Not Making Promises, Not Keeping them, and Not Rushing it

It’s been seven weeks since the new year began. Seven weeks of “new year, new me”, and seven weeks of saying bye to old habits. 

We asked students at JU how they celebrated the new year, and what the upcoming year will hold for them.

As we are starting off our new semester here on campus, we are also saying goodbye to the year that was 2022 and looking back at all its ups and downs. “What did I accomplish this year?” or “what did I learn?” are both common questions to ask ourselves and to reflect upon. A tradition amongst a lot of people is to set a goal at the end of the year, for the year to come – a New Year’s resolution. The resolution could be about something you want to accomplish or want to do until the end of the year.  

Most people choose to celebrate the new year in original and different ways, and Telma Ehrnst is no different. She celebrated New Year’s Eve at home together with her mom. 

– At midnight we made a toast for the upcoming year!

For another student, Julia Sidhammar, it has become a five-year-old tradition to celebrate the New Year with her friends. 

– We celebrate together by playing old Wii games, as well as watching fireworks. It has become a cheerful tradition, especially since we do not see each other as much as we used to.

Around campus, students also shared their New Year’s resolutions such as “to become healthier,” “to learn a new language,” and “save more money”. One student, Aïcha Muse says that her resolution is to get into good routines for her sleeping and eating habits, which are all very common resolutions worldwide. It is, as mentioned earlier, very common for people to make a New Year’s resolution, however, most resolutions tend to fail after a few months, and only a small percentage of people manage to fulfill their goals until the end of the year. This is something many students on campus admitted to doing, which leads to the interesting question – “how come this is such a common problem?” 

Aïcha Muse reflects upon the question and answers. 

— I think many people may give up on their New Year’s resolution because they may have set an unrealistic goal. Then you might easily become unmotivated and give up on it.

– It’s like that promise to yourself makes you feel pressured, which is the reason why I decided to scrap it, adds Telma. 

This problem has led to people dropping their New Year’s resolutions all around the world, as well as around campus. Julia Sidhammar says that she also chose to scrap the tradition with New Year’s resolutions for the same reason and to instead make a “bucket list” for the year to come. 

– These last few years I have been making bucket lists instead of resolutions. They are filled with fun things to do, but with no musts, such as traveling to another country, or going to a concert or a theater before the year is done, says Julia. 

It’s clear that the traditional New Year’s resolution is becoming outdated, and that more and more people are deciding to try a different path for their yearly goals. But how do we make our resolutions into something that we can fulfill, instead of giving up on it?

Students’ tips for a successful resolution 

  • Make realistic goals that you know you can achieve! Otherwise, you are setting yourself up for failure! It is important to document your journey for additional motivation along the way, so you can keep going! – Aïcha
  • Make a bucket list! Don’t add things you know will be difficult to achieve in the first place. It is better to achieve more at the end of the year than what you thought you would, rather than achieve nothing at all. – Julia
  • Don’t stress about it. Nothing happens when we don’t keep our promises to ourselves, so we see it more as an aspiration than a compulsion. – Telma  

Happy New Year! And remember not to be too harsh on yourself.

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