As New Years Eve approaches my mind is moved to two things: romance and resolutions.
Firstly, romance. I am single. Happily, most of the time, but I do get lonely at time of the year like this when I am told my society I should be in a couple. Someone to kiss when the ball drops (always makes me giggle). Someone to see in the New Year with. In those moments while Big Ben chimes midnight my heart sinks and tears well in my eyes.
Registration to dating websites goes up in the festive period. I am not the only one feeling the pressure. But Christmas can come and go by without me worrying about it. Instead it is New Years Eve which causes me to yearn.
A few years ago I spent the Festive season in Switzerland. I was nannying for a family whose dad was in finance in Geneva, they owned a chalet up one of the mountains. Christmas was great, but for New Years I was babysitting. The children were 4 and 7 years old so they were in bed for midnight. It was wonderful to watch out of the window as fireworks were set off at different points down the mountain. However, I had no one to share it with. That is the biggest issue with being single, sharing those special moments. When I remember that moment it brings back the echoes of the most profound loneliness I have ever felt.
Please do not get me wrong, I have amazing friends. I love living alone and spending time with me. Most of the time I am happy being me and content to enjoy my life. But nothing replaces those moments which you can share it with someone special. So each year I wish on the New Year Chimes that by next year I will be in love. I tell myself to ignore this but it is hard to ignore societies pressures at certain times of the year.
Secondly, comes the pressure for a resolution. Somehow a New Year is meant to mean a new me. Gym attendance goes up, diets are started, addictions are abandoned and hobbies are started. There is a lot of pressure to see our own flaws and change ourselves. However, how long does it last? Statistics show about 40% of Americans make resolutions yet only 3% of people achieve their goals (Forbes.com).
For me this pressure to be a new you is more about not being perfect in the first place. I am such a perfectionist that I find this idea of resolutions is just telling me I am a failure! I have failed to be the perfect me and so I must identify my flaws and fix them. But where do I start, I have so many flaws. Do I try to lose weight? Learn to play a musical instrument? Save more money? Stop eating takeaways? Do I do it ALL?
Then when I do try the goals are usually so unachievable that I am setting myself up to fail. Then I feel more of a failure. Then my spiral of self-deprecation begins to unravel. I am unworthy, never enough and worthless. Just like my mother told me so many times as a child.
Even with four years of therapy under my belt it seems I can slide to these feelings so fast. How do you change your mindset to not metamorphosis into child me?
Well, I am not setting any goals. If I have a resolution it is to keep going to therapy and working on looking after me. Do I have any hopes for the year ahead? Love of course but in the meantime I will be spending time with good friends. Each year we now arrange a New Years Party, the last couple of years we have done a murder mystery. It is fun and helps me to keep my chin up.
Are you setting any resolutions? Any goals for 2019? Are you also alone at New Years? How do you cope with this new year, new start, new me, time of year.
Happy New Year from my life in a mental world.