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New Year's resolutions - time to reflect

January 02, 2007

By SARA MARTENS

New Year's Day is a great celebration of the ending of the old year and the beginning of a new one.

One of the traditions associated with this holiday is New Year's resolutions. Sadly, this custom is often ignored today for various reasons. Some people say it's too difficult. Some believe that they can't accomplish their resolutions, so why even bother? Many feel it's simply too much hassle.

However, I believe that this tradition is one that should be continued.

One great thing about making New Year's resolutions is that it allows you to reflect back on the previous year and decide on some goals for the upcoming year. It gives you the opportunity to really think about what you did wrong, what you did right and what you could improve. Then, you can determine ways to improve your life.

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Maybe you wish you had handled a certain event differently. Perhaps you realize that you let a disagreement drag on longer than you should have. Or maybe you understand that if you behave more responsibly at home, your mom might finally allow you to stay out later or get a job.

Some people make and reassess their goals throughout the year, but many people do not. But whenever a goal is made as a New Year's resolution, it seems to be more commanding.

Also, many people don't make resolutions because they tell themselves that keeping resolutions is too difficult. But in reality, it doesn't always matter how long you can keep a resolution. It teaches you more about yourself. It can give you a new insight into your strengths and weaknesses and your limits.

Besides, if you can keep a resolution for at least awhile, you can better yourself from the experience.

For example, say you decide you want to improve your grades. You might learn you have to manage your life differently to succeed at school without forfeiting your social life.

Another benefit of resolutions is that you have the satisfaction of knowing that you could do it. Whether you managed to last five weeks or five months, you know that you lasted that long and you can be proud of that.

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