The Life and Death of a New Year’s Resolution

“There is nothing magical about the flip of the calendar, but it represents a clean break, a new hope, and a blank canvas.”

Within the 24 hours of the prior year leading into the next, millions of people will make a time-honored pledge, known as a “New Year’s resolution.” This promise for change declares that with the beginning of the year, you will reverse the detrimental lifestyle or choices that plagued you the previous year.

As one-year ends and another looms on the horizon, we begin building our hopes on unrealistic goals concerning changes in our attitudes, focus or demeanor, while making promises to ourselves (and to others) that we have every intention of keeping. Nevertheless, I am reminded of that adage, “If you fail to plan, then you plan to fail.”

It is during those first few months that no greater desire for change is sought, than in the areas of health choices, lifestyle and of course, religion.

According to a recent article in, the numbers tell the real story: 43% of all people expect to fail before February, and almost one out of four quit within the first week of setting their New Year’s resolution.

Most people quit before the end of January, and only 9% see their resolutions through until succession. That’s right, only 9% successfully keep their New Year’s resolutions. 23% of people quit by the end of the first week, 64% after the first month (according to a study with Australian and UK citizens), and 81% before the end of the second year.

Most people quit on the second Friday of the month, according to Strava, a Running and Cycling tracking app. They named this day “Quitters Day”. 43% of people expect to give up on their goals by February, which explains the relatively high quitting rate in January.

Why is that?

Why are these numbers so consistent every single year? More so, why do so many fail to accomplish the goals they set?

Truth be told, it isn’t the lack of desire for success, but rather the unwillingness to release that which keeps us unsuccessful. In the aforementioned quote from author and educator Jason Soroski, he clearly recognized the task of making resolutions, and understood as well that many times, we tend to drag our past into our present,
thereby drastically reducing the chances for future success.

Have you allowed your past mistakes to cloud your future achievements? Are you prepared to embrace all that God has for you tomorrow?

This year instead, make a ‘New Day Resolution.’ Oftentimes our goals are impractical, because we have not taken into account our own tendencies to repeat our mistakes. So, when we fail, we lose hope for the year.

Why is a ‘New Day resolution’ different? With such a laser focus regardless of the goal, reiterate your success
plan every day; don’t wait until the new year.

We must keep in mind that tomorrow is not promised, which means we must make the most of each day. However, truly moving forward requires that we learn from our mistakes rather than live in them. By doing so, we ensure our goals’ chances for success. Remember, there can honestly be no New Year’s resolution, without an “Old Year’s Dissolution!”

Happy New Year!

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