Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more


What are your goals and resolutions for 2014?


With Christmas over and the festive period of over-indulgence behind us, Claire asks “what’s next?” January - the season for making New Year’s Resolutions.

Claire Harries_SNT

Claire Harries is Student Nursing Times’s learning disability branch student editor

At this time of year, many of us tell ourselves “this year will be different”; making promises to eat healthily, lose weight and maybe become a better person. The gyms will be full of regulars complaining about the newbies hogging the machines, well aware that things will return to normal in a few short weeks.

I think it is important to make our resolutions achievable and measurable, as opposed to vague aims for the year ahead, and I’ve decided to be more spontaneous and adventurous in 2014. On January 2nd, I woke up with this in mind and decided to go for a walk.

Bet you’re thinking, what’s so exciting about that?

Well, I was going to walk up Pen Y Fan – the highest peak south of the Snowdonia mountain range.

I packed a bag with food, extra layers, fluid, lights and more food, before setting off on my adventure. It was raining, cold and foggy, but I made it to the top of the mountain, making time to take a cheeky ‘selfie’ at the summit.


Getting back to my car should have been straightforward, but not for me. I spotted a family through the fog who appeared to know what they were doing, so decided to follow them. I had a gut feeling that I had made a mistake and, a few hours later, I reached a car park that wasn’t mine.

I asked passers-by where I was, and was informed the only way to get back to my car was by going back up and over the mountain. That wasn’t an option - it was around 4pm and would be getting dark soon.

Pen Y Fan_fog

Pen Y Fan shrouded in fog

In the end, a friendly dog walker saved my life and drove me to my car which was 15 miles away!

This botched adventure left me feeling like something of a kumquat.

The moral of the story is: don’t feel pressured into following the crowd. This applies to us in the workplace where it can be easy to fall in with existing practice on a ward. Step off the elevator every now and then and make sure you’re on the right floor and take a minute to check you’re going in the direction you should be.

I am of the opinion that I have been both spontaneous and adventurous enough to last the rest of the year but I think I may make some small and simple resolutions that will be easy to stick to as a student nurse:

  • Take an extra two minutes to sit and talk with a patient, cleaner, family member or healthcare assistant. Hopefully, this will lead to achieving my personal goals whilst making those around me feel valued and appreciated.
  • Read one extra piece of research each week so that I can expand my knowledge.
  • Lastly, I’m going to write down the reasons I decided to become a nurse and resolve to look at it each time I feel pressured or want to give up. With a bit of luck, I will be reminded that I’m here for the right reasons and that it will be worth it in the end.


What are your goals and resolutions for 2014?


Claire Harries is Student Nursing Times’s learning disability branch student editor


Readers' comments (2)

  • michael stone

    I don't make resolutions at the turn of the year, but I was listening to something on Radio 4 about behaviour change, and it makes sense.

    The tip was to change your enviroment, to support your desired objective: the other side to this, was that thinking to yourself 'I am going to eat less biscuits' actively places 'biscuits' into your mind - so it might lead to eating more biscuits, perversely.

    So what you have to do, to eat less biscuits, is to buy fewer packets of biscuits, so that when at home you are not so often 'presented with' a packet of biscuits.

    This idea, is esentially to support your resolution, by planning your enviroment in a way that promotes the chosen outcome: I suppose 'sticking rigidly to a shopping list' to avoid impulse buying, is loosely similar.

    Although I suspect it works better for 'stopping doing things' than for doing new things: I'm not sure how to apply this 'change the enviroment' one to 'climbing more hills' (don't holiday in East Anglia ?).

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

  • Gerry Jones

    Thats quite an interesting observation Michael, by trying to avoid doing something like eating biscuits, or smoking, the very thought in your mind makes is far harder to achieve it, I dont have the answers sorry, but I agree with your observations.

    As Claire pointed out I am one of the guilty amateur bodybuilders, aka dumb meathead, that complain every January lol. Not really, I admire their efforts and hope some succeed, but realise sadly that it does take a lot of pain and commitment. Where I train, this young, heavily obese young man has been given a free access pass, no instruction, no training, no guidance, i really dont think its the solution to the underlying issues.
    I've trained in a gym for many many Years, not saying how many lol, initially to overcome the effects of my disability, I have Spinabifida, I manage well, then I got hooked to the Gym, and building.

    I think if theres a morale to this story, anything in life takes time and effort, and a lot of help in some cases, thats where skilled professionals become essential, I have had to rely on many health care staff to achieve this level of mobility, and I will never be to proud to say that every day.

    My less than informed opinion, sorry.

    Unsuitable or offensive? Report this comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions. Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.