You vs Your New Year’s Resolution

GOODBYE 2020, HELLO 2021

Have your 2021 resolutions list ready yet?

It’s that time of year, readers! Time for us to come up with a set of ambitious — usually too ambitious — resolutions that we swear we’re going to stick to next year. 

But for some reason, though we try our best, most of us tend to lose our resolve after a month or two, and before we know it, it’s that time of year again and we’re making the exact same resolutions we did last year.

Your brain reacts to positivity

A new study has uncovered one simple way you can actually get your new year’s resolutions to stick this year. The secret lies in how we phrase our resolutions — pledging to start doing something is much more effective than vowing to stop doing something. 

For example, instead of saying “I want to stop eating so much junk food”, you could try “I want to start eating healthier” — of course, you should also be specific in your resolutions and be realistic about the time needed to adapt to them. It’s unlikely that you’ll be able to quit junk food cold turkey, so maybe cut it down to one snack a day, then 3 times a week, and so on.

Give yourself a break

If you’re still finding it hard to stick to your new year’s resolutions, it’s completely fine to cut yourself some slack and remember that everyone faces setbacks at some point or other. In fact, given the toll 2020 took on everyone, this psychologist actually suggests not making any resolutions for 2021 at all. Whatever you decide, the most important thing we can probably do next year is to be kind to ourselves (as cheesy as that sounds).


5 Singaporean stories to catch up on

1️⃣  Time to call up those 3 other friends: Social gatherings are now allowed for up to 8 people!

2️⃣  Fret not! Even with the new strains of the coronavirus from imported cases, experts say our current measures are sufficient in preventing its spread.

3️⃣  We’re in this one! Associate Professor, Jeremy Lim, the director of global health at the National University of Singapore’s Saw Swee Hock School of Public Health talks about the pros and cons of online doctor reviews.

4️⃣ The time has come! Singapore’s COVID-19 vaccinations have begun, with healthcare workers set to begin receiving the first doses here today.

5️⃣ A story for your grandkids: The National Museum and National Library Board are putting together nearly 4,000 photos that will show future generations what it was like here in Singapore during the COVID-19 pandemic.

And 5 facts to spice up your life:

1️⃣  Respect your elders! The United Nations has announced that 2021-2030 will be the Decade of Healthy Aging.

2️⃣  Constant vigilance: As the world looks forward to the end of COVID-19, the World Health Organization warns that we must be prepared for the next pandemic.

3️⃣ Three’s a crowd: Earlier this year, a man in Brazil surprised his doctors when scan results showed that he had 3 kidneys.

4️⃣ That’s nuts! Apparently, most types of nuts aren’t nuts at all.

5️⃣ Not another one: A second coronavirus variant has been discovered in South Africa.

2020: A REVIEW

COVID-19’s mental health toll

It’s been a heck of a year, hasn’t it? From bushfires in Australia to the storm of protests that took over the US, and of course, the threat of the COVID-19 pandemic looming over us all — there’s no doubt that 2020 has not been very kind to the world. 

If you’re still in doubt of the toll the coronavirus has taken on people’s mental wellbeing, the UK’s leading psychiatrist has even stated that it poses the greatest threat to mental health in the UK since the second world war.

When work invades the home

In Singapore, a poll showed that over 70% of Singaporeans felt more stressed out following the implementation of work from home practices. Increased workloads and an unclear distinction between working and resting hours meant that many of us became increasingly anxious or depressed. Similar responses have been reported globally, with lockdowns keeping everyone stuck (but safe) at home.

Looking on the bright side

With all the troubles we’ve had this year, it’s easy to forget that some good things happened as well. One random example of this was a concert played for an opera house full of houseplants in Barcelona (the houseplants were then donated to healthcare workers in the city). 

Crayola also reached peak diversity by releasing its Colours of the World crayon set, which included 24 new skin tones for young artists everywhere to use in their drawings. And everyone found newfound ways to stay connected during the pandemic, whether that be through Zoom hangouts or even drive-by parties.

Sure, these may not sound like much — but it’s the little things that got us through the year and reminded us that life wasn’t all bad, even though it may have seemed like it most of the time.


Weird & Wonderful

  1. We’ve all kicked a pregnant woman (at least from the inside).
  2. We’ve advanced farther in medical care for mice than we have for humans.
  3. A charcuterie board is the older, alcoholic sibling of a lunchable.
  4. Morning strolls have been replaced by morning scrolls.
  5. A criminal could carry around a koala to tamper fingerprints and hide their tracks.

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On the road back to normal

Pictured above are the youths of Wuhan, China enjoying a night in the club earlier this month, with hardly any masks in sight. It’s not an uncommon occurrence these days in the city where the coronavirus first emerged last year.

Wuhan has not had a new case of COVID-19 since May and lots of younger people have gotten involved in the city’s nightlife and other social activities since their lockdown was lifted in April this year. The older citizens of Wuhan are also enjoying their freedom by hanging out with friends without restrictions or even dancing in the park.

It’s also a big hoorah for us Singaporeans, as we get to have 8 people in our gatherings, as opposed to 5 — which would definitely make for a more exciting late Secret Santa exchange. Unfortunately, many other countries are still unable to relate.

Even in Wuhan, there are still some scars left behind by the pandemic that continues to rage in many parts of the world today. Many businesses are still struggling to cope with the economic impact of the spread of COVID-19, and while efforts are being made to revive tourism, it’s going to be a while before Wuhan really sees a return to normality on a larger scale.

While Wuhan is generally thought to be the original epicentre of the coronavirus pandemic, more research still needs to be done to find out whether that’s really where it all started. Next year, the World Health Organization is set to send a team of investigators to China to further explore the origins of the virus, and residents of Wuhan are hopeful that evidence will be found that the virus originated elsewhere.


Vanessa is a go-getter and knowledge-seeker with way too many hobbies. On weekends, she can be found enjoying a lie-in and pretending she doesn't have anything else she should be doing.