What’s your New Year’s Resolution?

By Debbie Bell/County Health Department Published:

It is hard to believe another year has come and nearly gone. As we prepare to say farewell to 2012, many will take a look back on the past 12 months with feelings of accomplishment, joy and fond memories, while others may struggle with disappointment, loss and regret. Regardless of your situation, the hope and plans for a fresh start lies just on the horizon as we prepare to welcome a new year and all of its possibilities.

According to Wikipedia, “A New Year’s Resolution is a commitment that a person makes to one or more personal goals, projects, or the reforming of a habit. A key element to a New Year’s Resolution that sets it apart from other resolutions is that it is made in anticipation of the New Year and new beginnings.”

Typically, individuals that make these declarations anticipate doing so for the entirety of the following year. A key component of many New Year’s Resolutions is the hope of a prosperous and healthier lifestyle.

The tradition of making a “New Year’s Resolution” has religious origins. Some of the earliest accounts began with the ancient Babylonians making promises to their gods at the beginning of each New Year often vowing to settle debts. Later in Rome, some made such declarations to their god Janus with a moral component: to do good by others.

Additional parallels include Judaism’s New Year known as Rosh Hashanah and culminating in Yom Kippur or their Day of Atonement, where one is to reflect upon their wrongdoings over the year and both seek and offer forgiveness. The goal, regardless of belief, was to yearly reflect upon improving ones self.

Today some of the most popular New Year’s Resolutions include: eating healthier foods; getting a better education; getting a better job; getting fit by becoming more physically active; losing weight; managing debt; managing stress; quitting smoking; volunteering to help others and taking a trip.

Interestingly, more than half of these famous commitments have positive physical and mental health impacts when individuals achieve their goals. Unfortunately, the majority of people that embark on these journeys fail.

According to a 2007 study by Richard Wisemen from the University of Bristol involving 3,000 subjects demonstrated that 88 percent of those individuals that set New Year’s Resolutions fail. The reasons for this poor outcome can range from lack of peer and/or family support, to loss of interest and lack of time.

The Franklin County Mobilizing for Action through Planning and Partnerships (MAPP) has made its goal to assist those within the community that are seeking a means to a healthier lifestyle. One such venture the partnership is proud to see come to completion is the development of a Physical Activity Resource Guide illustrating most of the physical activity outlets within Frankfort and Franklin County. MAPP encourages all residents to watch for your own copy of this valuable publication in the coming weeks in your own State Journal and Advantage.

For more information and resources to assist you in your own New Year’s Resolution to improve your lifestyle, visit the Franklin County Health Department at www.fchd.org.

Here’s to your Health!

Want to leave your comments?

Sign in or Register to comment.