A bitterly cold morning greeted me as I woke up to 2018 this morning. I am trying to temper my optimism with reality. I always feel this way when a new year begins, it gives me hope that things will improve, but I have to appreciate that progress over the long term because it seldom makes a significant difference from one day to the next. Change usually is incremental in our lives, but it also constant.

    The temptation to assume that a new year will instantly result in massive changes to our lives is foolish. The extra weight will not magically diasppearin one day without any effort, we don’t become more patient and loving people by waking up with a hangover. These changes take time and discipline and work. They won’t appear instantly, but they can be seen over time.

    My desire to be less dependent on social media for affirmation will not make one bit of difference today. The only tiny adjustment that I can possibly see will be to spend less time on there and do something else I want to do. After a period of a few weeks, I should notice the difference in my daily life, but not really sooner than that.

    I know people who will be so thrilled to start the new year today because of all their resolutions and plans to be a better person. These are the same people who will be disappointed and depressed within a week because things don’t seem to have changed at all for them. If you have to make a resolution, let it be to give yourself a break from stress about things that you cannot instantly change. Keep working to change, but don’t spend all the time hating on yourself because you cannot see the change happening fast enough. Give yourself a little credit and a lot of time, and then you will see the results.

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