New year’s resolutions get a lot of bad press. Everyone likes to knock them, whingeing on about how unachievable they are and how we’ll never stick to them.
The truth is, we may or we may not. But what exactly is wrong with giving it a go? Even a resolution made on a whim will have some relevance to a situation in our every day lives, while many are made as a result of some real evaluation about what is important to us. So what’s wrong with that? Of course it’s possible we may not stick to it but surely it’s worth a try?
Obviously news is slow in the New Year, so the obligatory stories are prepared months in advance just to keep us all amused. But why do they have to be so negative?
This year, more than ever before, people are being urged to give up alcohol for January, fuelled by charity campaigners such as Cancer Research UK and Alcohol Concern, keen to highlight the dangers of alcohol consumption while fundraising for their respective causes. Along with outspoken TV doctor Christian Jesson, most of the UK media has jumped straight on the bandwagon, telling us that giving up alcohol for January is futile and will lull us all into a false sense of security that we can pickle our livers to our heart’s content the minute the first of February strikes. What a load of poppycock. Ok so giving up alcohol for January isn’t as good as giving up alcohol for good. But it’s better than NOT giving up alcohol for January. And while there may be some who throw themselves back on the wine with gusto, there are many more who will take note of how much better they feel for drinking less and will use it as a springboard for changing their habits for the better.
The same goes for just about every resolution you could make. Make more time for family and friends? Well, why not, even if it only lasts a month or two. Get fit and lose weight? Better to try than not. Save more money? Good plan, especially since I’ve got none left after Christmas. Give up chocolate? Great… er… actually strike that one.
The Independent carried out a survey and last week published their list of the top ten resolutions for 2013:
- Save more money
- Get out of debt
- Get fit/lose weight
- Change job/career
- Quit smoking
- Give up alcohol
- Spend less time working
- Spend more time with family/friends
- Give up chocolate
- Move house
Many, if not all, will touch a nerve with anyone reading this right now. Six apply to me. So my New Year’s resolution is to make more New Year’s resolutions than ever before. They may not transform my life – but equally they may. And at least I’ll have a challenging January to look forward to - shopping in Aldi, spending more time with my outlaws and facing abstinence with stoicism - instead of simply losing myself in the depressing depths of the great British winter.