Resources to help you stick with New Year's resolutions

How many of you are going to make New Year's resolutions? Are you able to keep them for more than a few weeks? If you do, that's great.

The notion of making New Year's resolutions began with the ancient Roman god Janus. He was the god of new beginnings. He is a two-faced god, with one face looking in reflection to the past and the other face looking to the future. The Romans would make resolutions as an offering of a new beginning at the start of each year. In the beginning, their resolutions had a mostly "moral" theme: generally, to be good to others.

Our modern-day resolutions are a little different from ancient traditions. The most popular resolutions center around losing weight, exercising more and quitting smoking or another bad habit. Finance and debt management and spending more time with family are popular as well.

The library can support you with some of your resolutions.

  1. Get organized. We have books on organizing your home, your garden, your closets, your finances (just to name a few) from expert organizers. Several library branches will have programs on these subjects in the new year.
  2. Help others. You could become a volunteer, share your expertise with others, or join the Friends of the Library Groups (all branches have one) and help support your library.
  3. Learn something new. Is there something specific you would like to learn? Want to learn how to crochet, rug hook, play bridge, cut hair, shag dance or speak another language? These and many other new things to learn can be found in our books and databases, or through attending activities sponsored by the library.
  4. Enjoy life more. Read a current biography of someone who has overcome tragedy and learned how to be thankful for life's small presents. Join one of our book clubs or come to one of our many programs. Become a "regular" at your library. Ask some of your friends to come along. Connect with people.
  5. Lose weight. Our libraries have much information in books, magazines and DVDs on exercise, healthy living, cooking and more.
  6. Quit_________. Is there some little habit you would like to quit? Smoking, nail biting, cursing? We have a great selection of self help books written by experts that encourage you to stay strong on your decisions to change.

While you are at the library and tossing out a bad habit, why not enjoy a new habit like discovering all the services our libraries offer. Ask about our databases, e-books, or how to set up your library account so you can access our catalog from home. Pick up our new newsletter with all our upcoming programs listed. The USA.gov website has a great listing of New Year resolutions and related government resources to help you meet your goals.

The library is the perfect place to find information to help you start off 2014 on the right foot.

Mary Jo Berkes is branch manager of the Hilton Head Island library.

Original story at the Island Packet

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