Here's how to deal with the start of 2015
It's the beginning of a new calendar year. For some of us the date signifies a chance for a fresh start, an opportunity to right all the wrongs of 2014 and get down and dirty with some self-improvement.
For others, 2015 is an enormous, ravenous animal the size of 365 days, with no other instinct apart from to eat us alive. Whether you're motivated or terrified, here's some excellent advice on how to get through January, giving you a better chance of not fucking up the rest of the year.
GET THAT GUY OUT OF YOUR HOUSE
He's really outstayed his welcome considering no-one has any idea who he is. He's apparently Rich's friend but no-one knows who Rich is either. Was he at the club? No idea. He's not really doing anything wrong, but then he's not really doing anything right. All he has is half a pouch of Golden Virginia, a twitch and he's pretty low on chat. He's had the comfy half of the sofa for about five hours now. How has he not needed a piss? WHAT'S WRONG WITH HIM? Whatever you do, do not go to work, give him the keys and say "just let yourself out mate". God knows what you'll come home to.
SHUT THE FUCK UP ABOUT YOUR DETOX
You know what's even more boring than somebody telling you how much they drink? Someone telling you how much they don't drink. Seriously, shut the fuck up about your detox. Yeah we know it's January and you've come into the new year with those pangs of Ferrero Rocher-induced "guilt", but you haven't really done anything wrong, you've just eaten some chocolate.
Blah blah, detox, blah. People who you used to like start widening their eyes and talking about gym memberships and superfoods. Don't become one of them and start the new year by losing friends.
MAKE SURE YOU'RE REGISTERED TO VOTE
It's the general election this May, so if you're of voting age and reading this, make sure you're ready to cast your vote. While I (kind of) like Russell Brand, he's fundamentally wrong about the whole "don't bother voting" thing, it's a complete nonsense.
Use your vote on whoever you want – I'm not here to tell you who to side with, but we do live in a democracy that enables you to have a say. I think we'd all agree that the country could be run better, so with plenty of time to research each party, get ready to hit the polling stations come summer.
DON'T MAKE RESOLUTIONS
You're a human being. You will fuck this up. You will only want to break the promise you made to yourself and then scold yourself for doing it. Don't leave yourself open to that brand of self-flagellation by just now making resolutions at all. It's easier and you won't let anybody (yourself) down.
TRY AND BOOK A HOLIDAY TO GET OUT OF THE CITY FOR ONCE
If you've ignored our important advice imploring you not to make resolutions and you've quit stuffing your face with Marlboro Lights and gin and tonics, you may have a little extra money to play with in January. If that's the case, try and book a holiday so you have something actually pleasant on the horizon that breaks up the relentless, deafening monotony of Real Life.
If you go to parks during January you will see a lot of people doing exercise right in front of you. What they are doing is building a myth that they do this all year round. They don't. They bought some lycra over the Christmas period after standing in front of the mirror one too many times and swearing to themselves that they're going to nail down a "regime". By February they'll be at home, ordering pizza, using their new gym gear to wipe sauce off their chins. In January, don't let them fool you into believing they're superhuman – they're just having a quick go at maintaining their health. Soon enough the relentless, deafening monotony of Real Life will interrupt. Stay out of the parks.
DISOWN A MEMBER OF YOUR FAMILY FOR ABSOLUTELY NO REASON
OK OK, joking.
CANCEL THAT AMAZON PRIME SUBSCRIPTION PRONTO
Remember all that panicked, last-minute, online shopping you did because you're a waste of atoms? You signed up for an Amazon Prime trial didn't you? The service is a siren on the rocks – what at first seems like a beautiful saviour could in fact slowly but surely financially ruin you. Don't get to the start of February feeling like a total mug when you check your balance to find a direct debit straight to Amazon even though you haven't ordered a single thing.
January is a period for getting ready for the year ahead. Nothing really happens in January, everyone knows that. So don't spend your weekends trying to get on it as if it's still Christmas and everyone's really up for it. They aren't, which is why going out is going to be fairly short on vibe. You know squirrels, right? They really seem to benefit from hibernating during the winter months and spend the rest of the year running everywhere, even up trees. Could you run up a tree? No. Could you catch a squirrel? Definitely not. Take some pointers from the little critters – you don't need to stop drinking, but just play the game and recharge.
DON'T POST ON FACEBOOK ABOUT HOW GREAT 2015 IS GOING TO BE
Posting things like "2015 come at me" or "New year, I am in you" with further explanation of just how and why you're going to absolutely own 2015 will drive everyone insane. Do not do it, it is boring, it is self-absorbed and will lead to raised eyebrows at the end of the year when you've owned absolutely nothing and still complain at the pub about how you don't like your job, your partner, your house, your friends, your family or your fish, without taking action and killing off any of them.