Well, 2016 is over. If you're to believe the mainstream media, it's been the worst year ever, and it's fairly easy to see why. With Britain voting to leave the EU and Donald Trump now President-elect of the United States, many liberal-leaning people will have found this a fairly disasterous 12 months. Even if you're a right wing Euroskeptic, there have been so many celebrity deaths that it has at times felt like a sick joke. That said, there have been many positives too. I'm not a huge sports fan, but even I think TeamGB having their most successful Olympics to date is pretty cool. Globally, carbon emissions have stalled and poverty has fallen. The tiger population has increased for the first time in a century. Hyperbole and drama may sell newspapers, but they're unlikely to reveal the full story.
For me personally, 2016 has been a pretty successful year. I (finally) passed my membership exams, started working at registrar level, graduated from my MSc and moved in with my boyfriend - can't complain at that! Of course, some things haven't gone quite so well. I didn't record my resolutions last year, but no doubt they'll have included weight loss, which hasn't happened to any significant level, and increased exercise, which has happened on occasion but hasn't really been sustained. Nonetheless, on the whole, it's not been a bad year for me.
So, will I be making resolutions this year? It's difficult not to, but it seems silly making the same ones I've made (without much success, obviously), year on year for over a decade. Whilst I'd love to be slimmer and fitter, they're relatively superficial goals. Instead, I'm going to set myself some other challenges:
- I am someone who looks after other people, both in my work as a doctor and at home when I like to feed and generally "mother" my friends and family, however I'm pretty bad at looking after myself. Therefore, I am going to try much harder with self care this year. There are lots of little things I can do, but mostly it's about remembering that I'm actually worthy of being looked after.
- I tend to be quite a negative thinker. I assume the worst in most situations, and almost always assume that I have done the wrong thing, annoyed people and am generally a terrible human. Linked in with my self care resolution, I'm going to try to think more positively, particularly about myself. There are plenty of things I'm probably good at, and believing in myself doesn't make me a dreadful person.
- I compulsively apologise for everything - sometimes I even say sorry when I'm not sure what I'm sorry for. It's silly and to be honest, probably quite annoying that I basically apologise for existing. So, I'm going to stop saying sorry unless it's actually warranted.
As I've stated on many occasions before, I've struggled with my mood for a long time, and I'm hoping that these resolutions will help with that. We live in a world where we are constantly shown how well everyone is doing. One of the lovely things about social media is that we are able the share our friends' good news and happy occasions quickly. Engagements, weddings, graduations, pregnancies, holidays and nights out are all photographed and shared within minutes. It's therefore easy to believe that everyone else is living a perfect life whilst we're barely holding it together. To borrow an excellent quote from a friend's daughter, the problem here is comparing our friends' "highlights" with our own "outtakes". So the next time I scroll through facebook and feel miserable that everyone else is partying, holidaying, succeeding and being perfect, I need to remember that my own profile looks just the same. Anyway, there's nothing wrong with watching Netflix in your onesie with a cup of tea - it just doesn't make a great photo!