It’s that time again – to make your New Year’s resolution. According to Peter Economy, 80% of us participate in this holiday ritual, each and every year. But only 8% of us stay focused and committed enough to follow through and make it happen. Wow! That is an incredible amount of people that gave up and half of you surrender to the pressure before January 31st. My experience has been that when most people set a resolution, you do not decide on just “how” you are going to achieve your desired goal. Here we go again talking about goals. Setting goals is the first step to becoming successful. Coming up with a plan on “how” you are going to implement obtaining that goal is crucial.
It is like saying I am going to live a life of luxury with a great job, making a lot of money. Then you fail to monitor your expenses. How many people have we read about, or know, that end up spending more than they earn and getting into trouble? This is a perfect example of having a goal but not setting up the implementation (budget) or having a clear idea about what success looks like on your journey to having a life of luxury. The majority of people today, have no patience with obtaining success. True prosperity requires planning, implementation and lots and lots of patience. All throughout the process, it is 100% certain that you will have to periodically analyze what you are doing and then adjust your process. You will then need to tweak and continue implementing it. Does this all sound too complicated? If it was easy, it would not be worth it. If it was easy, everyone would be doing it.
Do you want to set a realistic New Year’s resolution and be able to keep it? I can help. We can do it together. Five of the top ten resolutions are associated with getting healthy in some way, shape or form. Whatever your resolution, write it down on a piece of paper. Ask yourself if it is attainable. Getting healthy is VERY attainable. REALLY think about why you haven’t been able to achieve this goal in the past. Is it your goal or your family’s goal for you? How would your life change if you were successful? Do you understand that it will take hard work? If you are committed to seeing this resolution through to the end, make a plan. You may need to make monthly, weekly and even daily strategies. Most certainly, being able to stick to your regiment means that you will have to make some lifestyle changes. Incorporate these changes into your plan. Relying on will power is dangerous, and almost always, sure-fire plan to fail.
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Decide what you will do when you get discouraged and, believe me, you will have times that you will “fall off the wagon” or get frustrated. Designate a friend to vent to and who will then, put you back on track. Tell people about your goal and ask them to encourage you. This is accountability at its highest. We hate disappointing people. Write a blog or journal about your progress. Many people have been highly successful tweeting or posting their progress. Be careful here though, you lose your privacy, but it works for some people as an accountability tool.
Next, reward yourself along the way. Be sure these rewards are not unplanned distractions when you feel down. They should be part of your implementation plan. I will have girl’s night out – dinner, and a movie with popcorn after losing 10 pounds. Above all, love yourself. Tell yourself that you deserve to have this change in your life. When you lose your way, find your direction in your quiet. Find a peaceful, inspiring place to get quiet and lose all distractions. Meditate and feel the answers and motivation come back into your very being. You are worth it, and you can always, I mean always, find your direction if you get quiet enough and truly listen to your intuition. God is creating your miracle right this very minute.
Once you have identified your resolution, completed all the preparation and genuinely committed yourself to your resolution – CELEBRATE with a kick-off party on New Year’s Day. I have researched all of the fun, traditional New Year’s Day superstitious foods from around the world and I have come up with a really cool menu. Let’s do it together and then compare notes.
To bring our family prosperity, money, abundance, good luck, and all our wishes to come true, I chose smoked herring dip, pomegranate drinks and fruit with dip, for the appetizers.
In Europe, especially Scandinavian, eating herring had several attributes for the coming New Year. Herring have unpredictable migration patterns, therefore, having a successful catch was not always dependable. It was considered great prosperity (and lucky) when the year was successful and eating this fish on New Year’s Day symbolizes prosperity. The silver scales look like money and fish swim in schools which denotes abundance. I found this smoked herring dip recipe that I am going to make for an appetizer and serve with fancy crackers.
In Greece, a pomegranate is smashed at the front door after it is blessed at the morning’s church service. Considered the fruit of life, the tradition serves to represent strength, good fortune, fertility, eternity and as much joy as the number of seeds inside that fall out when smashed. Many people around the world today, chose to sip a pomegranate drink to symbolize this tradition rather than make a mess at their front door. Pomegranate margaritas are also a New Year’s Day favorite.
In many countries, fruit is a must on New Year’s Day. Some countries go with round fruits which are considered lucky. In the Philippines, 13 different rounded fruits are served on New Year’s Day. Sometimes the number is changed to 12 – one for each of the twelve months. The round shape symbolizes coins or money, but I really don’t get that. Money is not a ball shape, is it? I am going to serve some of these fruits in my recipes; others on a plate along with a yummy fruit dip recipe.
Serving grapes will be part of my fruit dish because, in Spain, they eat one grape for each of the 12 chimes of the clock at midnight. This sounds like a fun way to bring in the new year. As part of my toast, I will ask everyone to make a wish and eat a grape to symbolize this tradition. Dating back to the 1880s, the origin is believed to originate when the French middle-class immigrants came to Madrid. In France, grapes were expensive and only the upper class celebrated with grapes and champagne. When some of the French immigrants visited Puerta del Sol on New Year’s Eve to see the bells chime, they would eat the grapes copying the French upper class. With each chime of the clock, one grape was eaten, representing one of the 12 months in the year. Making a wish with each grape eaten, just sweetens the pot for the wishes to come true. What a feat! Pop in a grape, chew it quickly, make a wish, then swallow, all in one second only to repeat eleven more times without choking? You are one lucky dude if you can do that.
With this main course, my family is sure to experience prosperity, luck, good fortune, great progress, money, gold, a long life, resiliency, and peace.
Corned beef has been served on New Year’s Day, since the 1800s, for good fortune. Corned beef gets its name from the “corns” (large grain of salt) used to cure the meat. This food originated in Europe and the Middle East. Beef was an expensive luxury food so most people would use the curing technique on pork instead. When immigrants came to America, they realized how inexpensive beef was, and felt they hit the lucky jackpot. Try this tasty recipe pictured above.
Pork is also a common New Year’s Day tradition as pigs root forward with their snouts which symbolizes progress. Pork and beef are popular on New Year’s Day as these two animals do not scratch around in the dirt looking for their food. Eating chicken or turkey on New Year’s Day is a definite no-no as this means you will spend the year having to scratch around in the dirt for your survival.
Collard greens, cabbage, and green lentils represent money because of their green color. They just go hand-in-hand with a delicious southern New Year’s Day dinner of black-eyed peas, cornbread, cabbage, pork or corn beef.
Cornbread, carrots, and corn signifies gold and eating one of these gold yummies is sure to bring you some spending money in the new year.
Being from the south, black-eyed peas are a must to eat on New Year’s Day if you want loads of prosperity in the coming year. It is truly a hardcore tradition. Banks or other corporations will buy cans by the caseloads and give out to patrons. Some even send out people on foot to deliver a can to each door or porch. Good marketing if you ask me, especially with a nice “Good Luck” message on a label beside the company name and logo. The origin may be traced back to the civil war days. The most likely origin was the fact that African Americans were freed on New Year’s Day and black-eyed peas symbolize emancipation. They also symbolize humility which we all could use a giant dose of.
Many people believe that the Black-eyed pea tradition dates back to the civil war days when pork and black-eyed peas were a common food. Union soldiers would raid the Confederate soldier’s camps, eat their food except for pork and black-eyed peas, which they considered food for the animals. Confederate soldiers were grateful for this left-behind food and considered themselves lucky to have something to eat. Either way, this southern girl loves me black-eyed peas on New Year’s Day.
In Japan, eating noodles symbolize long life, the longer your noodle, the longer your life. And when the noodles are made with buckwheat, it represents resiliency. The tradition is to slurp up the noodle without breaking it because, well, that is just plain fun.
In the Greek tradition, ringed shaped foods like donuts or bagels represent coming full circle throughout the year. After much research, I found that this means that any struggles we are facing will resolve themselves and we will return to a place of peace. The Greeks place a coin in the ringed cake and whoever gets the piece with the gold coin, had good luck all year, (if they didn’t choke on it that is). I am making this yummy cake and it will count for 2 of my traditional 12 fruits to serve.
I wish each of you the most blessed and happy New Year. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org for your New Year’s resolution progress reports, questions, or just a word of encouragement on your journey to become a better version of the amazing you.
Economy, Peter. (January 1, 2019). 10 Top New Year’s Resolutions for Success and Happiness in 2019. Retrieved from https://www.inc.com/peter-economy/10-top-new-years-resolutions-for-success-happiness-in-2019.html
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Retrieved on December 29, 2019 from https://www.wideopeneats.com/the-lucky-southern-supper-traditions-on-new-years-day/Retrieved on December 29, 2019 from https://news.abs-cbn.com/lifestyle/12/30/14/12-lucky-fruits-ring-new-year