Tuesday January 8, 2013
Taking a step forward in the New Year
By NOR AZARUDDIN HUSNI BIN HJ NURUDDIN
A key element in a New Year’s resolution that sets it apart from other resolutions is that it is made in anticipation of a new beginning.
THE Prime Minister has urged Malaysians to work with the Government and each other to realise a better future.
In his New Year’s message posted on his Facebook wall, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak says: “The future success is not a mere dream but within reach if all parties are willing to plan carefully and work hard to achieve it”.
He said 2012 witnessed the end of the first phase of the transformation initiative involving the Government sector, economics and politics. The transformation initiative had shown very positive effects.
For 2013, to build sustainable success, he said: “We need to take notice and the lessons of past experience. We need to continue with what is good and has proven to be successful and improve with all the weaknesses repaired.
“While what is proven to fail should be terminated and be exemplary thereof.
“To continue efforts and to ensure that the national vision of Malaysia as a high-income developed country will be achieved, we need to build on the foundation that has been laid through the National Transformation Policy.”
For 2013, “we need to build a national agenda for strengthening national unity that is the core philosophy of survival of the country, based on the 1Malaysia, People First, Perfor-mance Now”.
Second, continue to improve the well-being of the social safety net system in which every citizen who needs help will get it, where welfare payments and subsidies are targeted to the truly needy and reinforced by a network of family welfare institutions, corporate and religious.
Third, increase the wealth of the nation by ensuring sustainable economic growth, fiscal health and boost social movement rooted in hope, in which individual achievement is limited only by the imagination, their entrepreneurship and the extent to which the individual willingness to work hard, where creativity, innovation and willingness to take risks will bring lucrative gains.
Fourth, ensure Malaysia would be the best place to build a life. The best place to have a family and raise children, a country that has a caring society, a strong family system, neighbourhood and street safe from crime, environmental sustainability, schools and educational institutions as well as the quality of the best and capable health care systems.
He said the Government would not be able to serve Malaysians effectively without solid backing and support from the people.
“Give us a clear mandate and we promise to use the faith entrusted towards building the best Malaysia for all.
“The future of the country and of the children is too important to be staked or to be used as an experiment. Building a successful country requires continuous effort and clear direction.”
Basically, A New Year’s resolution is a commitment that a person or a leader makes to achieve one or more goals in projecting and reforming.
A key element to a resolution that sets it apart from other resolutions is that it is made in anticipation of the New Year and new beginning.
By committing themselves to a New Year’s resolution, they generally plan to do so for the whole following year.
However, a study by Richard Wisemen of the University of Bristol involving 3,000 people showed that 14% of those who set New Year’s resolutions failed, despite the fact that 52% of the study’s participants were confident of success at the beginning.
Men achieved their goal 22% more often when they engage in goal setting, (a system where small measurable goals are being set; such as, a pound a week, instead of saying “lose weight”), while women succeeded 10% more when they make their goals public and get support from their friends.
Quoting Frank Ra (author of the New Year’s resolution book A course in happiness): “Resolutions are more sustainable when shared, both in terms of with whom you share the benefits of your resolution, and with whom you share the path of maintaining your resolution.
“Peer-support makes a difference in success rate with new year’s resolutions.”
Where did the concept of New Year’s resolutions come from? According to history, it is believed that New Year’s resolutions came from the Babylonians around 4,000 years ago.
From the Islamic point of view, the Hijri New Year is the day that marks the beginning of a new Islamic calendar year and is the day on which the year count is incremented.
The new year’s day of Hijrah reminds Muslims of the Hijrah (migration) of Prophet Muhammad from Mecca to Madinah in the year 622 C.E.
It is well-known that the Hijrah did not take place on the first day of Muharram, it probably occurred in the month of Rabi’ul Awwal (third month).
Also the Hijri calendar was instituted some time in the reign of Caliph ‘Umar (634-644 C.E.).
Islamic year begins with sacrifice (hijrah of Muslims, of Prophets) and ends with sacrifice (hajj, hijrah of Hajra, hijrah of Ummah to Mecca).
Not from someone’s birthday, or some king or ruler’s orders, but from the foundation of the Islamic community, on brotherhood and unity we begin and end.
We should be grateful to those who tried very hard to build a successful country.
The peace and harmony that we enjoy today is the result of their efforts. The collapse of a country can be caused by a traitor or traitors.