100°F
weather icon Clear

Resolve to avoid resolutions

A new year. A new you. Making New Year’s resolutions to improve yourself or your life is a tradition that dates back thousands of years.

According to history.com, the idea of making New Year’s resolutions is believed to date back to ancient Babylonians roughly 4,000 years ago. Celebrations were held in spring, when crops were planted and their new year began. The Babylonians would promise the gods to pay their debts and return any objects they had borrowed. If they kept their word, the gods would favor them in the coming year. If not, well, the gods would not bestow good fortune on them.

It seems very little has changed in the past 4,000 years.

Early Romans and Christians had similar practices, making sacrifices to the gods or resolving to do better after reflecting on the past year’s misdeeds and mistakes.

While not celebrated in January, the Jewish new year has a similar theme — reflecting on the past year, asking for atonement and vowing to work for a better tomorrow.

Over the years, however, the tradition’s religious roots have been abandoned. Instead of making a promise to the gods — or god — people make resolutions for themselves. Often no one but themselves know what those resolutions are, making being held accountable for keeping them nearly impossible.

Perhaps that’s why research shows that while about 45 percent of Americans make New Year’s resolutions, only 8 percent achieve their goals.

If gambling were allowed in Boulder City, it would be a safe bet that many of the resolutions made a mere six days ago are already broken or abandoned.

The poor rate of success is the main reason I don’t make resolutions. Why set myself up to fail?

That doesn’t mean I don’t set goals for myself. I do. They don’t just happen to begin at the start of each new year.

Leadership classes and workshops I have taken teach that planning and setting goals is key to achieving success for any type of resolution, made at the start of a new year or other time of the year.

The National Day Calendar, which designates the first week of January as New Year’s Resolution Week, echoes that sentiment. It states that Gary Blair, creator of the 100 Day Challenge, founded the week in 2005 to remind people of the importance of setting goals to stay on pace.

Like tackling a big project, it suggests breaking up your goal into smaller, easier attainable tasks. And it recommends not to make too many resolutions. Having too many irons in the proverbial fire can be overwhelming. To me it’s almost the same as being ravenous and stepping in front of a buffet. There are too many choices and you don’t know where to begin.

Satisfying that hunger, that desire to improve yourself or your life starts with a single bite, a small step. Each one brings you closer to being full and content. Each little accomplishment also helps motivate you to continue.

Working to make your life better or yourself happier is always a great way to start a new year on Jan. 1 or any other day of the year.

Hali Bernstein Saylor is editor of the Boulder City Review. She can be reached at hsaylor@bouldercityreview.com or at 702-586-9523. Follow @HalisComment on Twitter.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
THE LATEST
Inflation fueled by rising oil costs

What do the rising price of meat products, dairy products, vegetables, cereal and nearly everything in the hardware store, including lumber, have in common? Oil. A barrel of oil is refined into diesel, gasoline, jet fuel and aviation gas. It is utilized in manufacturing plastics, synthetic materials, asphalt, lubricants, roofing, trash bags and the list goes on. Therefore, when the cost of a barrel of oil increases, the cost of goods increases through the manufacturing or the delivery of these products.

Pipeline might save drought-ridden West

I was first introduced to Lake Mead in the summer of 1968 when my father took a job in Henderson, moving us from Long Beach, California. His boss took us to the boat ramp of the Las Vegas Wash, about 10 miles from Henderson. I spent my freshman and sophomore years at Basic High School, which is now Burkholder Middle School.

Call issued for common-sense gun laws

I had a very different column planned for this month, something light, about summer activities. Then on the day of this writing, May 24, 2022, a young man in Uvalde, Texas, took the lives of 19 children and two teachers at Robb Elementary School. My other piece went completely out the window because I knew I needed to write about this. I am the mother of two young children, and I am terrified.

River compact needs re-evaluation

We live in Boulder City, the city that built Hoover Dam. The Boulder Canyon Project Act was the legislation creating Boulder City as well as Boulder Dam. It is located in Black Canyon adjacent to Boulder City, Nevada. The dam is now called Hoover Dam. Life is like that, isn’t it? We have our desires along with reality, don’t we?

Waste not, want not

In July 2017, Boulder City received some really great news that I wanted to share. The Southern Nevada Health District had just approved our latest landfill expansion, the second one that I helped to obtain while serving on SNHD’s board.

It’s voting time

Nevada’s 2022 primary election day is just more than two weeks away, but voting has begun. Early voting started Saturday, and mail ballots were sent May 25 to every Nevada active registered voter.

Cheers to Johnny

My bio references “another lifetime” and being a working comedian. Today I feel moved to share with you the inspiration behind working stand-up and an important anniversary just passed.

Goodbye never easy to say

Goodbyes are hard.

Come fly with me

Boulder City is rich with amenities; one of many is our public airport. Boulder City Municipal Airport dates back to the 1930s, when it was known as Bullock Airport or Bullock Field, with three runways located inside our township. (The old hangar is still standing at the airport’s former location).