DEBATE: New Year resolutions: Are they necessary?

As the clock strikes midnight making it January 1, the clean slate offered by a new year is an attractive prospect. For many, the start of a new year offers a fresh start and an opportunity to review goals, re-evaluate priorities and ditch bad habits.

Without direction, every road is the right way

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As the clock strikes midnight making it January 1, the clean slate offered by a new year is an attractive prospect. For many, the start of a new year offers a fresh start and an opportunity to review goals, re-evaluate priorities and ditch bad habits.

A good sailor does not leave the shore without a destination in his mind. If he doesn’t have a place in mind then every direction seems to be the right way. With a direction in mind, he will drive the ship in that direction. In life, we should have a goal or aim.

To find out that destination, we need to ask some empowering questions like: What do I need to achieve in the coming months or year? Which area of my life needs improvement? Where should I reach in a time span of three months, six months or a year? How can I reach that destination? Your questions will give you the answer to reach that destination.

Some people haven’t really understood what it means to have a resolution. Resolutions aren’t goals that are so high up in the sky. They are achievable goals that will make the coming year a better year than the previous one. They are bigger steps on the ladder from which one was already climbing.

Resolutions can also be what one shouldn’t do in the next year. It helps you evaluate what you did wrong this year and you want to leave it behind and move on.

If we do not have a plan or desire, we are like a man driving in a circle. Every evening he reaches the starting point. We are living a life like that. Spending our valuable time in the cycle of events. Wake up, in the morning, do the same things during the day and go to bed without achieving a thing. If you live a life like that, even after 10 years, your life would be almost the same as today.

Resolutions can also be what one shouldn’t do in the next year. It helps you evaluate what you did wrong this year and you want to leave it behind and move on. Change brings change.To change some habits you need to identify them, re-think on how to act different, plan it out and execute the new plan. All that needs to have targets set out and that is a resolution. Change is very painful, but it will pay off. It would change your financial situation. It will change our health. It may give you enough spare time to spend on things you love.

No goal, no resolution, no change means you are in the same place you were a year ago. To move forward, you need a destination. That destination is your goal, or resolution. Then walk towards that destination, one step at a time. After a few days, you will find that you are a few steps closer to your destination. It will strengthen your enthusiasm and help you take another step towards your goal. Slowly, day by day, you are coming closer to your destination. Finally, you will reach that destination.

Even if it took more time, you reached another level of achievement in your life. Then you would be able to look back at your past with a smile.

It is also very important to critically think about the past year before setting resolutions for the coming year. You look better in the future when you know your past.

patrick.buchana@newtimes.co.rw

New Year resolutions are old school

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Making New Year’s resolutions is a tradition in which a person makes a promise or sets goals to achieve something, for instance like changing a specific kind of life style on January 1st, each year.

The main reason why I feel that New Year resolutions are outdated is because I have learnt one thing, as we make plans, God is planning too. We have very little control on what can happen to us all year round. Honestly speaking, New Year resolutions have become old school!

Of all the times I have written down my New Year resolutions, out of the five things I plan to do, not even one is achieved. So I learnt to let nature take its course.

For instance, at the start of 2014, I had planned that by August I would have attained my driving permit, but by August, I had not even gotten the temporary permit.

New Year resolutions have become so outdated mainly because people only embrace their New Year resolution for the first two weeks of January but by February, they are forgotten.

People have come up with a variety of goals in life without necessarily classifying them as New Year resolutions. With the innovative world we live in each passing day, new traditions are embraced.

“Rememberlution” is a new tradition that is replacing the outdated New Year resolutions tradition.

A publication on buzzfeed.com titled “Here’s What You Should Do Instead Of Making New Year’s Resolutions,” gave options to people who are tired of making New Year’s resolutions that they never keep by doing something different called “rememberlutions!”

The publication indicated that New Year’s resolutions can be energising and motivating, but they can also lead you to beat yourself up; focusing on the previous year’s failures to figure out where to do better next year is no way to live.

And when you don’t keep your resolutions (yet again), you can feel completely defeated. So instead of focusing on shortcomings, prepare to celebrate each awesome thing that happens next year by making a jar that you can fill with memories and accomplishments over the course of the next 12 months. You can review and remember when the ball drops at the end of 2015.

Therefore, if you don’t want to get disappointed, don’t rely on New Year resolutions because they make you feel like a failure yet you have achieved a lot in the old year. Enjoy the prosperous 2015!

doreen.umutesi@newtimes.co.rw

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