Carpe Annum

Robin Wells

Robin is an actor and a languages enthusiast, freshly-graduated from the University of London. He spends a fair amount of time in the YouTube community, and recently made the documentary 'Coming Out, Going On' for National Coming Out Day 2012.

So it’s all over now.

No, I’m not talking about the end of the world – I may be a Drama student with woeful timekeeping skills, but that would be ridiculously dramatic and late, even for me.

I’m talking about the hectic flurry of present-buying, cake-baking (and eating), quality time with the loved ones and general abuse of your liver that regularly denotes the festive period.

A large portion of the country will have started their first full working week of 2013, or will have just slowly made their way back to uni for the second semester of the year. To a lot of people, the fact that the hectic festive period is over is one to be rejoiced, coupled with the back-to-work, another-day-another-dollar, keep-calm-and-carry-on attitude that (my usage of American English terminology aside) is so very British.

Personally, I love the New Year. Call me cheesy and sentimental, but I think it is the time for new beginnings, for making that change in your life that you didn’t quite make last year – whether it be going to the gym more (very popular after the Christmas season of food-scoffing and alcohol swigging), taking up the saxophone, moving in with your boyfriend or girlfriend, looking more into your family history, or just spending more time with your friends.

The more pessimistic people just see it as denoting the passage of time, and with it their own increasing age (and waistline). They would scoff at my attitude and reduce my resolution to go to the gym more often down to something which I will fervently pursue for a fortnight, then start to put off in favour of less taxing activities, and then have given up by March.

Maybe they’re right, but then again, maybe they’re not.

In a way, it’s almost irrelevant whether they are, as the point of this feeling of renewal is to think about oneself and make a solid effort to change something, even if it doesn’t quite go according to plan. Those who belittle it and immediately condemn others to failure seem to be, in my experience, the same people who don’t self-reflect and get caught up in a toxic cycle of self-loathing because they haven’t changed the things they should in order to grow.

Yes, it is just another day. No, nothing has changed since a week ago when it was still 2012. But the point is to be aware that it could.

So go to the gym, start to learn the piano, see particular people more, or less.  Whatever it is that you have resolved to do or change in 2013, do it – because you’re the only one who can.

Happy New Year.

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