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Ryann Daugherty

TRL’s Ashlan Morgan and Sarah Hibberd share their thoughts on New Year’s Resolutions. Sarah is pro-resolution and Ashlan is against New Year’s Resolutions.

New Year’s Resolutions

January 11, 2022

With the new year, many create resolutions starting Jan. 1 to better themselves. TRL’s Sarah Hibberd and Ashlan Morgan share their opposing views on the tradition.

Begin again

Ah, resolutions. They will forever give us room for change, positivity and new beginnings to keep us on our toes. Thanks to New Year’s Day, we welcome motivation to uplift our quality of life through hope and, ultimately, our newly-made resolutions. Regardless, many consider them to be unavailing and even insincere; however, the delight in resolution-making is much more valuable than any result. 

We identify time through many methods. We measure it by season, by century, but most importantly by year. We record all the ages of the earth in years as a base unit, which is why the “new year” concept makes sense. More than any time in the world, the new year brings a new dawn. It gives people the opportunity to gather the motivation required to devote to their goals. Especially due to the time provided from Christmas break, New Year’s is the best period to build up your strength, create your game plan and put in the work for your resolution. Sure, we could find any time of the year to dedicate to our goals, but selecting New Year’s Day as our starting line better prepares us for the endeavors ahead. 

New Year’s resolutions invite a time for self-awareness. Where we may have lost track of our flaws in the past, we can assess ourselves as a whole and discover where we can improve before the new year. It’s approaching New Year’s day when many of us realize we must alter our mindsets, cut out a harmful habit or introduce a healthy one. It provides us motivation to learn new things and pick up held-off projects. Preparing our mentality for change comes naturally as we approach New Year’s Day, and the celebration of putting the past aside is what makes New Year’s Eve such a hopeful, joyous experience. 

Above all else, resolutions reinstate the vision of our desired future. During our time scrolling through social media, and most of us do, we come across many people and lifestyles that encourage us to change. While it’s crucial to acknowledge the glamorization behind most social media posts, it’s still valuable to witness the healthier lifestyles we hope to adopt. Among the days leading up to New Year’s Day, millions of individuals pull inspiration from numerous sources so that they may apply them to their New Year’s resolutions. Approaching the new year, we determine where we wish to direct our lives and reclaim our long-forgotten ambitions. 

There has to be a downside to resolution-making, right? Unfortunately, our resolution-breaking is largely unavoidable, so goes the stereotype. This doesn’t mean resolutions don’t work out for some people; many successfully convert their lives because they diligently stick to their resolutions, go them. However the controversy on whether New Year’s resolutions are a no or go is not decided by their success rates, but on whether they either inspire change or bring happiness to the world. Some will argue resolutions breed procrastination, discouragement and disappointment, however, I believe they foster hope in great abundance. The incredible thing about hope is its outreach. Across the globe, people gather their glasses for bubbly beverages and watch the ball drop in celebration of new beginnings and hope for the new year. Why we’d deter from such optimism and festivity I could never comprehend. 

It’s beautiful that humanity chooses to see opportunity rather than adversity. It’s awe-inspiring that we choose to march into our battles and rewrite our wild lives. So long as the ring of opportunity remains associated with the promise of resolutions, I will always have a joyous new year.

With hope, I say we seize the season and begin again.

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All year long

Another revolution around the sun. Another year has gone by. The seconds before midnight are filled with wide smiles and the chorus of counting down to zero. The change in the minute between 11:59 and 12:00 is marked by loud cheers, kisses and toasting glasses. The concept of time and the impact it has on mankind is truly extraordinary. We see our planet beginning yet another journey around the sun as a symbol for newness, growth and hope. On this very day we treasure time so dearly and place an abundance of significance on what it brings. We hope to achieve our anticipated feelings for the new year by repeating the cycle of the novelty we call resolutions.

The concept of time is seen through the progression of past to present to future. Sometimes we become senseless to its progression, and other times we are overly aware of its pace. New Year’s often throws us the realization that time is changing—and maybe we want to change too. However, I believe we fail to realize that time is given to us, well, all the time.

The idea of reflecting to create ideas or goals on how to better oneself is admirable. Whether it be focusing on the betterment of mental or physical health, picking up a new hobby or simply vowing to make smarter decisions, resolutions hold obvious value. However, I do not think this thought process should be explored only on New Years.

Everyone is occasionally prone to procrastination, forgetting and losing motivation. To me, the unfulfillment of New Year’s resolutions isn’t the reason I’m against them. The drive to merely hope to achieve our resolutions is admirable. However, the year collectively brings more to us than the week between Christmas and New Years where we remember to ask ourselves our resolutions. Whether it be March, April or October, we always desire ways to better ourselves. The idea of New Year’s resolutions has seemingly become trademarked, and we fail to realize resolutions are being made every single day of the year.

Everyday, we make small decisions that create large impacts on our lives. Every once and a while, we set a goal for ourselves that requires a little more drastic decision making than usual. The majority of the time, we simply carry out these journeys internally. We don’t necessarily voice our goals to get all A’s in the upcoming school year or get a nice tan during the summer. However, we do seem to carry them out a bit more successfully than our New Year’s resolutions.

My anti-New Year’s resolution stance is more or less a pro-be proud of what you accomplish all year long. New Year’s resolutions can often be a false hope or a routine process we fail to complete. The failure of resolutions has seemed to grow more popular than the completion of them. The irony of resolutions is quite remarkable; however, I do think it takes away from the idea that we are always capable of creating and following through with them.

Next time you wish to achieve something, do it. Try your best, recognize there will be hard days, but yet remain steadfast in your strength. Don’t let New Year’s be the only reminder of growth and newness. You are always capable of a ‘new you’ if that’s what you deem fit. Don’t let the irony of New Year’s take away from the accomplishments you have attained and will achieve all year long.

Recognize the value of time and what it provides for you. Be in awe of celebrating another revolution around the sun in this vast universe. Soak up the time treasuring the challenges you have survived and the future you will capture.

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