I love Chinese New Year, but not just for the way the city I live in empties out as everyone else heads home for the holidays. And not even just for all the delicious food and the week-long holiday. I really love it because it’s like a built-in test of my January 1st New Year’s resolutions.
Chinese New Year (aka Spring Festival) is the first day of the lunar calendar, and it usually falls about 4-6 weeks after January 1st. To me, this makes it the perfect length of time to try out my new years’ resolutions and then review them over the Spring Festival break. I figure if a resolution hasn’t stuck by then, it’s not working for me, so I can either modify it or drop it altogether.
It’s also nice to reflect on how far I’ve come with resolutions that are working well, give myself a big old lashing of praise in my amazing achievement of drinking four glasses of water a day, and plan to keep up this ground-breaking change for the rest of the year! Haha well, something like that.
Since I often travel back to Australia to visit family and friends, I also like to use my return to China as a way to make a fresh start each time too. Reviewing the things that I want to change while I’m away, it somehow feels easier to come back fresh and try to make changes, like hanging up my clothes as soon as I take them off (life-changing, I know!) and being less angry with rude strangers who seem to know more about how to raise my kid than I do. Or at least coming up with some good comebacks.
Life in China can certainly be challenging with our crazy foreign ways, but there are plenty of chances to make a fresh start and ensure we’re enjoying life and happy with the choices we make each day. A few years ago, I was going through a time when many good friends were leaving or had already left China. As my group of really good friends close by started to dwindle, I realised I had closed myself off to meeting new people. I decided to try and be more open to new people, and of course it was not long after that I met my now-husband.
Even if you’re not in China, you can use the Chinese new year as a way to review the things that are important to you and see if you’re happy with how 2019 has started for you. This year, Chinese new year falls on Tuesday, February 5th. February 4th is the night to watch the Spring festival gala (Chunwan) on CCTV and see which offensive and inappropriate skits have gotten past the censors this time. I can’t wait!