This New Year’s Eve, baby boomers will make New Year’s resolutions for 2015, vowing to do everything from lose weight, get more sleep and exercise to reduce the stress in their lives and save more money. We all have good intentions when we make these resolutions, but keeping them is a different story. Once 2015 begins, many of us will continue with our daily routine and somehow, our promised resolutions will get lost in the routine of our daily lives.
This may be why most New Year’s resolutions are like boomerangs – they keep coming back. We pledge the same resolution year after year, always with good intentions, but odds are only about half of us will keep it. So why do we make New Year’s resolutions in the first place?
The tradition of New Year resolutions actually dates back 4000 years when the Babylonians celebrated the spring harvest, according to Lifescience.com, although ‘their oaths were external rather than internally focused.’ The ancient Romans had a similar tradition to ring in the New Year centuries later.
Today, New Year’s resolutions have gone global and many Americans make at least one each year. Just like baby boomers, the general population looks inward and focuses on self-improvement when making resolutions. According to USA.gov, the most popular American New Year’s Resolutions are to:
- lose weight;
- volunteer to help others;
- quit smoking;
- get a better education;
- get a better job;
- save money;
- get fit;
- eat healthy food;
- manage stress; and
- manage debt.
The New Year’s resolutions baby boomers make largely mirror those of the greater population. Boomer resolutions usually range from self-improvement and helping others to personal desires like traveling and participating in upcoming events, according to 55places.com. Other boomers tend to focus on things like managing debt, saving money, overall financial issues and planning for retirement.
55place found some of the most common baby boomer New Year’s resolutions to be:
- exercise more and be more active;
- lose weight and eat healthier;
- travel more often;
- assess retirement savings; and
- volunteer for a cause.
So, will most boomer 2015 resolutions include these goals? Or will boomers even be inclined to make resolutions for 2015?
A recent CBS News poll shows fewer of us are actually making resolutions these days and only about half of us keep them. This 2013 poll found that 68 percent of Americans no longer make New Year’s resolutions, up 10 percent from 2011, and it is the baby boomer generation who is less likely to make them.
So, this New Year’s Eve, as baby boomers celebrate the arrival of 2015, most of the New Year’s resolutions they make will be aspirational and some will be honored, but many more are likely to be boomerangs, coming back again next year.