Life Lessons

The Fresh Start Effect

Happy New Year!!!

Welcome to 2022🥳

I delve a little bit into psychology today as you might have wondered what the title of this post means.

The fresh start effect is a phrase coined in psychology to represent the phenomenon of people looking to a major landmark such as a milestone birthday, a new month, or a new year, it could even just be a new day like Monday which often symbolises the start of a new week. They could see these dates as an opportunity to restart something or simply start afresh, and research has shown that this works well to improve performances in some cases.

There’s just something about knowing you get to work on a clean slate that gives one the motivation to put in more effort into a task or goal.

However, to take good advantage of this and get tangible results, we must first evaluate past performances in retrospect. Only when we’ve properly analysed previous shortcomings, and looked into ways to improve and not repeat past mistakes, can this effect truly be helpful.

Thinking of a fresh start without learning from previous experiences could turn out to be counterproductive. One might simply end up worse than before instead of better.

Photo by Debby Hudson on Unsplash

You might have heard a lot about journaling for the new year. To be able to achieve the desired goals, it’s more beneficial to have concrete written notes about everything than to just think it all up in your head.

I’ll also have you know that the fresh start effect is biblical.

Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before,
Philippians 3:13 KJV

In the above scripture, we see our dear apostle Paul talk about what it means for him to leave the past behind and press forward to the new.

It’s amazing to note, however, that the fresh start effect need not be applied to every situation that involves a key or significant date. In cases where one has already been doing well, it would be disadvantageous to just scrub off the progress made so far. To begin again is not easy, and would be unnecessary except there have been records of past failures or a strong dissatisfaction with results so far and thus a need for change.

Whatever the case might be, it’s highly important to learn how this fresh start effect affects us, when and how to apply it or not. One thing that is constant though, is the need to reflect on how far we’ve come and how we’re doing and whether or not we need to begin again or simply try to improve on what has already been working for us.

It’s roughly 3 days into the new year, what are your thoughts so far? No pressure here, just living and breathing as the day comes.

Have a wonderful day, week, month and year ahead.

Love and Grace,

© Zizi, 2021.


6 thoughts on “The Fresh Start Effect”

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