Ring in the New Year with these resolutions

As 2016 washed by, so did everyone’s goals and resolutions they set out to accomplish over the year.  Now people create new goals and have a new determined mindset as 2017 begins. This yearly repetition of making a promising New Year’s resolution, breaking it, and subsequently forgetting what you were hoping to achieve is a cycle that never seems to make any progress.

From my own experience, making New Year’s resolutions are just a way to convince yourself you are starting fresh. As the clock strikes twelve on Dec. 31,  people go from a gloomy attitude about life, to a new optimistic view of the world. “New Year, New me,” cry the masses. I can’t fathom how people can change their attitudes in a span of a minute.

Often, New Year’s resolutions are too vague to actually be accomplished. According to a 2016 survey concerning this year’s top resolutions by nielsen.com, 28 percent of the population chooses a resolution along the lines of “Enjoy life to the fullest,” which we all know is a rather difficult idea to quantitate.

Resolutions also restrict change to a few weeks of the year, so are a bit counterproductive. People get stuck in the rut of the current year, waiting for the new year to come around and save them by presenting new, exciting opportunities. In reality, New Year’s day is not going to magically change anything in life and it shouldn’t be expected to.

The argument that the new year ignites a “fresh start” is not true. Problems from the previous year don’t just disappear. People don’t have to wait until the new year to make a meaningful resolution. Changes can be made at any time; they don’t need to start at the beginning of the year for them to work. Making a resolution is a growing process, and it doesn’t have a definite start or definite finish. The resolutions that we make give us an incentive that we can stop doing whatever we’re doing as soon as the next year arrives, creating an unhelpful environment for people who need drastic change but don’t have the will to keep going strong.  It feels almost as an obligation to make new year’s resolution, that you owe something to the world to be a better person.  When the new year strides in, we push our problems or feelings aside that reside from the previous year just to please our new optimistic mindsets.

We should stop conforming to this implied norm of making a resolution on the first day of the new year and start making resolutions every day. Deciding to be a better person and to better society isn’t a goal that should just be forgotten, it should be worked toward throughout a lifetime.