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New year's resolutions or ineffective goals?

By Ashley Reynolds
On February 7, 2012

Well, we are now over a month into the New Year, and now that the festivities and excitement of the commencement of 2012 are winding down, it's time to think about the serious stuff. Yes, I'm talking about New Year's resolutions. You all have heard of them, you've all made and broke them, whether it's to fight the freshman 15 by going to the REC every day or improve your study skills by skipping a party to hit the books. Time after time and year after year, people all across the country and in our own UW-La Crosse community are making resolutions to be a better person in some way, shape or form, but is it even realistic to expect ourselves to keep them? Or are we just kidding ourselves in the excitement of starting anew?  

Personally, I'd like to think that I will keep my resolution. In fact, I want to excel in whatever I pledge to accomplish, yet that doesn't always pan out as I had planned.  Instead, February comes around and I decide ‘I'll just start this month' and so on, month after month until about November. Then, I realize that it's just not going to happen this year and I decide to just start fresh next year! Why not? So many people get stuck in this vicious cycle of procrastination and laziness every year. "I had this resolution to not crack my knuckles and I kind of broke it already," says Allie Ziche, a student at UW-L, "To be honest, I don't normally make them [New Year's resolutions] because I know I won't keep them; nobody really keeps them." Allie seems to be in agreement with the general public.  Why do we all make these resolutions if, more often than not, we don't keep them? Better yet, why do we make them if we know we are only going to break them?

If you are serious about a resolution and you are seeing it out, I respect you.  But, if you are like most of us, busy with the new semester and the demanding responsibilities, it's understandable that the ‘I'll get to that next month' attitude seeps in. Just know that you don't need a specific time to start a resolution and January isn't the only month to start improvement.  "If I decide to do something, I just start doing it. I don't wait until the beginning of the year to do it," claims Hannah Christie, a student at UW-L.  This attitude is definitely more productive than the one most of us are in when we make our initial New Year's resolutions, and this is something we all should strive for; there is never a wrong time to better ourselves.  That being said, as college students (and human beings in general), we have no struggle in finding a way to put things off and rest assured that we will decide something is more important than that promise made to ourselves. So I say stay busy, resist the temptation to actually follow your resolution, and keep putting off those goals like you know the rest of us are probably also doing; it's more normal than actually going through with them! Remember, there is always time for that next year!


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