Updated: Nov 5
Congratulations on making it to 2021, a common phrase over the last few days. But seriously, well done.
Have you ever thought that societal pressure is the reason for so many issues? The person social media tells you to be, is that who will make you happy? Instagram tells you; you need a big bum and long lashes to attract a man or be six foot to make a woman happy, and you need a degree to succeed in life. Success, attractiveness, to name a few, are all subjective things. Perhaps the idea of new year new me should be to focus on who you are meant to be. What version of you would make you happiest?
So then, how do I accept that I am not society's version of perfect? How do I cope with potentially being ostracised? Honestly, there is no correct answer. It can take years to be able to block out unnecessary opinions, and even then, it's a daily battle. Possible methods to deal with this stress from societal expectations include:
Spending less time on social media to avoid seeing posts that may trigger you.
Spending your time on social media effectively learning from those who inspire you.
Discussions with close ones to vocalise your thoughts
Noting down all achievements, no matter how small you may think they are
Private self-reflection through meditation and/or journaling
How do I self-reflect?
1. Ask yourself the hard questions that you would usually avoid. For example,
Am I spending my time wisely?
Am I spending my time with people that are building me up and encouraging me to be the best version of myself?
What worries me the most about the future?
What do I want out of life?
2. Schedule Time
3. Be realistic
Self-reflection or mediation, can take one minute or an hour, start small so you are not overwhelmed.
4. Be thorough
Don’t rush. Take time to answer those hard questions, feel all emotions and observe your behaviours.
5. Ask for help, if you need
Goal Setting or New Years’ Resolutions
1. Stick to one goal
These goals or resolutions could be daily, weekly, monthly or yearly. Pick one area of focus and stick to it, remember to pick something that will bring you joy, not society or your family. When making realistic changes you are more likely to stay motivated and realise you do not need social media approval to achieve something for yourself.
2. Make a plan
To ensure success you need to research the change you wish to make and make sure you have the resources required to succeed. Be specific, create a weekly or daily plan depending on your goal for the year. A common goal for many is to become healthier, but, how are you going to do this? Diet changes, the gym, what specifically will you do? When you have an easily accessible plan it will help you not become so overwhelmed. Small manageable chunks are always best.
3. Plan for obstacles/problems
4. Commit and be brave
On the day you wish to begin your go for it! A useful technique is to write your goal or change on a piece of paper, and place it somewhere you will see it every day. This will help reinforce and motivate you.
5. How to keep positive in this new year
Reward yourself! Even for small things.
These are just a few techniques and ideas which you can use to help you overcome the societal pressures we all face every day. Happy New Year!!