Actions, Not Resolutions, For Your Best Year Ever

In the spirit of doing, here is a list of actions, not resolutions, that will truly turn 2014 into a spectacular year:

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New Resolutions. UNSPLASH Sapan Patel

An article from Cracked.com popped up on my newsfeed this morning titled “6 Harsh Truths That Will Make You A Better Person.” Unlike most viral pieces, this one was surprisingly thought provoking and like the title says, very harsh. It’s definitely a cynical take on our human nature, but the author, David Wong and executive editor for the site, takes an interesting stab at success. He argues that the world (and the people in it) care only about what it can have from you. Your personal attributes—being nice, funny, caring—are next to useless. The catch is that these attributes can be useful, but only when they are the driver behind an action.

Especially in travel, where random act of kindness and spontaneous friendships show themselves aplenty, people aren’t as selfish and cold as they might be. Impressing people, what Wong stresses as an important marker of success, does not seem to ring true universally. While I believe we should give humanity a little more credit, Wong’s article definitely inspires one to adopt a more proactive mindset. Doing is always better than just talking about doing, and no one ever achieved happiness by just sitting around.

In the spirit of doing, here is a list of actions, not resolutions, that will truly turn 2014 into a spectacular year:

1. Develop and perfect a new or existing skill (preferably one you’re passionate about).

If you say you’re not passionate about anything, you’re lying! Take the classic litmus test: imagine you could get paid to do anything you want, what would it be? If you want to become a great cook, start sharpening your knives and get to it!

2. Let your thoughts move like passing clouds.

My high school English teacher used to say this, and man, it’s simple and really works. Your grudges, bad feelings, pessimistic thoughts should just pass. After all, your thoughts are just thoughts, not actions.

3. Bite your tongue.

It seems that people are fast to criticize, yet slow to encourage. In his article, Wong interprets criticizing others as a way to break down other peoples’ creations, whether those creations are articles, kids, or what have you. Don’t be the one judging other people’s accomplishments, but be the one to have something that can possible elicit criticism or acclaim. Which leads me to my next point.

4. Create and never stop.

Focus your energy on manifesting your aspirations. You’ve been practicing your skill, now it’s time to create, produce, and grow. Maybe the first few songs you write might not be a hit, but the more you do it and practice, the better you’ll get. Growing up, I would see Hollywood stars rise to fame and genuinely think success happened over night. Like your dad once told you, there’s no success without a good amount of hard work.

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5. Share.

Made cookies? Share them. Took travel videos of untouched lands? Share them.

Share not for vanity’s sake, but because your talents might be what someone in this world has been yearning for. Justin Bieber was the answer to millions of little girls’ ears, so spread your gifts and let them soar!

Let positivity and a proactive spirit guide you in this new, exciting year.

Desiree Constance Choy

Desiree is from San Francisco, California. She is an actress, known for 13 Reasons Why (2017), I Won't Give Up (2014) and Dreality (2016).

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