Staff Editorial: New Year, New Me ideal is poisonous due to unrealistic goals

  #NewYearNewMe is a trending tag during January across all social media platforms. This tag is usually accompanied with posts or pictures showcasing brand new diets, makeup looks and overly-priced gyms. Friends and followers may look at these posts in admiration of the admin’s determination to improve throughout the year. The truth, however, is that this mindset can be hazardous to physical and psychological health.

  According to Juliet Eyesenck in her article “The Most Common New Year’s Resolutions – And How to Stick to Them,” exercising meets the top of the list with a promising 38 percent vote while losing weight is the second at 33 percent. While these goals are admirable, many who set goals concerning losing weight set them unrealistically and attempt to follow through using unhealthy methods of starving, surgery and over-exerting.

  One such example could be Sedona Jamieson, who was diagnosed with anorexia at the very beginning of 2017. In her article “Why struggling with Anorexia Around New Year Is Difficult,” found on, Jamieson describes her struggles during the New Year when everyone around her spent their time setting unrealistic goals that she, herself, succumbed to in previous years. She struggled all throughout the Christmas season with a complicated sense of guilt.

  Weight loss, despite being popular, is not the only goal that is set with unrealistic standards. Some plan to excel in makeup like the artists on Instagram, while others make a promise to completely reconstruct their diet. Setting unrealistic goals actually has a name in psychology; “planning fallacy.” Planning fallacy is when a person underestimates the amount of time and work needed to complete a goal.

  Setting reasonable goals may not come easy to some. However, there are few few ways in which you can set goals that are more suitable to both your standards and your capacity.

  According to Routine Excellence “Why Do You Set Unrealistic Goals,” One solution could be to split up your goal into individual tasks, which are further broken down depending on time and other sub-tasks. Another is to create a concrete plan on a day-to-day basis that builds up to your goal, such as creating a calendar that contains specific daily regimes that build up to your goal in moderate steps.

  The last recommended step is to predict the outcome of your goal based on your own research, versus the abilities of people who have already achieved your goal. For instance, instead of basing your workout on an Olympian, base it on someone who had similar weight prior to their own weight loss.

  In the end, the best mindset to keep when creating resolutions is to prioritize yourself in the moment; not your dreams for the future.