The Curse of the New Year

Reasons why New Year resolutions fail

Dailey Jackson, Managing Editor

       Every year, hundreds of thousands of people make New Year resolutions minutes before the timer hits zero. These resolutions include anything from getting a job, working out more, or simply just having a better attitude towards others. Though people have good intent with these resolutions, especially when considering the potential benefits, the promises always seem to slip their minds right when it is officially the New Year.     “For many people, this is generally a time of year when there is reflection about how their year has gone, and what they’re looking forward to in the coming year,” Jane Ehrman, a behavioral health specialist at the Wellness Institute of Cleveland Clinic, said to CBS News.

     Even though people are aware that a new year rolls around every twelve months, the prospect of coming up with a new resolution seems to terrify them. There’s a huge amount of pressure associated with keeping these resolutions, and the pressure itself may be a contributing factor to why so many fail.

     “So from the beginning we set ourselves up for failure because we know that anywhere from 50 to 80 percent of people are going to ultimately get off their path of resolution,” said Dr. Stephen Graef, a sports psychologist at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center.

     Another reason for failure may be the fact that the goals are set way too high or too broad. They aren’t specific enough to initiate any sort of change so the spark just dies out. Making specific goals can help to motivate yourself to quickly get them done, or continuously working on them throughout the year.

     To solve this resolution crisis, try making your goals follow the acronym SMART. This acronym stands for Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Time-based. Make sure to celebrate your small victories and be honest with yourself if you’re struggling achieving one of your goals. Always remember that you don’t need twelve months to pass to set up a new goal for yourself. Setting small goals throughout the year can ease the pressure of the New Year Curse.