Culture

Make This New Year Different By Making Active Positive Changes Instead Of Overwhelming Resolutions

You will probably hear the word resolution like a million times in the next couple of weeks. I am here to say: f*ck that! The word “resolution” alone makes me cringe. It makes me want to steer clear of it. What’s really depressing is hearing that word makes me feel guilty, and I haven’t even done anything. That’s probably where the guilt comes from. I feel guilty for not doing enough. Making resolutions puts pressure on me that I don’t need. Here’s what I can offer you is some simple words of wisdom in the New Year. If you’re wondering what gives me the authority to provide advice, all I can say is that I am in a better place than I was a year ago. So perhaps what helped me can help you.

Do you want to be happier? It’s all about perspective.

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We always want more. We know that if this one thing were different in our lives, we’d be happier. But when that one thing comes and goes, we’re back to square one. Partying and drinking aren’t going to make you happy, and neither is overworking or posting a ton of images on social media. Happiness isn’t something that is attained. Happiness is a perception. It’s something that we can achieve with our minds and our hearts. Happiness is about being content, and I don’t mean settling, but rather understanding that your life is good and you are blessed, even when it gets tough, you will always be okay. 

Want to lose weight? Making small changes can go a long way.

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Resolutions are all about losing weight, eating better, and exercising more. If you’re already doing all of those things, then more power to you, but I am not obsessed with a healthier lifestyle. I do, however, care about being healthy, but that doesn’t mean I am giving up Five Guys or ice cream. In the past year, I lost ten pounds, and I don’t even know how I did it. That may not be a lot of weight for some people, but for me, it’s a big deal, and I don’t want to gain it back. So here’s what I did, from what I can tell that made a difference. I attempted to work out at least 30 minutes a day. I took my dog for more walks. I only had alcohol when I went out. I tried to cut back on bread and did so by attempting to cut it out from my meals at home alone. I took more vitamin supplements, and I also incorporated apple cider vinegar into every glass of water I had. That’s it! 

Learn to be less selfish. 

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Some people are all about self-care and loving yourself. Yes, you should love yourself and take care of yourself, but are you good to others? We’re not talking to parents who are already spread thin, but to people who are consumed with their personal happiness 24/7. In the spirit of giving during the holidays, we should take that kindness and spread it year-round. If you make peace with the fact that this life isn’t all about you, will you undoubtedly become a better person for it?

How to be proactive in 2020 without feeling like a failure.

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If you have one (or a million) goals for yourself in 2020, do not kill yourself over trying to finish them quickly. Give yourself some time, breath, it’s going to be okay. I am a master overthinking, making lists, and having numerous planners, and that doesn’t always work for me. What does work is being aware of your days and staying active about what you want to accomplish? 

Each day, after you’ve had some coffee, hop on to your computer and email yourself a list of things you want to get done that day. This way, you are at least aware of your goals. If by the end of the day, you didn’t complete those things, there’s always tomorrow. 

Rest a little more.

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I know I just said that it’s essential to be active, but it’s also crucial to sleep. I’ve been getting more sleep lately, and it’s helped me out so much. I sometimes go to bed at 9:30 p.m. — typically, I go to bed around 10:30 p.m. — and I am ready to go by 6 a.m. I’m a morning person. Everyone is different, so what matters is that you get at least eight hours of sleep. 

So how do you sleep when it’s hard to sleep? Don’t have caffeine after 4 p.m., have some chamomile tea, which will help you unwind, and get off your phone while you’re in bed.

Get offline and experience the wonders around you.

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Speaking of getting off your phone before you go to bed, try to get off your phone as much as possible. I’m on my phone always, whether for work or just because I’m bored. But I’m learning that is such a sad way to live. I am missing out on the beautiful things that are around me. Yes, our country is in great despair. People all over the world are suffering immensely, but consuming myself with that information isn’t helping matters. You will never be able to truly be off-the-grid but attempting to not be on your phone or on social media will give allow you to talk to people face-to-face, to take in your environment, and overall be more present. At the end of the day, it won’t matter how many followers you have, but about how well you lived your life.

READ: Throw Away Your Piggy Bank And Follow These 20 Hot Financial Tips To Help You Jumpstart 2020

This Indigenous Group From Michoacán Is Getting Ready To Celebrate A Pre-Hispanic New Year: The ‘New Fire’

Culture

This Indigenous Group From Michoacán Is Getting Ready To Celebrate A Pre-Hispanic New Year: The ‘New Fire’

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With all the Chinese New Year celebrations we saw this week, we wanted to highlight another Spring New Year party. Based on a very different calendar and with very different traditions; the Purépecha people of Mexico are also celebrating a New Year’s celebration soon. And their traditions hail from a distant past.

Each year, the Purépechas light a fire to celebrate the new year, according to the ancient mesoamerican calendar.

Every year, since 1983, the Purépechas of Michoacán celebrate the new year on the nights of the 1st and the 2nd of February. The lighting ceremony of the New Fire, goes back to the pre-Hispanic period.

The Purépechas are descendants of a pre-columbian empire.

Purépechas today, are concentrated in the northwestern part of the state of Michoacán in Mexico. Their calendar is similar to the Mesoamerican calendar —a system that emerged with the Olmecs, and was passed down to Mayans, Zapotecs and Aztecs.

The most widely known version of the calendar is the Aztec version.

The ‘piedra del sol’ is one of the most photographed pieces in the Museum of Anthropology of Mexico City. The use of this calendar was halted in 1521, when the Christian calendar and rituals were implemented by the Spanish.

Like its variants, the Purépecha calendar also consisted of 18 months.

Each month was made up by 20 days, for a total of 360 days in a year. To keep the calendar in alignments with the cycle of the sun, Purépechas would add 5 days periodically —and since they didn’t align with any month, those days were considered ominous.

In 1983, a group of Purépecha intellectuals and community activists reintroduced the use of the old calendar by celebrating its new year.

This date is marked by the night when the constellation of Orion reaches its highest point in the sky. In the past, this meant it was time to make offerings to Kurhíkuaeri, the god of the Sun and of fire. It usually happens on the night of February 1-2.

The Purépecha new year is now celebrated with what is called the New Fire ceremony.

The New Fire ceremony is a Mesoamerican ritual, but originally it was performed once every 52 years, corresponding to the cycle of Pleiades; it was also the day when the civil and ritual calendars coincided.

Today, the New Fire ceremony has been repurposed so that the celebration of the new year can move from town to town in the territory once defined by the Purépecha Empire.

The ritual is carried out in a different town each year. The new village receives the Old Fire from the community that guarded it during the previous year, and lights the New Fire that remains under its protection until it is delivered to the next guardian.

The first time this festivity took place after being reinstated, it was held in Tzintzuntzan.

Since then it has been taking place every year, being an important element for the strengthening and cohesion of the Purépecha people.

The purpose of the festivity, is to keep traditions alive and to rescue cultural elements of the past.

“Even though the New Fire ceremony is the most representative aspect of this indigenous people, it is one of reflection rather than religious or political in nature,” says Patricia Terán Escobar, a researcher at the National Institute for Anthropology and History (INAH). “Some of the objectives are to rescue the collective memory and all the cultural elements of the past, such as the ancient Purépecha tradition of verbally transmitting knowledge from one generation to the next.”

The Purépecha council, Consejo de Cargueros del Fuego Nuevo Purépecha, approved the request for this year’s host.

This year’s Fuego Nuevo celebration was disputed between the villages of Ario de Rosales, Zacapu, Comanja, Erongarícuaro and Capacuaro. The latter was the winner and will be the bearer of the new fire for 2020. The village of Capacuaro was chosen to honor its over 500 years of history.

Capacuaro is one of the most ancient Purépecha communities.

“It was a necessary stop for tradespeople and travelers who were making the journey between Paracho and Uruapan —a trek that took travelers through the mountains, across the ‘sierra P’urhépecha’, a road that Don Vasco de Quiroga, a famous evangelist, often trekked.

This year, the New Fire —aka. New Year ceremony— will take place on February 1 in Capácuaro, which will receive the Old Fire from Cuanajo. Capácuaro is located north of the city of Uruapan, near Paracho.

Lizzo Had The Most Inspiring Glow Up Of The Decade And If Her Story Doesn’t Motivate You, I Don’t Know What Will

Entertainment

Lizzo Had The Most Inspiring Glow Up Of The Decade And If Her Story Doesn’t Motivate You, I Don’t Know What Will

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We first started hearing the name Lizzo in 2018, but the singer became a household name in 2019 when she skyrocketed to fame thanks to her incredibly catchy and positive music. Lizzo’s body positivity, self-love and no BS attitude has made her a huge success—but it wasn’t always like that.

It’s not like the singer found “overnight success.” Her huge hits weren’t only one year in the making. 

For a decade, the artist had been working on her music and trying to break out in the entertainment industry. On New Year’s Eve, Lizzo remembered the start of the decade, which was much more difficult than we knew. In 2009, Lizzo was working odd jobs, living out of her car, and had just lost her father. 

The singer took a trip down memory lane posting a major TB picture on Instagram.

Lizzo looked back on the past decade and reflected on some of the troubling times she went through to get to where she is now. “2009 was the year my daddy died. 2009 was the year I lived in my car and cried myself to sleep on Thanksgiving. 2009 I was a girl in Houston, Texas, with no plan, no hope, no will to carry on,” Lizzo began.  Then she reflected on the year that brought her insane success, “2019 is the year my album and song went number 1. 2019 is the year I told my mama, ‘I can buy you a house.’ 2019 I am a woman with a 20/20 vision of the future. Anything can happen in a decade. Tomorrow is the beginning of your anything. Thanks for the ride 2019. Here we go 2020!”

Lizzo had quite an impressive year this 2019

Now the singer’s nominated for eight Grammys, has performed on countless awards show stages, headlined SNL, and was Time magazine’s Entertainer of the Year —just to name a few of her merits. Plus, she’s buying her mom a new house, how’s that for a glow up?

She even worked as a sign spinner before, and now she’s “the artist who defined 2019.”

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Don’t stop…. we need you. 2020 is yours for the taking.

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Lizzo is a true inspiration and the best example to follow your dreams, because that’s exactly what she did, and look where it took her. Before Lizzo was the fabulous rapper, flautist, and singer that she is today; she was working odd jobs, like sign-spinning, to make ends meet. “Don’t stop … we need you. 2020 is yours for the taking,” she captioned a post showing her at the beginning of the decade working as a sign spinner for Liberty Taxes and then the promo for her SNL debut. 

Lizzo celebrated New Year’s Eve feeling all of the feels. 

Now that we know just how far she’s come, it’s no surprise that Lizzo was in her feels on New Year’s Eve. The singer has plenty to celebrate, but also a lot to look back on. “NYE MOODS,” she tweeted featuring a few glamorous images. 

Sometimes we forget to acknowledge all the blood, sweat, and tears, artists have shed to get to where they are now.

Other artists identified with Lizzo’s come-up throughout the decade, and shared their own. Adam Rifkin, a writer and director, replied to the rapper’s tweet: “Sometimes it takes 10 years to get that one year that will change your life.” 

Then he shared a full-moment post from Lin-Manuel Miranda.

@ifindkarma

The composer, lyricist, singer, actor, producer, and playwright, worked on his successful Broadway musical Hamilton for years before it found its place.

Lizzo’s having the best time of her life, period.

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U ready?

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“U ready?” she asked her 7.2 million followers, after ringing in the New Year living her absolute best life —And honestly, I don’t think we are. This past year, Lizzo already served us so much great music and self-love, and we’re ready to bet there’s so much more to come.