Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

In 2002, Resolutions Look beyond Self

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

In 2002, Resolutions Look beyond Self

Article excerpt

January is a month of transition and transformation.

Daffodils have elbowed out poinsettias in florist shops, each yellow bloom a tiny sun lighting up the barren landscape. Posters of white beaches and azure seas fill travel agency windows, teasing passersby with tantalizing alternatives to gray skies and slush. And pristine calendars adorn walls and desks, their blank pages promising new possibilities.

No wonder January is a month that inspires hope.

It also produces cliches. A fresh start. A new beginning. A clean slate. A blank sheet. The ubiquitous phrases float like snowflakes through the wintry air. Determined change-seekers vow that the coming year will be different, and better. As confirmation, they reach for paper and pens to turn good intentions into firm resolve.

New Year's resolutions can be serious or funny, depending on your perspective - the stuff of earnest longing or the object of David Letterman-Jay Leno ridicule. Resolutions also can be ethereal, melting like snow on the first mild January day.

Which raises a question: In a hurried world, do many people still pause to reflect on New Year's goals - the post-Christmas version of making a list and checking it twice?

For some would-be resolution-writers, the process is as awkwardly self-conscious and ultimately self-defeating as trying to keep a diary. For others, committing their fondest hopes to paper is the only way to make them a reality.

Thanks to technology, serious resolution-makers can now strengthen their resolve with help from a website called Resolutions Reminders ( Its 6,000 subscribers receive an e- mail message every month, gently nudging them toward their individual goals. Yes, yes, you can do it!

"It's meant to nag a little bit, and remind you that these were the things you wanted to be reminded of," says Troy Surratt, a Colorado web designer who created the four-year-old website. …

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