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The Resolve To Resolve

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Why New Year’s resolutions must stay.

By Penny K

Cheers to a New Year and another chance for us to get it right.
– Oprah Winfrey

The New Year is here, the world is split into two factions – those who will be resolving (to be nicer, slimmer, taller, better, fitter, richer, and so on) and those who will not.

Though widely practiced across space, place and race, New Year’s resolutions have religious parallels. It is a concept that encourages self-reflection and improvement.

So why are there those who disapprove? Are they hopeless party-poopers, or what?

Resolution naysayers, the less optimistic faction, can be further subdivided into two groups: one does not see the point in resolving to improve (“I love myself the way I am” types) and the other is sick of making resolutions then breaking them. Both hate when others make resolutions, break them and then whine about them.

Jonathan Tan, 25, said, “I won’t be making a resolution this year. I never stick to them. Nobody does.”

So maybe resolutions are superfluous but they are superfluous like icing on a cake.

Think of a cake without icing on the top.


Now think of that same cake with icing.


Resolutions can be pointless, especially if you don’t intend to stick to them but then again, what’s New Year without resolutions?

Melissa Tay, 20, “I can’t imagine New Year’s without resolutions. I always have one or two every year!”

Resolutions make us think about the ways we can be or do better; resolutions give us something to look forward to and work towards in the New Year.

Resolutions give us hope.

I have resolved to sleep early for the past three New Years. It’s 2am now. I haven’t kept to my resolution but have I tried? Sure I have. I’ve succeeded a couple of times.

Resolutions keep you in check. If you fail, you will try again because you know some eight months ago as you clinked champagne glasses with friends and family with a paper hat on your head, you proclaimed, “I’M GOING TO BED AT 10PM EVERY NIGHT THIS YEAR!”

Of course, no one took you seriously, but still. Imagine having to spend the next New Year’s Eve party attending to lovingly snide comments such as, “I read an article you posted at 3am. Not so much luck with the going to bed early eh?”

I don’t believe we’re ready to do away with resolutions just yet. They make you endeavour to do good things and when you do succeed, good things will come your way. Even if you fail, your year shouldn’t fall too far below expectation.

As the last hours, minutes, and seconds of 2010 slipped by, I thought about my resolution. Then 3, 2, 1, took a plunge into 2011 and hoped for the best.

Happy New Year!

The Penny’s Daybook Team’s Resolutions for 2011

Penny C
“My resolutions for 2011: I hope to be healthier, I hope to laugh more and weird out less, and to get craftier – be cunningly good at art!”

Penny K
“In 2011, I hope to be steadfast and stable. I hope to set aside more time for the ones and things I love. I hope to be able to manage at least a smatter of Cantonese and Korean. I want to spend more time in the kitchen. I want to exercise consistently. And of course, I still want to go to bed early!”

Penny V
“This year I hope to be able to rest more – 2010 was a crazy hectic year! I also hope to write more songs so I need to be best friends with inspiration now. Finally, I hope to give and love more!”

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