What A Year Can Do

And Why You Should Do It


DISCLAIMER: This article is written by an optimist, a dreamer, a staunch believer of good things in the world. So, if you’re a cynic/critic/or you just hate life, then feel free to take the second sentence exit from this article.

Hi, I am actually pretty pleasant. I just had to ward away the cynics. I’ve never seen a happy cynic, anyway.

Week Uno of the New Year, huh? A seemingly defining time of the year like this, slices the humanity into two groups, apparently at battle with each other. One, the Realists. (I realized the word Cynic was getting old)  Two, the Believers.

Let’s start with the Believers. They have goals, plans and dreams for themselves and they see the New Year’s as a magically concocted machine which will fulfill their holy metamorphosis into a vividly successful, flawless superhuman. Apparently, the gears don’t just turn in the clock that gongs at midnight, but also in the mechanics of their human system. The Reset button located just behind their earlobes is activated (Kids below the age of 13 should not try this at home!) and they view this as a new beginning, a fresh start, where they can leave all the drudgeries behind, and start anew with whatever progress has been saved.

On the other side stand our valiant, brave warriors, the Realists. The species thrives in their natural habitat, The Comfort Zone. They believe that life simply happens to them. They view the Believers as imbecile gazelles who choose to see the sparkle in the eyes of the cheetah that’s going to devour them. To them, New Year’s is a childish concept. Although they probably don’t mind that kiss at midnight.  They are convinced that resolutions are as true as your exes’ promises. They think, no, they know that nobody could possibly have the conviction to actually follow through just because you’re forced to buy a new calendar. (For kids who are confused, the app on your phone gets its name from a physical tool made from what we, in our time, used to call paper.)

Oh how do we know this? Accurate statistics from reliable sources states that for every “New Year, New Me” selfie the Believer posts, there is a Realist rolling his eyes.

What I intend on doing here is to peel elements of logic from both arguments and pass them through a stencil of hope, faith and all that glittery stuff. I may accidentally give you an existential crisis, but I do it with love, I promise.  

New Year’s is just a concept humans created. A year passes by because it is defined that way. Wow, we’re aligned the same way to the sun like we were a while ago, and we’re calling this buffer time, a year. Wow, we’re humans and we’re so clever. Oh please, I haven’t met these mindless humans everyone speaks of, but in my head that’s what they sound like.

Take a step back and let’s reassess. Everything that surrounds you is just a concept, too. Time is a concept designed for us to keep track of movement and change. So is the language that’s aiding our little communication right now. All of this makes sense (or sounds completely cuckoo) because we, as a species have made ourselves a co-ordinate system to work within. We’ve devised definitions, synonyms, right, wrong, all by ourselves, because we crave the sense of security it brings with it. We chase the feeling of knowing or of pretending to have control. New Year’s hype is just a consequence of this need for reassurance that is rooted to humanity and its insecurities. We want to convince ourselves that we’re destined for greatness and this day is supposed to bring it to us.

And the chances of failing at that are just as much as any other day with the scrawny lack of conviction, will power or the passion to drive any of these things. And on this day, skeptics get a chance to pull your leg for the same because it happens in a more announced way. It’s just the same as any other day.

But let’s talk about what a year can really do. Yes, this fictional, illusory concept that our mysterious ancestors have created to mark the sun. A year can clutch and pack in its pockets lessons of all kinds. It can be a tracking device to measure your progress. It can be a vast, accommodating deadline. It can truly be anything you want it to be, if you have the heart (there was another word that was stronger but it would have surely been censored out) to go after it. And you don’t have to do it at a New Year’s Eve party while you’re simultaneously thinking of ways to get over your hangover. You can do it whenever you want to.

The entire Universe is just a concept! We define everything. We define time, space, science, philosophy, love, math and even slippery and tricky things like emotions. We observe things and drop a dollop of meaning on it. As a human race, the power we’ve been given is appalling.

And you have that power and an opportunity to define the only thing you can ever call your possession. You. New Year’s won’t help that. You, doing something about it, will. Your goals and dreams deserve to be fulfilled. Every realized dream is currency used to pay a hit-man to kill one more lazy couch potato who makes memes about not having their life together and cry themselves to sleep after 56 continuous episodes of New Girl and 2.5 tubs of Cookie Cream.

Following through is the hardest part. Sure. But did Batman not follow through when he said he’d save Gotham City? Now that is what Batman stands for. What do you stand for? You have the power to define that.

So, do it.

You owe it to the power of humanity.

And Batman.

  • Meghana Kumar

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