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2021 Why the New Year Resolutions Are Different This Year

With the dawn of a new year, we make a list of goals and resolve to achieve them. We follow them for a few months or days and then give up.

New Year Resolutions

New Year Resolutions

The New Year

The New Year merely changes the dates. But the power to change your life still remains in your hands.

The past year saw extraordinary events unfold as the coronavirus brought on the world the worst public health and economic breakdown since the Spanish flu in 1918 and the Great Depression in 1929.

The year made us realize that we had brought upon ourselves a calamity unprecedented in modern times.

The Year 2020 taught us that nothing goes as per our plans

We had many plans for that year, plans for fitness, travel, work but instead, we had to stay at home. Now the only thing that matters is that we are safe with our families. What is important is that we look out for each other and be kind and compassionate not only to others but to ourselves.

Because of the pandemic, and the insecurity and anxiety prevailing, it is difficult to keep up with the resolutions. Experts even say they could be counterproductive as not achieving the goals can increase stress, and affect health adversely.

People start the year with ambitious resolutions and get stressed out trying to achieve them. At this point in time, with so much uncertainty around, it is better we aim for achievable short-term goals than intimidating ones. Goals that help us prioritize and manage the situation.

Short term Goals to set this year

  • Time is limited. Use it wisely, constructively.
  • Do not procrastinate.
  • Take good care of your health.
  • Let go of the past. Plan for a better future
  • Start every day as a new day, a new beginning
  • Start a gratitude journal, let go of negativity
  • Connect more with friends, family, be a good listener
  • Be kind to yourself. Workout daily and rest often
  • Practice mindful meditation, yoga, and breathing exercises to relieve stress
  • Inculcate an easy hobby, read a book every day, listen to music
Quote by C S Lewis

Quote by C S Lewis

A Shift in Attitude

Apart from short-term goals, some important aspects need to be addressed this year so that mass destruction of this scale can be avoided in the future. It seems like this virus is going to stay with us for a long time and we have to search for methods to cope by changing our lifestyle and habits. The vaccine has brought hope this year. Advanced technology like artificial intelligence, big data, and techniques like gene editing are tools that help us in the fight against this virus. Nature has endowed us with innate qualities to survive and thrive but we have brought upon ourselves this calamity through acts of selfishness, negligence, and materialistic tendencies. In the name of economic growth and modernization, we have destroyed rainforests and exploited nature. Experts believe that this pandemic is a result of this exploitative and consumerist mindset of people. We need to change this materialistic attitude, opt for green initiatives, and work for green growth.

Conspicuous Lifestyle

The last year has taught us to live with less and still be well. Frugal living can be the key to happiness. We have learned to distinguish between what is really needed and what gives us pleasure. The pandemic has taught us the value of thoughtful and selective consumption. Let us resolve this year to live with less and help those in need. Let us derive pleasure from a meaningful life than seek it in objects and possessions. Discipline in spending should be an important resolution this year. The lesson learned from the Pandemic is the uncertainty of life. It is time we adopted a simpler life, stop running after materialistic accumulations, and find true inner happiness that is lasting.

Work Life

Work dominated our existence to such an extent that we had no time for our family and loved ones. We used to be guilty even to ask for leave, even though what we were seeking was our own time, earned rightfully, and well deserved. Productivity, targets, achievement meant more to us than spending time with our family, bonding, and caring for the family. Maternity leave rules are still lacking in many countries and paternity leave is frowned upon.

In metropolitan cities, we spent considerable time commuting to work every day which today we know is a sheer waste of time. This is a good time to look at options of work from home wherever feasible. Virtual meetings are far more efficient and productive. Working from small towns should be explored. Technology has made geography less relevant. So much expenditure in the cost of living in bigger cities can be saved and pollution can be avoided.

Strong Healthcare system

The pandemic has made us realize the importance of a robust healthcare system. Because the next pandemic could be worse. The mutated form of the virus could wreak more havoc. We need to be prepared. The authorities need to invest more in public health. Without a sound healthcare system, economic development is impossible. Pandemics do not discriminate and protecting a few and ignoring many can be disastrous. Though great advancements have been made in technology, Medicare, and other methods to improve the quality of life and cure diseases, a majority of the world’s population lacks basic healthcare which needs to be addressed urgently.

Interconnected and Interdependent

The past year has taught us that at the end of the day we have to depend on each other for survival. The pandemic has been an equalizer. The virus does not spare anyone, whatever their rank or status in society may be. While the privileged still have access to better healthcare facilities, there is no magical solution for richer people. During such crises, we all need one another.

The rapid spread of the disease across the globe resulting in numerous fatalities proves not only the need to step up public healthcare systems but also how interdependent and interconnected we are. On the positive side, it has also helped us share information, breakthroughs, and remedies and helped limit the spread of the disease.

Power of Scientific Method

The pandemic has made us realize the importance of science and the scientific method. When the coronavirus first struck, we did not know much about it. It was the first time this virus was transferred to humans from an animal host causing a completely new disease. Treatment or cure for this disease was not known. It is at this time science and scientific temperament came to our rescue. Because of their ceaseless efforts, we have been able to deal with the pandemic, discovered solutions to limit the spread of the virus, and come up with affordable strategies to fight the virus. More encouragement needs to be given to science more funds for scientific research need to be sanctioned.

Diet and Health

Covid 19 catastrophe brings to light the dangers of animal viruses being transmitted to humans. As man erodes the natural habitats and destroys forests in the name of economic growth and modernization, animals lose their natural habitat disrupting the ecological balance. Amazon rain forests have been destroyed; even wild animals killed for meat. It is believed the virus originated in the wet market at China’s Wuhan. In 2021 we cannot afford to go back to excessive meat diets, wasteful plastics, and fossil fuels. We need to move toward green initiatives, and green growth to avoid the vicious cycle of deadly viruses and extreme climatic changes. Recognizing that this health crisis is a result of a wider ecological crisis is the first step in this change.

Healing and Growth

Let us make 2021 a year of healing. We have to channel our inner resources and become stronger, more resilient, and courageous to rise above the catastrophe that prevailed last year. With the promises of vaccines and new treatment therapies, there is optimism in the air for us this year. So, let us heal ourselves and those around us with compassion, courage, and hope. The previous year has been a year of challenges for us. The primary goal was to survive and stay safe. Steps to rebuild economies, improve lives, enhance growth and health are the main focus this new year. We should not let our guard down in the illusion of normalcy and revert to our old ways. Let us stay united, follow the safety guidelines, save lives, and stay safe. We should strive to make the new year a year of positivity, Healing, growth, and stability. By combined effort, this virus can be defeated and normalcy reclaimed.

In Conclusion

The year 2020 made us think about a lot of things and brought about immense, unprecedented changes in our life. The return to normalcy is still a long way ahead. Let us start 2021 with a new vision and a new resolve to change. Let us collectively set goals that are achievable and bring measurable progress. And not just make goals but act upon those goals so as to make a difference to our lives and the lives of people around us. In the end

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.



VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on January 07, 2021:

Thanks, Peggy for the nice comments. Many believe that this pandemic was waiting to happen, because of man's materialistic and exploitative habits. We need to change our attitude and work towards greener and healthier options.

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on January 07, 2021:

Thanks, Denise for the visit and nice comments. Last year taught us we were so unprepared for a calamity of this magnitude. It made us realize how we need to focus more on important areas such as healthcare, science, and research along with technology.

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on January 07, 2021:

Thanks Flourish for the visit and the comments. Last year proved that all no plans or resolutions hold in the face of a calamity. Psychologists say new year resolutions can be inspiring and help in improving performance. i think it is better to have short term achievable goals than ambitious difficult to achieves ones.

FlourishAnyway from USA on January 07, 2021:

I don't usually make New Year's resolutions. This year, however, my dad talked me into doing a 16/8 fast regimen but I'm doing it just for January. I like your mention of reduced plastics.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on January 06, 2021:

Your article is timely and excellent. Many of the changes to our normal lifestyles caused by the pandemic may spark important changes going forward. You have mentioned many important topics in your article that need addressing for the sake of all humankind.

Denise McGill from Fresno CA on January 06, 2021:

Last year has made us think of many things differently. I appreciate this look ahead and I agree with more financial conservation as well as keeping healthy. Happy new year.



VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on January 06, 2021:

Thanks, Pamela for the visit and the nice comments. I did not make any resolutions this year too. I have decided to take each day as it comes Though positive psychologists say that making new year resolutions can be motivating. Especially when we achieve the goals enumerated by us in the list, it increases dopamine and endorphins in our body and makes us happy and satisfied.

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on January 06, 2021:

Thanks, Lora for the visit and for the kind comments. The previous year has been like no other. It has certainly made us rethink our values and priorities. The increase of zoonotic diseases is the result of man's interference with nature. Wildlife trade has to be banned and people have to learn to live in harmony with all other living creatures of the world. Only then can we hope to survive. Happy New Year to you Lora, have a safe and healthy year.

Pamela Oglesby from Sunny Florida on January 06, 2021:

This is a very good article, and I agree with you, Vidya The resolutions or even short term goals ae certainly different this year. You make very good points about the virus and we do have to depend on each other.

I decided I would not make resoutions during this pandemic, but maybe I need to rethink that idea. I think this is an eye-opening article, and I really liked your message. I hope you have a very happy new year.

Lora Hollings on January 05, 2021:

This is such an incredible article, Vidya, that I hope many will read. You made some really important points about this virus, hopefully, bringing about longterm positive changes in the way we think, live, and vote too! It certainly has made us realize that cataclysmic changes can happen at any time and we have to be flexible and willing to reorder our priorities. We have decimated our forests and shown our wildlife such little respect at our own peril. I wholeheartedly agree with you when you say that this virus is the result of a wider ecological crisis. We need to ban all of these wildlife markets, and all of us need to realize the value in living simpler and more in harmony with nature. And yes, we need to shift our excessive meat diets to a plant based diet which is much more sustainable and healthier for us too. A Happy New Year to you!

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on January 05, 2021:

Thanks Eric for the visit and the comments. This last year has caused havoc like no other. Hope the new year brings about some changes. The vaccine is a relief. Happy New Year, stay safe, stay healthy.

VIDYA D SAGAR (author) on January 05, 2021:

Thanks Brenda for the visit and the comments. Many people have not opted to make resolutions this year. The way in which everything got disrupted last year, we don't feel motivated to make any resolutions this year. It is best to take one day at a time.

The vaccine surely has brought cheer this new year. They are yet to start administering here. Praying that it is effective. The new strain has already

started spreading. This type of Pandemic is a first for us all. Hope things get better soon and normalcy returns.

BRENDA ARLEDGE from Washington Court House on January 05, 2021:

I love your lists. Letting go of the past & realixing our time is limited are good ones.

The vaccine is bringing hope but it is slow going in my county. Maybe the government needs to deploy a little help in smaller areas so people can get the vaccine a bit quicker.

This year I made no resolutions. I am just content to be here another day & see yet another new year.

May it bring us all a better year. I surely never thought I would see the likes of this virus during my lifetime...now I understand people who suffered so long ago.

Eric Dierker from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A. on January 05, 2021:

I like it. It rings very true.