It’s that time again where one year has ended and a new one has just begun. Doesn’t it always feel like the year comes to a close so quickly?
For many, the last few months can be rather stressful. There are still so many things to do, so many unfinished goals to complete. It’s easy to hyperfixate on everything you haven’t accomplished, but fortunately, it is just as easy to adjust this mindset. Forget about what you didn’t do in the past and focus on new possibilities for the future!
Instead of thinking about all of the ways that you might have fallen short of your goals this year, think about all of the ways that you can reach them next year using what you’ve learned. Better yet, set some new goals. To help you get started, here is a list of New Year’s resolutions for any women’s rights advocate who is seeking personal growth and development in 2023.
1. Compliment other women more frequently.
In a world where women are constantly brought down, it is so important to build each other back up. The next time you find yourself admiring something about a woman, tell her—let her know that you recognize and appreciate her good qualities. Bonus points if your compliments go deeper than physical appearance!
2. Celebrate the achievements of other women.
It’s easy to view the women around us as our competitors, but that is simply not how it works. Life is not a competition, and there is no limited supply of success. At the end of the day, we’re all just trying to live our best lives.
When you see another woman meeting a goal or celebrating a victory, celebrate with her. Recognize that her successes do not necessarily correlate with your failures, and allow yourself to genuinely be happy for her. You might even find yourself gaining inspiration from her.
To start, read about the accomplishments of these inspiring Live Your Dream Awards recipients who have overcome enormous obstacles such as teen pregnancy, poverty and abuse to live their dreams!
3. Apologize less.
If you find yourself apologizing for everything—even when you’ve done nothing wrong—you’re not alone. Studies show that women are more likely to apologize than men. While apologizing is certainly appropriate in some situations, it is not always necessary. You shouldn’t feel like you have to say sorry for asking someone to send you an overdue assignment or for sending back an incorrect order at a restaurant. You are not on this Earth solely to make other people feel comfortable.
4. Start journaling.
Journaling is a great way to get in touch with your inner self. It can also help relieve stress and get things off your chest. On top of that, it’s a great way to keep track of your progress in reaching your goals. Make time to write freely. At the end of the year, it could be fun to look back and reflect on what you wrote as well!
5. Get involved in causes you care about.
With all the problems going on in today’s world, trying to make a difference can feel overwhelming. Pick one or two causes that you are really passionate about and learn ways you can address them. By being proactive in this way, you can gain a greater sense of control over your life, meet amazing people with mindsets similar to your own, and have the opportunity to make a real impact on your community.
Whether you volunteer at a women’s shelter, organize a rally, or join an educational club, there are many ways to get involved. LiveYourDream.org, for example, provides women’s rights activists with flexible opportunities to spread awareness about important causes such as access to education, empowering girls and ending violence against women.
6. Protect yourself and other women from violence.
Violence against women is widespread. Consider the following:
See if your local gym offers self-defense courses. Learn how to protect yourself from violent situations. The courses might be fun and you can even bring some friends along with you!
Raise awareness. Post the above facts about violence against women on social media to help others understand the facts.
7. Take yourself out on dates.
We often get so caught up in maintaining relationships with our friends and family that we forget to maintain relationships with ourselves—which arguably may be the most important relationship of all! Spend more time by yourself. Reflect on who you are as an individual—your insecurities, your dreams, your goals, etc. Schedule a regular date with yourself to eat at a restaurant you’ve always wanted to try, explore a bookstore you’ve never been to, or stay home and have a self-care night. What you learn about yourself can be applied to the rest of your goals.
Reminder to yourself: don’t fret at the end of the year if you haven’t accomplished everything on your list. Our lives change. Our goals change. Our circumstances change. And the things that make us happy change. It’s never too early or too late to change your resolutions throughout the year to make them work for you!
Annabelle Ink is a student at Pomona College. She loves to spend her time reading novels, baking chocolate chip cookies, and playing hide-and-seek with her border collie.