New Year Resolutions are for the Fickle Minded

The New year brings a New Dawn. New Day. New Beginning.

It’s good to make and keep resolutions. Today is 1st Jan 2018. More than half the world would make New Year Resolution (NYR). Most will fail. The very practice is conceptually flawed.

The Tradition.

The history goes back to the Babylonians & the Romans, who vowed on a day or during a specific period, to do something through the year. The vows were made to the Gods; entailed a much bigger commitment.

The New Year Resolution.

In Modern times, as part of NYR, we commit to ourselves (or family) to start or to stop doing something. The most common resolutions are:-

  1. Stay Healthy
  2. Lose weight
  3. Enjoy life to fullest
  4. Save more
  5. Spend more time with family/friend

Few lesser talked NYRs; which constitute a high percentage; are giving up habits like Drinking, smoking, and other more dangerous substances.

Simple Observation.

I haven’t made any NYR but do indulge in physical activity regularly. Mostly a sport or jog, sometimes both. I am in Abu Dhabi for a few days, my normal schedule is broken, people I play with regularly aren’t here. So it’s just a 5 KM jog here; along the Corniche.

Corniche, at Abu Dhabi. Popular for jogs and walks in morning

Normally, I see a lot of people taking a walk, a few jogging. Today, most of the fitness enthusiasts were missing.

So much for the NYRs, where Health & Fitness top the charts.

Surveys and Studies.

A google search on “keeping new year’s resolution” yielded 4.7 Million results. Amazing, how much people have written about making and keeping New Year Resolutions.

Amazed to see so many results for the search

Also, see the top stories on google today.

The top stories are the same; it’s insane.

As if the articles, guides & tips weren’t enough; keeping pace with technology, people have created numerous Android and iPhone apps to help keep track of resolutions.

Yet people struggle to keep resolutions and often fail. No surprises. The very fact that there are millions of articles and tons of apps is an indicator.

Numerous studies by Universities and Scholars infer that over 88% fail in keeping New Year Resolutions. So much for an age-old tradition. And all the talk, everywhere.

The Flaw and The Fickle Mind.

If we see, NYRs are very simple things. Mostly, things we should anyway be doing; keeping fit, spending time with family, give up vices. Nothing extraordinary. So why do most people fail?

New year comes one in a year. These things need to be done consistently.

To make a resolution and keep it, a strong will is required. The very fact that one is waiting for New Year; indicates lack of drive. The New Year may help, give the push, start it; won’t help sustain. Apps can help, but it can’t do it for you. The motivation to shed the extra pounds, balance work-life, give up vices etc. has to come from within.

When one knows it needs to be done, why wait until the new year? The very practice of NYR makes us procrastinate, rather than take action. So when we do keep resolutions, the procrastination takes over the action in a couple of days. Result: Failure.

The Solution.

Goodbye New Year Resolutions. Set Goals. Periodic. Specific targets, dates, schedule. For e.g. exercise every working day for 45 mins. Weekends 2 hours. work on abs, hips, and thighs. Loose 5 Kg in 30 days. 8 in 60, 10 in 90. Make a schedule. A workout plan. A diet plan. Start today. Follow it relentlessly. Do Not Procrastinate. That’s the only way to make it happen.

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