Going into a new year (and a new decade!), unquestionably you have heard ‘Veganuary’ or ‘Movember’ drift around. Months, such as January and November, get hijacked by campaigns in order to encourage people to do something in particular. Whether it be to fundraise for a certain charity or simply to enhance your own well-being, lots of these initiatives have garnered global attention.

The most popular examples of these include:

  1. January: ‘Veganuary’ – encourages people to go vegan
  2. January: ‘Dryathlon’ – encourages people to not drink any alcohol and fundraise for Cancer Research
  3. October: ‘Stoptober’ – encourages smokers to give up cigarettes (introduced by the NHS)
  4. November: ‘Movember’ – encourages people to grow their moustaches and fundraise for men’s health
  5. December: ‘Decembeard’ – encourages people to grow their beards and fundraise for bowel cancer

The use of social media has increased the number of people participating, since the people taking part can talk to others doing the challenge and support one another. In addition, the account can spread tips motivating people to continue and complete the challenge that they are undertaking. An example of this includes this account based on ‘Veganuary’ – https://www.instagram.com/weareveganuary/?hl=en.

As a 15 year old, I am yet to try many of these challenges – however the one I have happily completed was ‘Veganuary’ at the beginning of 2019. As I am still vegan, I spread my message of veganism to many people I meet and now they are implementing one or two vegan evening meals each week. This chain reaction of conversations with one another spreads the message very quickly and so trying something completely new can have positive impacts in ways I never even realised.

This article was not for me to tell you to go vegan for January or even to grow a moustache in November, it was for me to tell you to try something new. If that actually is to go vegan, that is not the point; the purpose is to embrace something new in 2020 and go at it with open eyes and an open mind. Do not shut something down without giving it a go because, according to Paul McCartney (a famous ethical vegan), “It could be the best thing you ever did”.