New Year’s Resolutions

New Year's ResolutionsHappy New Year! Have you made any new year’s resolutions? Sometimes, I am rather ambivalent to the whole concept of celebrating the new year. So it’s a new year. But also, so what? And why do we make resolutions at the beginning of a new year? And that’s really what I want to talk about:

Where do New Year’s Resolutions Come From?

According to History.com, the tradition started 4,000 years ago with the Babylonians. Their ‘new year’ was in mid-March, when they planted their crops. They had a 12 day religious festival in which they crowned a new king. They also made promises to their pagan gods during that festival. Favor with their gods depended on whether or not they kept those promises. Now that would make you plan your resolutions carefully!

Similar promises were made by the Romans – the offered sacrifices to their deity and made promises of good behavior in the new year. Early Christians had similar traditions of reflecting on their past mistakes and promising to do better in the new year.

Today, New Year’s Resolutions are more secular. We make promises to ourselves around self-improvement. Though in reality, these resolutions are rarely met.

I know I was never good at keeping them. Until the one resolution I made years ago. The one that said I was done making New Year’s Resolutions. To this day, I have kept that one resolution.

Resolutions without motivation are pointless! #happyhealthypositive Click To Tweet

Who needs a New Year to Improve?

In reality, I don’t wait for a new year to make a resolution. For many years, I made a resolution to quit smoking. I’m not sure it lasted the one day, ever. Eventually I did quit smoking, though. It was in January of 2001, though not on the first. I made the decision on January 25th, the day I learned that my sister had lung cancer. And I quit three days later.

Resolutions Need Motivation

That’s the secret to making a resolution that sticks, right? You need the right motivation. The changing of the calendar is not that motivation. I have recently made a resolution regarding my health and physical fitness. It started in December though. My motivation? I have many plans for 2018 that require me to be in really good shape. Since it is an important goal, it started right away. Not on January first.

What resolutions, if any, will you be making?

Barbara
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Barbara

Hi, I’m Barbara McNeely, author and publisher in San Antonio, Texas. I coach authors who have a personal story they want to share in a book. And I consult and guide authors through the process of self-publishing their books.
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