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Unveiling The Evolution Of New Year’s Resolutions; A Journey Through Time and Tips for Realizing Your Goals

With the frenzy of Christmas this past week and all the cooking, gift wrapping and then some,  I fell a little behind in getting this week’s blog post out sooner. I hope you all enjoyed the warmth of being with your loved ones and celebrating the holiday. And now for this week’s post… 

Ah, the magic of new beginnings! It’s like stepping into a foreign land, brimming with promise, change, and a touch of uncertainty. Can’t you just feel the excitement adding to the allure?

The history of New Year resolutions

Now, let’s take a little journey back in time, about 4000 years ago, to the vibrant traditions of the ancient Babylonians. Picture this: the Babylonians ringing in the New Year with an 11-day festival called Akitu, coinciding with the vernal equinox. It was a time for planting crops, crowning kings, and making promises, much like our modern-day resolutions.

One resolution gem? The return of borrowed farm equipment. Practical, right? During this festival, they shared the epic tale of creation, “Enuma Elish,” depicting the cosmic struggle between Mardukh, the god of Heaven, and Tiamut, the goddess of Chaos. 

In the midst of this celestial clash, a notable moment unfolds. A king, facing the consequences of his actions, has his powers stripped away. Yet, in a twist of fate, he seeks forgiveness for his sins. It’s a narrative element that resonates with the essence of accountability, a quality we often yearn for in our modern leaders.

Fast forward a bit, and the Babylonian New Year’s traditions found a new home with the ancient Romans, resolutions included. With the Julian calendar in 46 B.C., January 1st became the designated start of the new year. Why January? Well, it’s named after Janus, the two-faced Roman god who peers forward to new beginnings and backward for reflection.

Janus, the guardian of gates and doors, oversaw the temple of peace—a symbolic place for forging new beginnings and resolutions. Makes sense, right? January aligns with the end of the harvest season and the calming after the holiday frenzy in Europe and North America.

In the Middle Ages, even medieval knights jumped on the resolution bandwagon, renewing their chivalrous vows at the end of the year with the annual “Peacock Vow.” No borrowed farm equipment, but the sentiment was there.

How Resolutions Have Evolved

Fast forward again, this time to the 21st century. No peacocks or farm equipment involved, but the spirit lives on. In the early 1900s, resolutions took on a more spiritual tone, reflecting a desire for moral character, a solid work ethic, and restraint in the face of earthly pleasures—a moral compass still guiding many today.

The Stats on Resolutions

Now, let’s chat about the real deal—the stats. A Marist poll spilled the beans: 68% of adults who made resolutions actually kept them. Impressive, right? Making resolutions is like cultivating new habits—consistency and practice are the keys. But don’t forget to ask yourself, “Why is this important to me?” It’s your compass, your driving force. Be realistic, treat your resolution like the goal it is, and set yourself up for success.

Best Practices For Making New Years Resolutions

You know, those promises we make to ourselves with a burst of enthusiasm as the clock strikes midnight? 

So, grab your favorite cozy beverage and let’s explore some tried-and-true practices to make those resolutions stick like glitter on New Year’s Eve.

  • Keep it Real: Let’s start with the basics. Your resolutions should be as authentic as your favorite pair of comfy socks. Choose goals that genuinely resonate with you, aligning with your values and aspirations.
  • Small Steps, Big Wins: Break down your resolutions into bite-sized, manageable steps. Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither are lasting habits. Celebrate the small victories along the way—they add up!
  • Accountability Buddies: Share your resolutions with a friend or family member. Having a support system can turn the journey into a shared adventure. Plus, it’s more fun when you have someone cheering you on!
  • Flexibility is Key: Life is unpredictable, and that’s part of its beauty. Be open to tweaking your resolutions if needed. Embrace the journey, detours and all.
  • Reflect and Adjust: Regular check-ins are crucial. Take a moment to reflect on your progress, what’s working, and what might need a little tweak. Adjusting your sails ensures you stay on course.

Remember, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to resolutions. It’s about creating a roadmap that works for you. Wishing you a fantastic journey as you step into the New Year with intention and a heart full of possibilities!




accountability, best practices, consistency, focus, goal setting, goals, history, holidays, New Years resolutions, resolutions, transformation

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