Note: Everything in this article reflects my own opinions, rather than absolute statements about what you should do. There is no one way to take care of your wellbeing or celebrate the new year.
I live with a cocktail of chronic treatment-resistant depression, anxiety, and ADHD among other things which means I have to do things differently from most other people. I’m proud of who I am and wouldn’t change it for a second, but I want people who are struggling—with or without diagnoses—to know that they are not alone. There are people who can relate.
Chronic conditions often mean that life can be incredibly unpredictable, and add the layer of an ongoing long-term pandemic… it’s not a tasty recipe. With resolutions, many of us don’t manage to follow through with them, feel bad about ourselves… and this starts a vicious cycle. Moreover, some like myself can have extra trouble being consistent with resolutions because of the ups and downs we face, but perhaps the goal shouldn’t be consistency?
How about acceptance and giving yourself credit for your resilience? Resilience doesn’t mean you’re smiling, on top of the world. Sometimes resilience is being curled up in your bed, sobbing, and feeling hopeless; though you eventually get up. Living in a pandemic, I want to remind you that getting by is more than enough of a goal, and you can make that resolution at any moment.
For those of you who find resolutions beneficial to your mental health and enjoy following through with them, I’m so glad for you and encourage you to keep doing what works for you.
If resolutions make you feel worse because you fail to meet what might be insanely unreasonable goals that you’ve set, you don’t need them. You need to be kinder to yourself for sure and find a way to do things that work for you.
With the nature of my health, my plans change within seconds. I wanted to start exercising this week after months of struggling to do so because of my mental health and medication side effects affecting my energy. Unfortunately, I had a really tough week and things didn’t go as planned.
So what do I do now? I’ll give myself some time to feel better and try again when I can. And that’s all I can do. To me, it’s a much more reasonable daily resolution.
Be kind to your mind. Reach out for your help if you need some support picking yourself up. It’s okay to not be okay, but know there are resources available for you.
If you have been affected by anything mentioned in this article, or need any extra support, check out the KCLSU Wellbeing Hub, including the Extra Support links: https://www.kclsu.org/help/wellbeing/hub/