Are New Years Resolutions good or bad?
It’s that time of year again. Last year has come and gone and a new year is just beginning, which means it’s time to start reflecting on the good and the bad and start conjuring up things to do differently. After all, what better time than when something drastic changes on the calendar (aka the last number of the four-digit year. :p )
For some reason, we see New Years as a time for fresh starts. It’s just a symbol of our calendar starting over and yet we see it as an opportunity to turn over a new leaf in our lives, start over on those big projects or life goals. As such, it’s a time that some people look forward to (those who complete their resolutions, lucky people), and some people dread it (those who don’t always meet their resolutions.) But the real question becomes:
Is setting new years resolutions good or bad?
New Years Resolutions can be great opportunities for people to finally get their butts in gear and get on top of all those projects and goals they want to meet. Some of the more popular ones revolve around health. People want to be healthy, eat healthy, workout more, etc. These are great! People wanting to take better care of themselves and be healthier are fantastic goals and should always be encouraged.
Other goals could be teaching yourself to do something new, finally finishing that project you’ve been putting off, or just challenging yourself to get out of your comfort zone. Whatever it is, New Years Resolutions can be great motivators for finally doing that thing you’ve been wanting to do. What’s more is that thousands (maybe millions) of people are doing the same thing. So, finding a partner who wants to reach the same goal and who will keep you on track is easy to find!
Ah! But let’s be real. How many of you set your resolution as going to the gym? I see you out there! More importantly, I see you at the gym! I know who you people are because you’re the ones who go for a few months and then slowly dwindle away. (Don’t worry! I’ve been that person before, too. :p) Life becomes too busy, or you have other things to do, and it just becomes something you do a couple times a week, and then not at all. So… maybe next year?
The problem with that is the stress. Not reaching goals can be very stressful for people, which only makes reaching goals that much harder. Very few people will actually want to go to the gym when they’re stressed. They’re more likely to want to be more lazy or eat more (I’m the latter group :p), which is the exact opposite of what your goal was. Not only are you not being healthy, you’re likely regressing into the unhealthy (whether physically or mentally because of stress.)
Honestly, I think resolutions don’t work for a couple reasons.
1) The changing over of a new calendar only comes once a year, meaning you have to stick to your goal for 12 straight months without reaching any achievements.
2) The changing over of the calendar year really doesn’t mean much outside of changing a number on the date you sign. Therefore, it’s not really a big motivator for people.
It’s like writing a query letter for your novel, you need to have stakes for your character (aka you). If you decide you need to do something, but there are no repercussions if you don’t do it, who cares? What happens?
It’s for this reason that I think new years resolutions don’t work. There aren’t enough stakes to keep us motivated throughout the year and we often don’t set any little goals to maintain the motivation we started the new year with.
However, this is just my opinion. What do you think about setting New Years Resolutions? Are you someone who’s completed them?
And check out my discussion from last week:
“Love at First Sight“