Creating lasting change in 2018


Emmeline Roney

World traveler Emmeline Roney ’19 gives her monthly insight into both the joys and frustrations of life at East Grand Rapids High School.

Emmeline Roney, Staff Writer

I understand why so many people detest New Year’s. Year after year, people pinpoint the sources of their failures — be it dietary or academic inadequacy, an abuse of smoking or drinking, or otherwise —  easily remedied as “New Year’s Resolutions.” All year we promise ourselves that, come January, these blemishes in our health or figure will dissipate with 2017.

The new year is upon us — the time to turn over a new leaf. However, there is something faulty in our belief that the arrival of 2018 will supply the catalyst, motivation, and persistence needed to keep our New Year’s Resolutions all year. In fact, more often than not, we are setting ourselves up for failure by vowing to make life altering changes that will be extremely difficult to keep.

We make charts, set reminders in our phones, and pin inspirational quotes and plans off of pinterest. Some of us wake up and face the biting January cold every morning, finally going for the runs we promise to take everyday for the rest of the upcoming year. However, when people can no longer keep themselves subsequently intact, dazzled by their own dedication, the steady backsliding begins.

Most of the resolutions people chose are inherently rewardless and demand merciless devotion. As such, it makes sense that a whopping 80 percent of New Year’s Resolutions fail by February, according to a 2017 study done by “The Guardian.” How then can we make, and keep, a New Year’s Resolution?

Most resolutions fail because they are not the right resolutions. People tend to choose their resolutions based off of what society is telling them to change, then make vague promises, promises for reform without any realistic plan for accomplishment.

We need to take baby steps towards new habits, and refocus our resolutions to flaws in our mentality rather than figure. A happy demeanor tends to follow suit with healthy habits. In order to look back on 2018 as a year of intense growth rather than the year you made a fervent effort to eat more kale or juul less, resolutions must be achievable, specific, and relevant to you.