New Year Resolutions 2015

Don’s Diary

It will not be long until we hear “Have you made a New Year’s Resolution yet?” It is likely to be part conversation and part to remind us that the New Year is all but here.

As likely as not it will be a resolution will be about health and fitness, having more family time, getting out of debt and retirement plans later in the year. It will be a promise that you make to yourself to start doing something good or stop doing something bad on the first day of the year. The resolutions that I like are those are those made when you finally realise that tomorrow is the first day of the rest of your life. This usually occurs after you recognise that we are not here on earth now for practise – this is as good as it will get, and everything is not your father’s or mother’s fault. It is called growing up but some never seem to do so. A New Year is not needed to initiate planning and action: it can start straight away. Wishes and hopes are no substitute for resolutions and commitment to action. Don’t waste a day of your life. Associate yourself with achievers, with “lifters” not “leaners”.

We are told that there are ancient religious origins to the custom. For example the Babylonians made promises to their Yaois at the start of each year that they would return borrowed objects and pay their debts. The Romans began each year by making promises to the god Janus, for whom the month of January is named. There are other religious parallels to this tradition. It is usually about self improvement.

However, we are told that a UK study in 2007 involving 3,000 people showed that 88% of those who make New Year resolutions fail despite the fact that 52% of the study's participants were confident of success at the when the resolution was made. I wonder how many failed goals were hopes and wishes rather than Resolutions of Resolve.

Making a New Year’s Resolution, in a management sense, is goal setting. Commendable! The success or otherwise will depend to a large extent on establishing enabling measurers to achieve the goal. For example for a successful weight loss resolution you would expect the person to have a good knowledge of low fat nutritious food, scales to measure food quantities, scales to measure body weight and a record of body weight. Without this monitoring it would become all too hard to pursue.

To break an addiction to Credit Cards, financial strategies need to be adopted. The holder needs to know what is available to be spent on consumables in a period and carry this amount of cash for purchases leaving the credit card at home. Use a Debit Card, not a Credit Card if a purchase on ebay or has to be made or over the telephone.

If the Resolution is to have more friends or getting on with people better, more will have to be done than trolling the internet and joining a club for example. There is a need to “look at yourself in a mirror”. If you see someone full of hate and anger, somebody who is all too “precious”, their lot will be unlikely to be improved by the Resolution.

The thing to remember is that you cannot keep doing the same old things year after year and expect the outcomes to be different no matter how many New Year Resolutions are made.

Yours fraternally ,.