New Year’s is a celebration of pondering on the old and bringing in the new.
Essentially, it’s comparable to taking a fresh new step in life — one that requires making a resolution, whether that be losing weight or overcoming an addiction. New Year’s has been an important traditional celebration for people all over the world.
According to History.com, New Year’s resolutions began 4,000 years ago with the ancient Babylonians. While resolutions then were more religiously oriented, the concept of New Year’s resolutions live on today.
Not everyone does New Year’s resolutions, but for students like Michael Pastrana, a freshman studying accounting, resolutions have helped him grow into the person he is today.
“I’ve been doing resolutions for the longest time with my family,” Pastrana said. “Some are family-oriented goals while others are more personal. I just love the concept of being able to make yourself better and others around you by learning how to make and keep commitments.”
According to recent research from Statistic Brain Research Institute, as many as 45% of Americans say they make New Year’s resolutions, while only 8% are successful in achieving them.
“It’s not always easy keeping year-long commitments,” Pastrana said. “I think the importance of New Year’s resolutions isn’t all about who can last the longest in keeping them, but more about how willing you are to make the effort in at least trying to improve yourself. That’s what really matters.”
According to Finder, about 74% of Americans are willing to make a personal goal in an effort to better themselves.
“I feel like New Year’s resolutions can sometimes be portrayed in a bad way,” said Palmer Giblette, a sophomore studying computer engineering. “While it’s good to make goals and improve yourself, sometimes things like that should be more personal instead of gloated about. The importance of self-improving isn’t about making it a public event, but making it something that’s special and intimate to you.”
According Joe Ferrari, a professor of psychology at DePaul University in Chicago, “When you keep resolutions a secret, no one is going to check up on you. You’re only accountable to yourself.”
Ferrari suggests publicly sharing your personal goals will help you be accountable to others besides yourself.
As a way to make your New Year’s resolution stick throughout 2021, Harvard Medical School suggests to dream big and to break it up into smaller steps. Make a list so you don’t get discouraged. Don’t give up by trying to do it all at once. Pace yourself.
Let’s ring in the New Year with positivity and a sense of determination.