"May the New Year bring you courage to break your resolutions early. My own plan is to swear off every kind of virtue, so that I triumph even when I fall." (Robert Clark)
"The proper behavior all through the holiday season is to be drunk. This drunkenness culminates on New Year's Eve, when you get so drunk you kiss the person you're married to." (P. J. O'Rourke)
New Year's is a harmless annual institution, of no particular use to anybody save as a scapegoat for promiscuous drunks, and friendly calls and humbug resolutions. (Mark Twain)
Youth is when you're allowed to stay up late on New Year's Eve. Middle age is when you're forced to.
New Year's Resolution: To tolerate fools more gladly, provided this does not encourage them to take up more of my time.
An optimist stays up until midnight to see the New Year in. A pessimist stays up to make sure the old year leaves.
New Year's Day is every man's birthday.
Cheers to a New Year and another chance for us to get it right.
New Year's Day now is the accepted time to make your regular annual good resolutions. Next week you can begin paving hell with them as usual.
Many people look forward to the New Year for a new start on old habits.
May all your troubles last as long as your New Year's resolutions.
Good resolutions are simply checks that men draw on a bank where they have no account.
I'm a little bit older, a little bit wiser, a little bit rounder, but still none the wiser.
A New Year's resolution is something that goes in one Year and out the other.
From New Year's on the outlook brightens; good humor lost in a mood of failure returns. I resolve to stop complaining.
G. K. Chesterton
The object of a New Year is not that we should have a new year. It is that we should have a new soul and a new nose; new feet, a new backbone, new ears, and new eyes. Unless a particular man made New Year resolutions, he would make no resolutions. Unless a man starts afresh about things, he will certainly do nothing effective. Unless a man starts on the strange assumption that he has never existed before, it is quite certain that he will never exist afterwards. Unless a man be born again, he shall by no means enter into the Kingdom of Heaven.
A New Year's resolution is a secular tradition in which a person makes a promise to undertake an act of self-improvement or something nice, such as opening doors for people or smiling at taxi drivers beginning from New Year's Day.
The ancient Babylonians made promises to their gods at the start of each year that they would return borrowed objects and pay their debts.
The Romans began each year by making promises to the god Janus, for whom the month of January is named.
In the Medieval era, the knights took the "peacock vow" at the end of the Christmas season each year to re-affirm their commitment to chivalry.
There are other religious parallels to this tradition. During Judaism's New Year, Rosh Hashanah, through the High Holidays and culminating in Yom Kippur (the Day of Atonement), one is to reflect upon one's wrongdoings over the year and both seek and offer forgiveness. People may act similarly during the Catholic fasting period of Lent, though the motive behind this holiday is more of sacrifice than of responsibility, in fact the practice of New Year's resolutions partially came from the Lenten sacrifices.
The concept, regardless of creed, is to reflect upon self-improvement annually.
Some examples include resolutions to donate to the poor more often, to become more assertive, or to become more environmentally responsible.
Popular goals include resolutions to:
A 2007 study by Richard Wiseman from the University of Bristol involving 3,000 people showed that 88% of those who set New Year resolutions fail, despite the fact that 52% of the study's participants were confident of success at the beginning.
Men achieved their goal 22% more often when they engaged in goal setting, (a system where small measurable goals are being set; such as, a pound a week, instead of saying "lose weight"), while women succeeded 10% more when they made their goals public and got support from their friends.
It is also noted that talking with a counselor about setting goals and new year resolutions can help people keep their resolutions.