What have you done this year?
THIS STORY WAS ERRONEOUSLY CREDITED TO ANOTHER REPORTER IN OUR PRINT ISSUE. IT WAS WRITTEN BY LAUREN GARDNER.
As the ball drops in New York City on December 31 people cheer and hope that the new year will bring new and exciting things. When the clocks strike 12, New Year’s resolutions spread through the air, and revelers make a pledge to accomplish them. Most of the time the goals last for about a month or two if one is motivated. Sometimes the resolution is forgotten in a week. By the time spring hits, people tend to forget and push their resolutions to the side as stress and life interfere. Even with everyone giving up, however, there are still a couple handful of people who stay on track and continue to work toward their goals.
A study conducted at the University of Scranton consisted of gathering 200 people who made New Year’s Resolutions. The subjects were followed to determine how successful they were with the challenge. The study lasted for two years.
About 77 percent of the participants made it to the first week. After one month, the number declined to 64 percent. Only 19 percent of the people persevered and remained committed to their goals. As months went on numbers fell.
All students know that it is hard to stay motivated. Students have to find endless supplies of energy, while their sleep is limited and their workload sometimes immense. Some students succeed more than others, but that is part of high school.
Common new year resolutions usually consist of losing weight, working harder, handling financial issues, and getting more sleep. There also more complex goals that require big adjustments, like cutting something toxic out of your life or trying to be more positive.
One LHS student shared her goal for the year, and if it succeeded,”My New Year’s resolution was to be my own best friend,” she said. “I was successful in the beginning but then as the middle of the year went on my mindset changed and I wasn’t happy with myself for a while. Some of that was me and some of that was other factors. I probably could have been more optimistic though. I’d say I’m my own best friend now, but the middle of the year was a roadblock.”
Obstacles slow people down but the test to measuring promise and hope for success is persistence: picking yourself back up until you accomplish the goal.
There are also people who don’t really have anything they want to change because they are content with how things are going. Jane Goudreau, an LHS sophomore, hasn’t had much experience with goals.”I don’t really make goals,” she said. “I think one year I said I was going to be nicer, but people already think I’m nice. I don’t really have them for myself.”
Resolutions are not for everyone, it is a common tradition to create a fresh start with every new year. If someone is happy with themselves then they can to resolve to continue on toward the path they have already chosen.
January is said to be the longest month by many people. That is, at least for New Englanders who endure countless snow storms January through March. The weather can sometimes put a damper in people’s moods which make people less motivated to start the year off strong.
As the year comes close to an end many people reflect upon what they accomplished for the year. And remember, at worst, there is always next year.