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The Tradition of New Year’s Resolutions Dates Back Long Ago

For many years, people have made New Year’s resolutions with hopes to complete them and this upcoming year will be no different. Although very few complete all of their resolutions, people still will have hope to accomplish them. The history behind New Year’s resolutions dates back many years and has evolved vastly since then.

“I like that New Year’s resolutions are a good chance to start off the year right and that they are a nice excuse to better yourself for a couple of weeks,” French teacher Jenny Liberson said.

New Year’s resolutions and celebrations date back to around 4,000 years ago during Babylonian times. They have been continuously used throughout history by many different people including knights in medieval times as well as Christians in the sixteenth century. In ancient times, people made promises and sacrifices to the gods in hopes of better fortune for things like crops and health. Janus is one of the gods they made sacrifices to as he is the god of transitions and time; the month of January gets its root from the Roman god. This was the start of how people made New Year’s Resolutions and how they accomplished them in ancient times.

“I try to make my New Year’s resolutions attainable,” Liberson said. “Last year, I made like a three page list of New Year’s resolutions but I tried to keep just one of them. So I give myself options to fail and then at least one of them will hopefully succeed.”

People practice New Year’s resolutions for many different reasons: to better themselves and their lives for the new year, make new goals and break old habits. Some reasons people tend to not complete their resolutions are they often are not easily manageable or realistic and people tend to lose motivation as the year goes on. People used to use these resolutions for religious reasons by thinking and reflecting upon their past mistakes and making goals to do better in the future.

“My soccer team had a sleepover in our indoor facility for New Year’s and we all made soccer related New Year’s resolutions,” sophomore Lexi Merrit said. So it was really fun seeing all my friends try [New Year’s resolutions] and seeing who sticks with them.”