New Year. New You? Whatever YOU want!

Published: 02 Jan 2024

New Year.  New You? Whatever YOU want!

The confetti’s settled, the champagne (maybe) fades, and here we are again. Post New Year’s Day, and the universe unleashes its annual bombardment of self-improvement advice. Grow, optimise, transform! If you’re not climbing, apparently, you’re tumbling into oblivion.

But hold on a minute. Before we get swept away in the torrent of “10 Hacks to a Six-Pack” and “Manifest Your Millionaire Mindset,” let’s ask: what is all this noise about?

Sure, some of it comes from a good place. Maybe an author genuinely wants to share a personal epiphany that’s been life-changing, a bit of wisdom they hope can spark our own growth. But let’s be honest, a whole lot of this New Year’s “growth” agenda is about one thing: selling.

By bombarding us with perceived deficiencies – flabby bodies, stagnant careers, rocky relationships – the self-improvement industry primes us for the solution. That’s where the magic detox tea, the productivity planner, the online coaching program appear, each a gilded promise whispering, “This is what you need.”

And speaking of whispering, let’s talk about those “influencers” peddling their miracle cures. Just because something worked for a 23-year-old with six hours a day to exercise doesn’t mean it’s a one-size-fits-all panacea for my (mostly) functional early 50’s life.

Look, I’m not against self-improvement. Learning, evolving, becoming better versions of ourselves is a worthy pursuit. But it shouldn’t be dictated by the latest algorithm-driven trend or the carefully curated Insta-life of someone we’ll never be. True growth isn’t about chasing some pre-packaged ideal; it’s about listening to our own inner compass, understanding our unique needs and desires, and taking steps that resonate with us, not the noisemakers.

So this New Year, let’s tune out the sirens of self-improvement excess. Instead, let’s focus on self-acceptance, embracing who we are (body hair and all) while gently nudging ourselves towards genuine growth – the kind that nourishes our souls, not just feeds someone else’s bottom line. Let’s ditch the one-size-fits-all mantras and rewrite the script of our own lives, fueled by curiosity, kindness, and maybe a little less kale juice.

Remember, progress isn’t linear, and growth doesn’t require a hashtag. This year, let’s celebrate the beauty of our individual journeys, flaws and all, and find the personal growth that truly makes us bloom.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have a date with a good book and a comfy blanket. Happy (uncluttered) New Year!