New Year, Same Me


Alexa Ward, Editor-in-Chief

New Year’s Eve is a time when the whole globe comes together to celebrate one thing: Hope. Hope for a new year full of new beginnings and opportunities to do better than we have in the past. It’s a time to strive for individual improvement and a big part of that is the illustrious New Year’s resolution. For decades, society has encouraged people to set these resolutions for self-improvement. While setting a resolution is commonplace, sticking with a resolution is rare.

According to Finder, in 2020, about 74% of the US population set a New Year’s resolution. Only about 14% of resolution-setters claimed to achieve or still be doing their set goal. 23% of people quit their goal by the end of the first week, and 64% by the end of the first month.

Teens and young adults (14-34) are the most likely to set a resolution. However, the older the age group, the less likely they are to establish goals for the New Year. Young adults are also twice as likely to stick with their resolutions as older generations.

One of the main reasons for goal abandonment, however, is that they aren’t written down and planned.

In CCISD, we talk in advisory each year about setting SMART Goals, which stands for Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Time-Bound. According to INC, SMART goals have a 90% higher success rate than goal setting that is not written out and planned. Despite the evidence only 3% of people who set goals write out the steps they are going to take to achieve it.

When creating a New Year’s resolution, the goal is often self-improvement. According to, 23% of those surveyed in 2021 said they were going to live healthier, 21% said personal improvement or happiness, 20% said losing weight, 16% set career or job-related goal and 13% were financial related.

But how can you self-improve if you’re goal achieving tends unproductive? Being specific and planning out each step of the resolution is key to succeeding in your self-improvement this year. Instead of “working out more,” commit to going to the gym every Tuesday and Thursday. Instead of “eating better,” decide to have a vegetable with every meal you eat. Once you know what you specifically need to do to achieve your goal, you’re much more likely to continue taking the fulfilling and self-improving steps.

Another big reason for goal abandonment is that people haven’t prepared themselves to complete their goals. While writing a plan is part of that, sometimes there are certain changes you need to make in your life before your goal is even possible. For example, if somebody’s goal was to go back to school in the fall, they would need to be able to fill out college applications now, which means they will need to clear time in their schedule to do so and make sure they have the funds to pay for application fees etc.

Choosing to set a New Year’s resolution can be great, but only if you’re prepared to do the planning and prep necessary to see it through. Otherwise, don’t worry about making yourself be ready for a goal just because it’s the start of a new year. You can start your road to self-improvement at any time, just try and be the best person you can be every day.