As we approach the new year we often reflect on what sort of year we have had and if we need to make any changes in the new year.We may decide to discard or change things which did not serve us well or caused us harm. We often decide to make New Year’s Resolutions with intention to make lasting beneficial changes in our lives which will serve us better in the up coming new year. We want to get rid of the old habits and activity that is not working for us and start a new beginning, with renewed hope and enthusiasm . Unfortunately the New Year’s Resolutions do not have a very good track record of actually accomplishing the new changes successfully.
According to the Wikipedia :-
“Recent research shows that while 52% of participants in a resolution study were confident of success with their goals, only 12% actually achieved their goals. A separate study in 2007 by Richard Wisemen from the University of Bristol showed that 78% of those who set New Year resolutions fail, and those who succeed have 5 traits in common. Men achieved their goal 22% more often when they engaged in goal setting, (a system where small measurable goals are being set; such as, a pound a week, instead of saying “lose weight”), while women succeeded 10% more when they made their goals public and got support from their friends”
More from the Wikipedia :-
For the year 2012, the top 5 resolutions, as identified by a SlideShare survey are:-
- Be financially-savvy
- Read at least one book per month
- Eat properly
- Get enough sleep
- Keep a journal of awesome moments
Other popular new year’s resolution include :- lose weight,exercise more, eat better, drink less alcohol, quit smoking and stop biting nails.
Now that you have heard the bad news are you going to give up on the resolutions? No, don’t do that; THERE IS HOPE. A Tibetan monk was asked once how he managed to cross a difficult path over the Himalayas on foot during the Chinese occupation. He said ” One step at a time.” To be successful we have to do the same.
First we have to choose the right time to begin our journey for the new change. When is the right time ? It is not necessarily at new year when the pressure is on to make a resolution because everyone else is making them. The right time is more likely to be when we either have a “peak experience” or ” negative experience”. The ” peak experience” was first described by a psychologist Abraham Maslow as ” moments of pure , positive happiness when all doubts, all fears, all inhibitions, all tensions, all weaknesses, are left behind and self-consciousness is lost.” These experiences are more common than we think, we don’t always recognize them when we have them. The “negative experience ” may range from nagging sense of discomfort and boredom – the feeling that there must be something more – to the feeling that St. John of the Cross described as ” the dark night of the soul.” Although negative experience maybe opposite of the positive peak experiences described by Maslow , it can have the same effect – both experiences propels us through the entry point of our journey to new beginning.
Second, we have to persevere: – the wise teachers warn against the first flush of enthusiasm because the journey is often beset with difficulties. Here is advise from I Ching: “persevere, again and again”; from Trungpa Rinpoche ” If you must begin then go all the way, because if you begin and quit, the unfinished business you have left behind begins to haunt you all the time.”
Happy New Year . May your New Year Resolutions be successful. May you be Happy.
Chop Wood Carry Water
By Rick Fields, with Peggy Taylor, Rex Weyler, and Rick Ingrasci
- New Year’s Resolution Tips (primensible.wordpress.com)
- The 7 Most Common New Year Resolutions (socyberty.com)
- What should your New Year’s resolution be? (halliecrawford.com)
- How to Make a Real New Year Resolution (deeliciousoz.wordpress.com)