I understand the sentiment, “New Year, New You!” Usually that’s how it’s phrased, exclamation mark absolutely critical. This idea, that appears in magazines, on blogs, TV shows etc. around the New Year, sends the same message as the endless lists of resolutions. You were not good enough last year, you need to change. Here are five ways to do it—and make it fast!
But what the hell? Every year, a new me? Is that really necessary? Was the old me that bad? The articles and the lists speak to every American female’s desire and quest for continuous self-improvement. This especially American thing, this need to be better in myriad ways, is so wonderful and yet so self-defeating.
Isn’t striving for unattainable perfection, year after year, a bore? At what point have we earned the right simply to live? I don’t mean to exist in some smug and self-centered cocoon, I mean just use the lessons that life has already doled out. It was tough, after all; and you’ve learned a lot, haven’t you?
We know that we are our experiences, our habits, dreams, failures and flaws. All of it. To strive for anything less than the whole picture of ourselves is senseless. Instead of endlessly recreating or reinventing, why not revisit yourself instead? What were you once passionate about? Reexamine what you used to feel and believe in. What have you forgotten about yourself? Ask what you love about yourself and keep it!
We all seem to be fascinated with the French style (I know I am!), particularly the French woman’s way of seemingly just living, with ease. Well, I suspect that she would pfff at the thought of this endless recreating of self. She knows that her flaws are not fatal, and she knows they can be charming. Although imperfect, she is living happily, even exuberantly, as her flawed self.
One of 2014’s fun reads, written by four very stylish French women, was How To Be a Parisian Wherever You Are; Love, Style, and Bad Habits. Yes, they say, we are our bad habits too. I find this attitude refreshing, liberating and, more importantly, interesting. Truly, a perfect thing is rarely interesting…