It is a new year, so that means it is going to be a new me. I remember saying this each year to myself. A new me meant setting up New Year’s resolutions. However, looking back, that saying never stuck well with me. I’d set New Year’s resolutions, only to learn that I couldn’t keep up with them, and eventually failed to keep the promise to myself.
One day, I learned to change the way I wanted to look at the New Year. So, I decided instead of a “new me,” I wanted to be a better version of myself than the previous year. So why is it that we set New Year’s resolutions? We set them because it is a promise that we make to ourselves.
First, have you ever wondered where this tradition came from and why is it that we continue to follow this tradition each year? According to research, it was about 4000 years ago in Babylon, where the earliest recorded celebration of a new year was held. The Babylonians made promises to get on the right side of all their gods. They believed this would help them to start off the New Year on the right foot. The resolutions continued with the Romans, where Julius Cesar declared January 1st to be celebrated as the New Year.
As we entered a new decade and new year, many of us promised ourselves that we would lose weight, exercise more, use our phones less, improve our finances, mange our stress better, improve relationships, or practice better self-care. Those are just some of the most common goals that we set. We set goals for ourselves to form new habits but also because we genuinely want to improve ourselves.
So how many of us actually succeed in keeping up with our resolutions? According to research, 60 percent of us set New Year’s resolutions, and only about 8 percent are successful in achieving them.
We all start off the year with a positive mindset. We wake up that first day of the New Year feeling motivated and ready to achieve the goals we’ve set for ourselves. Only to learn as time goes on, how hard it is to commit, and slowly we feel discouraged because we have failed to achieve our goals. So how can we prevent this from happening?
Here are some tips to keep in mind as you’re setting those New Year’s resolutions.
- Make your goals small and attainable. Think of them as small goals that can help you achieve the bigger goal.
- Recognize what you are doing well. Take time out of each day to focus on your strengths
- Congratulate yourself! Give yourself credit for each small step you make. Recognize each of your accomplishments, even if it means getting out of bed that day. It’s about baby steps.
- Give yourself positive affirmations. Practice that positive self-talk, and practice it around your family and friends.
It is a New Year. It is a new decade. If you are one of the people who woke up on the 1st of January feeling determined to keep that promise to better yourself, then believe that you can do it. One of our core values is to help you in being the best version of yourself. So, why not start today?
Written by: Minh Bui