The practice of consciously resolving to improve one's actions and attitudes towards the way one lives one's life is grounded in ancient tradition and culture. The 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. At watchnight services, held on New Year's Eve, many Christians prepare for the year ahead by praying and making these resolutions. 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. Source
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According to TIME Lists, these are the ten most commonly broken New Year's Resolutions:
- Lose Weight and Get Fit
- Quit Smoking
- Learn Something New
- Eat Healthier and Diet
- Get Out of Debt and Save Money
- Spend More Time with Family
- Travel to New Places
- Be Less Stressed
- Drink Less
The internet has an abundance of articles about how to make and to keep resolutions. Psychcentral.com suggests we resolve to be more generous, Huffington Post has an article on common New Year's Resolution mistakes and how to fix them. However, my interest today is in the promises we will make to further our personal progress towards self-actualization, the pinnacle of Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs.
As poets, artists, photographers and writers we are constantly pushing ourselves to express our creative thought process to the best of our ability. Before you set to work writing for this challenge, take some time to consider your goals and resolutions for your creative aspirations in 2014.
The challenge is entirely open to personal interpretation of the theme: "Resolutions" and the poem you write for this challenge may be reflective, narrative, analytical or abstract.