Mirror Magazine

30th December 2001

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Beginning of a twelve month disaster

By Ms. Light
The end of another year...boy, that sure went fast. Is it just me, or do years go by much faster than they did earlier on. Seriously, I remember waiting (as a kid) for something like what seemed very close to a hundred years just for a year to go by and while at the time I could never stretch my imagination to anything more than age 12, I'm now hitting all sorts of ages before I can even stretch my imagination to them. 

Surely, one always reasons, life couldn't have got this fast-paced! Maybe earth is spinning just a little bit faster than it used to - humpf, no need to roll your eyes like that - all I'm saying is, just maybe. Otherwise it's us who've done all of this, rushing through life like some kind of robotic mechanism.

So you're all starry-eyed and excited about your New Year plans? Can't wait to 'begin' again, huh? Don't you people ever learn? The first of January is only going to start off the whole 'Twelve-Month Disaster Dance'. And it's presumed that one would know better, having gone through the whole routine. But nooooo, we've all forgotten haven't we? Well, let me give you a gentle reminder. 

For starters, this whole 'New Year' business comes at a really bad time. By the time the New Year makes an appearance, everyone's hit the Christmas slump and spent the Christmas bonus. Not to mention the fact that January (which starts off the whole vicious twelve month circle) is not the best of times to start afresh; everyone's tired, overweight, hung over, sick of every one they're related to or (the worst case scenario) broke. While we're on the broke subject, when during the year aren't we broke?? Granted January and November are the driest of months (that is in addition to all the 'birthday months' - the ones where everyone you know is born in that month), but most often we're scraping the very bottom of the barrel and the only thing that keeps us going is that elusive 'pay day' dancing away in the distant horizon.

If one does survive January, without going berserk and being institutionalised, then you're more or less prepared for the rest of the year. We should all have little certificates hung up on our walls 'So-and-so has passed, with excellent survival skills, the month of January and has qualified for the rest of the year'. What comes next - the first half of the year that just s-t-r-e-e-e-e-t-c-h-e-s ahead of you and features the patience trying, some sort of disease infected, droughty, power-crisis months. 

The 'holiday months' are no better, what with the entire human race deciding to pick the very same 'peaceful' little haven where you've decided to spend the holidays. And you're also beginning to wonder why on earth kids were put on the face of the earth (in addition to it spinning faster), that is, of course, once you've exhausted all the innovative 'keep the kids distracted' games. Just a tip, you could try a game I used to play...'The Cinderella Game' - you get the child to clean up the whole house, all the while pretending that she's going to be soon transformed into a princess - and that used to be one of my favourite games. (Geez, to think I actually thought that one up myself, what was I thinking of?) 

Then before you know it, as if a magic wand was waved, whoosh, whoosh, whoosh go the next few months and you come to the time when you start wondering where the year went (so soon), all the while lamenting, "But I haven't done anything!" And then it's December with the New Year looming ahead - like right about now - and you're all hopeful and getting ready to make you resolutions. Wait! It's a bad time to make resolutions... you're feeling all happy, happy and whatever's left of the leftover Christmas goodwill feeling deludes you into thinking that come the new year, you can really be a better person. Let me warn you now, before you do something really drastic in the next couple of days - There's no assumption on earth that could be more wrong than that! 

Why is it that somehow we all keep looking forward to the lovely things the next year will bring? I never learn myself; every card I wrote wished 'life's best' and 'lovely surprises' in the New Year. Oh dear, I had so hoped to save mankind and womankind (and every other kind) from a state of delusion. But hey, no one can say I didn't try. I suppose hope's not such a bad thing to dwell on, once in a while, in small doses. What's left to say?? All the very best for a preposterous new year!

New Year resolutions: why don't they last?

Helpful hints 
* Don't try everything at once - there's a temptation with the New Year to run off a list of everything. Better to make two than to make fifty. You can always add new resolutions to your list later. 
* Word it carefully - It forces you into thinking of the resolution as something you must do, and not something you want to do. 
* Make a plan - Nobody accomplishes anything of significance by trying to do it all at once. Just brainstorm enough to give you a place to start. 
* Write it down - write down your resolutions and your plan of action. Stick it on the fridge where you know you'll see it. That way you'll have a constant reminder of the resolution.
By Tania Fernando
It's hard not to get the resolution urge on New Year's Eve. There's that sense of renewal, of rebirth, and the guilty awareness that you ate your own weight in chocolates during the holidays. Sure, last year's resolutions didn't make it past the fifth of January, but then this year is going to be different, right?

Many of us make New Year's resolutions to change something in our lives that we know is doing us or others harm, like smoking, eating too much or drinking too heavily. But often the New Year comes and goes and nothing has changed.

Most of us don't have a clue how to make a reasonable resolution, which is why we fail to keep the ones we make. We set high goals for ourselves, then wonder why we never attain them. 

The most common resolution we found, among women was to lose weight and with men to drink and smoke less. But these were also the most broken resolutions ever made.

Being organized came a close second, with everyone thinking that in the New Year they should pay more attention to getting their daily routines into better order and being more in control of their lives. 

I am sure I could reign as a queen of broken resolutions along with a few others. 'Exercise', 'don't lose my temper', 'save money' are just a few of my failed resolutions, but they all perished not because I wasn't sincere when I made them, but just because I did absolutely nothing to make them last.

The resolutions stood firm for a few weeks and their memory returned throughout the year, mostly to make me feel guilty and ineffective. I realized that my resolutions failed because I had no plan. All I had were vague ideas (save money, be happy, get in shape).

Rozanna, an executive who lives with her mum said that she always makes the resolution of not losing her temper with her mother. "I do make other resolutions which I eventually break, but I always, very sincerely, promise myself that I will not lose my temper with my mum. Unfortunately, this particular resolution gets broken after a few days," she said. 

The other resolution she really needs to make and keep is to lose weight, but eventually she confesses that she forgets about it when she sees food in front of her. "I always postpone it and eventually it is permanently postponed."

Meanwhile, newly wed Nirantha said that his resolutions were always to stop flirting, drink less and cut down on night-clubbing. "I never seem to be able to stick to them. I really don't even know why I bother making them."

Srima, a working mother of two youngsters aged 17 years and 15 years said that her resolution is and has been to spend more time with the kids and lose weight. "From the time the kids were born, I decided never to bring work home. Although I stuck to this for a short while, as I went up the corporate ladder I had to compromise."

She went on to say that now that the kids are older and seem to be doing their own thing the time they spend together is very little. "My diet too seems to fly out of the window after the few days of the year."

Meanwhile, Sonali, a housewife who has a one-year-old baby said that she hates cooking and always makes a resolution to try and like it more. "My husband really enjoys good food and I make this very fervent resolution that I have to learn to cook, but after a few days I realize how much I hate it."

Fifteen-year-old Serena said that her perpetual resolution is to study harder. "When I don't do it in January, I postpone it to February and then to March and it goes on till we come to the end of the year again."

The New Year has always been identified as a time for looking back at the past year, and more importantly forward to the coming year. A time to reflect on the changes we want or often need, if we're to have the motivation to move forward. 

Resolutions are a reflection of one's belief that what a person does on the first day of the New Year will have an effect on us throughout the entire year. I am not sure how far it is true, but it's still become a part of our lives. So let's hope this year is going to be different. 

Good luck and Happy New Year !!!

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