It’s that time of year again! New Year Resolutions! Yep, people are talking (and writing). Well, it’s a long and accepted tradition. One I will not be participating in. I’m saying no to making or writing down new year resolutions. I guess I would have to say that I’m a realist who occasionally experiences periods of optimism. The reality for me is… it’s a waste of time.
The practice of new year resolutions can be traced all the way back to the ancient Babylonians. According to a really interesting article by Alison Kroulek earlier in 2017, these early people made resolutions to keep themselves in good standing with their gods. I’m thinking they also made them to keep in good standing (or to at least show an effort) with their neighbors! You know, things like, “I will return that reed basket I borrowed as soon as I finish with it… not six months later.” “I will keep my donkey from leaving droppings in your yard.” Being a better neighbor got them points.
The making of new year resolutions was also a popular practice with the ancient Romans. They offered up resolutions to Janus, the god of beginnings, endings, and the (can you guess?)… new year! Studies also show that the progression of the concept of new year resolutions was most likely due to the spread of the Protestant movement through Europe and beyond. Well, eventually the religious aspect was lost and the making of new year resolutions become more of a social thing. And now that we have facebook and twitter, we get to see and share them!! Whoopee.
Ok, so do YOU make new year resolutions? Or, like me, do you just say No. Want some statistics from 2017? Too bad, here are a few. According to statisticbrain.com, 41% of Americans make resolutions. 42% of Americans never make resolutions. That leaves 17% who from time to time, will make some. Of those who DO make new year resolutions, slightly over 9% feel that they succeed in attaining their goals. Last year, the top resolutions had to do with “getting healthier” and “spending less/saving more”. However, they way I see it, we spend money to attempt to get healthier… so we just blew the second resolution. Another top resolution in 2017 was to “read more”. Now I LOVE to read. However, in the age of youtube and audio books… I kind of figure that’s another resolution not attained for a lot of people. And the “be kinder” resolution? Yeah right. Turn on the news.
I say NO to new year resolutions, but if you say YES then I applaud you. They are supposed to be good motivators. Not for me. I’ve tried. Years ago. I find, they just aggravate me. If there is something I need to be better at, or to attain to, I don’t need to write them down at the beginning of a new year. I remind myself pretty much every day, that I have these things to strive for. Well, that’s me. May your resolutions be obtainable and fruitful.
Happy New Year.
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