Alden Boon

How to Finally Achieve One Miserable New Year’s Resolution


The month of December is a time when you are most hopeful and ambitious (I blame the Christmas lights). You make lots of promises to yourself, like eating an apple a day, or putting yourself out there without getting caught by your spouse, or in Ross Gellar’s case: do one new thing every day. But come January, your motivation level plummets like a sugar crash. The third week of January is the critical, now-or-never time — you will either get on board with your last year’s goals or forsake and backburner them utterly, as you did in the past years. Here are some tips for you to forge on.

Be negative

Nothing lights a fire under your belly like negative motivation. While scrolling through Facebook and Instagram, what stirs up feelings of jealousy? Seeing your colleague’s photos of Iceland or Switzerland? Quit your job pronto and travel! What makes your anger fester? Your childhood friend’s engagement announcement? Go on Tinder and marry the other half of your first successful match. Those negative feelings are your impetuses to succeed.

Buy (a lot of) things that aid your journey

Did you make a New Year’s resolution to lose weight? If so, it is time to invest in a new fitness smartband and a heart rate monitor. When it comes to resolutions, pristine material things are the carrots. But you have got to pace yourself with all the shopping — the novelty wears off quickly (it ranges from one to two weeks). So time your next buy — a pair of sports shoes, perhaps — just when you are about to tire of clocking one thousand steps a day. Decided to travel more because your boss could not stop yakking about how the local food does not hold a candle to the delicacies in Taiwan? Get a new luggage, then new winter and summer wear, then a camera (then new lenses), then a new house in your bucket-list countries.

P.S: This does not work if you resolved to spend less money.

Assemble your own squad

The applause, the cheers, the lights, the adulation — the adrenaline surge that athletes get propels them to achieve personal bests. You are doomed to fail if you do not have your own cheerleading squad to push you to greatness. The great news is you already have a multitude of cheerleaders at your disposal: They are all on Facebook, their likes and “wow” reactions a mere click away. But it is not enough to update your Facebook statuses — people don’t like to see their friends succeed. So, instead, start a new Facebook Page, and use that Page to air your milestones. Then, boost your posts so that you can reach a wide group of audience.

When you want to quit, think about why you start

Chances are you embarked on a fitness journey because someone commented you had put on a little weight. Or called you a “good for nothing”. Make a crime board, or even better, wall. On this wall go the photos of all the people who have ever criticised you, and the corresponding comments. Stare at it every day, let the words internalise, and vow to make these detractors eat their words so you can have the last laugh.

P.S: This does not work if your New Year’s resolution is to laugh more.


Alden Boon
Alden Boon is a Quarter-finalist in PAGE International Screenwriting Awards. When he's not busy writing, he pretends he is Gandalf.

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