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New Year, New Resolution

What is a resolution, and where and why did it begin?

Hi everyone,

The New Year has begun, did you make any resolutions? In many western cultures making New Year’s resolutions is a long running tradition.

What is a resolution? It is simply a decision to make a change. This could be by doing something (eg. To start playing football) OR by not doing something (eg. To stop drinking coca-cola).

But where did it all begin?

Actually, resolutions are as old as the New Year tradition itself! So, just like the ancient Babylonians started the celebration of the New Year 4,000 years ago, they also started resolutions.

Ancient resolutions were a little different from our modern ones though. The Babylonians would make promises to their gods at the start of each year that they would return borrowed objects and pay their debts. The Romans carried on this tradition by making promises to the god Janus.

In modern times resolutions became less about making promises to God, and more about making promises to ourselves.

So, what are the most common resolutions that people make?

HEALTH

  • Losing weight
  • Giving up smoking
  • Exercising more
  • Drinking less alcohol

WORK

  • Finding a better job
  • Working harder
  • Arriving at work on time
  • Set more goals for the year

FAMILY

  • Spending more time with family
  • Finding a partner/husband/wife
  • Having children
  • Give more time for you

Interestingly, most people who make these types of resolutions actually fail to achieve them. In fact, only about 8% of people succeed in keeping their resolutions!

The most common reasons for failure are:

  1. Setting unrealistic or unspecific goals
  2. Not writing down progress
  3. Forgetting about the resolutions

So, if you made a resolution this year be sure you don’t forget about it! And if you get that far, make sure you aim for something realistic and keep track of your progress through the year. Good luck everyone!

Hi everyone,

I'm Rebecca, and Australian living in Rome. I love art, history, food, and creative writing! I am blogging for Creative English in the hope to combine all these passions and share them with you all. Happy reading!

REBECCA ALLISON

Creative English Teacher