New Years Resolutions

January is here - when everyone makes their resolutions for the new year. By far, the most common one I've heard is weight loss. People promise themselves to eat less and exercise more. This is especially common because New Years happens after the holiday season - the time when people 'over-eat'.

There are so many issues with this. First, lets start with the resolution idea: why should you decide to be healthy for only one part if the year? Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is a lifelong decision, not one you make temporarily. Second, the idea that you need to lose weight after the winter holidays is silly; even if you do eat a little more during the celebrations and parties, you'll return to your normal eating habits afterwards, so your body will adjust itself. There's no need to try to change your body when it already knows what to do!

I think the problem is that we all hear people saying that this is their resolution, so we somehow become convinced that we need to do the same. We hear commercials advertising for free gym memberships, discounted weight-loss programs - and so we think that we need to get on board with everyone else.

But reality is, living a healthy lifestyle needs to be top priority, regardless of what time of the year it is. We need to see that we deserve to eat healthy and exercise all the time - it's a LIFESTYLE. We need to stop thinking that the after the holidays is the time when we need to lose weight. This only makes the holidays seem like a temporary fun time, before the 'real work' of losing weight begins. But this isn't true! We need to learn to love our bodies at all times, to nurture them, and to keep them healthy always.

How about making a resolution to have a break every once in a while, to go out a have a massage, watch a movie, spend time with friends and family, etc? Or make a resolution to start each day with positivity, to make others smile, or to laugh. These are the true joys in life. These are the things that really matter.

So as January closes in, I'm choosing to dedicate time out of every day to smile because I'm blessed. I will find one thing I love about my life and be thankful for that. That's my resolution. What's yours?

Marina Abdel Malak is a student in Nursing with interest in mental health and eating disorders. She has her own blog at She is recovering from anorexia nervosa.