Our New Year resolutions — Nigerians
By Maria Famakinwa
A New Year resolution has become a tradition in most parts of the world. It is when a person resolves to continue good practices, change an undesired trait or behavior, accomplish a personal goal, or otherwise improve their behaviors at the beginning of a calendar year.
It is generally believed that changing the way things are done can bring opportunities for great success. However, findings revealed that many who made resolutions in the past reneged before the first quarter of the same year, due to many reasons. As we kickstart the new year, some citizens spoke with The Hope about their new year resolutions.
A public servant, Mr Oladuni Anibaba, said that his new year resolution is to start his Master’s degree which he disclosed was stopped last year because of huge financial responsibility. The man who added that starting his second-degree was long overdue vowed to break the jinx this year because it’s tied to his promotion.
His words: “You cannot be doing something the same way and expect a different result. This year is my year to break the long-time jinx holding me down academically and move forward. Starting my master’s program is my priority this year, because it is tied to many opportunities for me. I must improve on myself academically this year for a better life. I pray God see me through,” he said.
In the submission of a salary earner, Mr Olawale Clement: “To serve God better this year. I want to focus more on God this year and do things that will make me happy. Another new year resolution I want to stick to is to avoid online loans which impacted negatively on my finances last year, and which I am still battling with. Once I am done with the last payment, I will delete the application on my phone and live within my means. The foolish idea of borrowing a loan to settle another loan will be a thing of the past in my life this year. I want to live enough for the moment and stop procrastinating, focus more on my family and try to make them happy.
“People need to be guided not to let the situation of the country affect them, because almost everything in the country is making citizens sad. It takes only those who are determined to be happy. I will also do away with friends who never see anything good in me but always discourage me. They don’t add any value to one but pull one down. My first step this year is to tell those friends off which I have started already, because to make headway, such fair-weather friends must be bade goodbye.”
To a businessman, Mr Oluseyi Babalola, his well-being is paramount. He wants to pay more attention to his health and stop taking alcohol which he revealed has been difficult for him to stop.
He said: “If there is anything I want to say my new year resolution is, it is to pay more attention to my health. Throughout last year, I was in and out of the hospital due to my failure to yield to the doctor’s advice. If need be, I will relocate to another state to avoid friends who lure me to the beer parlour. My blood pressure has not been normal. I was just discharged on December 29 last year after being admitted for a week. I love my wife and children and I am not ready to leave them now.
“I need to take drastic steps to save my situation. Battling different ailments when I am not up to 60 is disturbing. My mother is 82 years old and she is still very strong and agile. I want to reduce my meat consumption and eat more fruits and vegetables. I was also advised to exercise more which I must obey. Caring for my health is my new year resolution.”
Also, a commercial driver, Mr. Ike Onah, disclosed that his new year resolution is to be faithful to his wife whom he described as a faithful and submissive woman. The man who said that he did not have any savings last year because of his numerous concubines added that he has been warned by his pastor to be faithful to his wife this year to avoid God’s wrath.
His words: “To be faithful to my wife is my priority this year. This I will struggle to avoid God’s wrath, according to my pastor’s warning. One thing about my pastor is that once he says a thing, it will come to pass. Not only this, my finances have been affected. I hardly provide for my home, yet I am working. Keeping numerous girls was my greatest undoing last year. I was affected that I could not care for my children during the festive season. I have learned my bitter lessons and promised to turn a new leaf. If not for anything, at least to avoid God’s wrath.”
In the words of a trader at Oja-Oba market, Mrs Bolajoko Adesegun, she wants to avoid obtaining a microfinance loan this year, to have peace of mind. She said, “Throughout last year, I could not boast of any savings because of the loan I obtained from microfinance banks that I am still paying now. Once I finish the payment in May this year, I will never go back for another loan again. I don’t mind selling sachet water, if need be, instead of paying loans through my nose.
“Honestly, it was like I worked for microfinance banks last year because I could not account for any profits. The majority of traders here who borrowed from the same place have similar experiences. What is the essence of struggling without gains? If you fail to pay when you should, that is additional interest which you must look for ways to pay if you don’t want trouble. I am tired of living a life of debt and I have vowed never to return to them again, once I am done with the one I am still servicing,” she said.
A civil servant, Mrs. Toyin Akinyemi, said that her new year resolution is to listen more and talk less. She said: “This year, I want to talk less and avoid arguing with anybody. I discovered last year that I had issues with some people because of arguments. This will be corrected this year, at least to be at peace with everybody, because there is nothing in this world. I hate the impression people have about me due to my character and I will do everything to be more quiet this year,” she said.
In the submission of a civil servant, Mr Tunde Jimoh, his new year resolutions are to quit smoking, and gambling and get married. ”I want to marry before the end of the first quarter of this year and be responsible. My parents are not happy with my way of life, but the more I try to adjust the more difficult it is. Come to think of it, for the past three years that I have been gambling, I have nothing to show for it except pain and regrets. At 38, I have no savings because of gambling. My mind is made up already and I hope this year will be a turning point for me. The first thing I will do is to stop gambling which I have started already. For the past two weeks, I have not visited the place and I am determined to continue. I also want to get married this year because my parents have been stressing me about it. My mother threatened to pack into my house if I refuse to settle down this year. Much is expected from me as the first child, especially now that two of my younger ones are married.”
On how he would achieve his new year resolutions, he explained that he had resolved to do away with bad friends who always lured him to beer parlour and pray to be accepted by his former fiance who left him because of his attitude. “My fiance left me last year after she discovered that I didn’t change but now that I am a changed person, I am ready to beg for her forgiveness. I will visit her and beg her because she has been praying all this while for me to change and my family like her. Honestly, by next year, I would have been a different person entirely,” he promised.
An okada rider, Mr Felix Olorunwa, said his new year resolution is to go fully into farming to cushion the effect of the fuel subsidy removal. The man who revealed that he has already gotten a plot of land to farm added that riding okada is not as profitable as it was when he started the business four years ago, and to attend to his family’s needs, he has put a plan in place to start farming this year for additional income. He also revealed that another important new year resolution is to control his anger which many have known him for.
However, a businesswoman, Mrs. Funmi Ayeyemi, argued that she did not believe in new year resolutions because many who made resolutions hardly keep them till the second month of the year instead, she will take things as they come and be more careful.
According to her, ” Many are making new year resolutions to be heard. If one is truly ready to change positively, it is not until you announce it to the whole world. Let people see the change in you and not you telling people you want to change. Merely announcing it makes it difficult for them to fulfill, because they are already under pressure. Pressure makes fulfilling the new year resolutions on the part of many difficult. Some people make yearly resolutions without any change because it takes determination and discipline to fulfill new year resolutions, and not mere saying,” she noted.