With the traditions and excitement of the holiday season upon us, we are only a few weeks from welcoming the year 2013 to our planet. With the ringing in of a new year comes hope, dreams, expectations and plans brimming with the promise of a calendar fresh and untouched. It sits like a field of snow begging for footprints. With promise and only the very best of intentions, we oblige and cast our net of things we resolve to do better at this year than we did previously. As each year wears on, it becomes apparent which resolutions we were serious about and which ones were a bit of a reach. Each consecutive year brings goals that once seemed distant much closer to attainability and we go further, indeed in reaching those goals.
The history of New Year’s resolutions dates back to Rome in the year 153 BCE when the god Janus was placed at the beginning of the calendar year in the first month. Janus is believed to be able to see both past and future at the same time, and thus, is associated with the ability to atone for the past and set new plans for the future. People used to give gifts and make atonement for the things they regretted from the previous year. So, today we look to the future in one-year increments and determine to be better people.
The most common area of personal improvement to be included on any list of resolutions involves the betterment of our physical health. Whether we resolve to lose weight, quit smoking, eat healthier, drink fewer alcoholic beverages or embrace a more active lifestyle, our physique tops the charts for most commonly vowed resolutions. With that in mind and the holiday season midway to completion, many people set goals to limit indulgence during the season of festivities. Despite the best intentions of every year’s resolutions, Australia’s obesity rate in 2011-2012 has increased to 63.4% of the entire population. With obesity to blame for a shocking number of ailments and deaths each year, this year, our resolutions might need an extra boost.
Many healthcare professionals worry that the rates of obesity and weight-related health issues will rise and for the first time in history, parents will begin outliving their children as a result. As the future of the next generation hangs in the balance, it’s time for each of us to make a conscious effort to make choices this year that impact that reality. To help us with the daily grind of getting out and making a difference with our diet and exercise, insurance companies are beginning to offer incentives that encourage adults to pursue a healthy lifestyle.
This year, when you take pen to paper and write that declaration of determination for 2013, do so with full awareness of what such a choice could mean for yourself and other family members. Compare health insurance for the best fit to your family’s needs and goals. Choose a company that will encourage your goals and plans this year. Whether you plan to give up a bad habit, start a good one, or get better at habits you already keep, make sure you get the most of your plans.
This year, take advantage of all the tools and incentives at your disposal to make sure you’re set for success on next year’s goals. Resolution time for 2014 will see you reaching beyond this year’s goal rather than for the same old thing year after year. Dedication and hard work are sure to be part of the equation, but you have more than yourself to answer to this time!
Photo Credit: FBellon (CC BY 2.0)
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