, after all, it often fades away with time. We need motivation to start, and we need consistency to get the job done. Consistency is mastery, execution is key. Tracking progress is equally important. The journey climbing a mountain starts with a simple step. Such a simple and basic statement and action, no further away from the pure truth, like God’s voice. Let’s focus on the simple steps, the day-to-day tasks. Rome was not built in a day, nor destroyed in one as well.

Lean into your goals by making easy steps to accomplish them. A day at a time, a week at a time, a month at a time, and track that progress. Find better ways to execute, and just execute. The world belongs to those who “just do it,” as the Nike slogan says. So, let’s do it, whether we want to or not. Quite frankly, we have to! We promised it to ourselves at the start of the year. The end of the year is a great time to celebrate how we attained our yearly goals, and how we conquered discipline. The self-satisfaction that comes with that! It’s too good to be true!

I wish everyone a Happy New year and a successful completion of your yearly goals. As I said, action, baby steps, consistency, and evaluation. One can start by planning goals after writing them down, and by finding good starting points. It can be day-to-day or weekly (consistency to attain the goal), whatever strokes you well. And remember: step by step, ease into it. Have as many evaluations as you need, and restructure as often you need to attain the same goal if you’re unsatisfied with your actions or consistency. It can be weekly, monthly, or quarterly. Whatever is required to accomplish the goal. We are all works-in-progress, in pursuit of our true desires. The late Jet Li once said, “I fear not the man who has practiced 10,000 kicks once, but I fear the man who has practiced one kick 10,000 times!”

I have a reading suggestion as well: Atomic Habits by James Clear. It’s a good read that teaches how to acquire good habits easily, and how to drop the bad ones.

Have a goal-accomplishing year!

For those that have been smashing their new year’s resolutions, sorry for wasting your time, you’ve mastered discipline already! So, it’s new beginnings always to you, and congrats on conquering 2022!

23 January, 2023