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You can make changes without completely reinventing yourself — this year, we’re replacing “New Year, New You” with a more self-compassionate mantra.
You may have started the New Year hyped up on resolutions and a "New Year, New Me" mindset. But as the weeks drag on, that outlook can begin to feel like more and more pressure. You don't have to reinvent yourself to see progress, and trying to change too much at once can actually work against you.
Forming a new habit can take a while — some research suggests it takes around 66 days(!) of repetition1 — so it's best to implement only a few new lifestyle changes at once for more effective results. Too much change, even positive, can be tiring and stressful as we learn to adapt to something new.2
"New Year, New You" can also be a trigger for body image issues and disordered eating habits, particularly when splashed across social media as messaging that targets extreme weight loss and other makeovers.3
Just like replacing New Year's resolutions with intentions, it could be time to shake off the societal "New Year, New You" pressure. In a world that rewards achievement, ambition, optimization and self-improvement, we know that "striving for progress over perfection" contradicts our programming.
But the more we hear about our patients' 2024 health goals,4 the more we want to encourage a realistic and self-compassionate mantra: "New Year, Healthier You." This twist helps to protect your mental well-being while promoting sustainable lifestyle changes and health improvements rather than a total overhaul. Instead of reinventing yourself every year, try reframing your mindset.