December 17, 2014
HOW many times have you made a New Year’s resolution? And how many times have you actually stuck to it?
A new initiative called Promise or Pay is motivating Australians to stick to their resolutions, by asking them to donate money to charity if they break their promise.
Research shows that only 8 per cent of those who make resolutions in the new year will actually stick to them. But if money is on the line, that figure increases to 72 per cent.
Here’s how Promise or Pay works:
1. Make a promise or a New Year’s resolution (ie quit smoking, exercise more, etc).
2. Pick a charity and promise to donate money if you break your promise.
3. Tell your friends and family and get them to donate money to your chosen charity.
Catie Blacker, from South Australia, has pledged to quit social media for two weeks. She’s halfway through and hasn’t looked at Facebook, Twitter or Tumblr for seven days.
“At the moment I’m on my lunch break outside enjoying the sunshine,” Ms Blacker told news.com.au.
“I’m usually constantly on my phone. I was a little addicted. The first thing I did in the morning was check Facebook, I was on Twitter and Tumblr on the train. It’s so easy to get sucked into it all.”
If she breaks her promise, Ms Blacker has chosen to donate $100 to Suicide Prevention Australia.
“My mother committed suicide when I was young and I’ve experienced the effects of that my whole life,” said Ms Blacker, who has battled with mental illness herself.
After the two-week period ends, the 20-year-old says she plans to scale back her social media use.
“We spend every day staring into a screen and while you’re supposed to be actually talking to people. I might curb [my social media use] to only on my lunch break or at certain times of the day or when I’m not with other people,” she said.
Sophia Day is committing to swim 10km over the summer in a series of ocean swims.
“I’ve been doing ocean swims for a while now and I saw this as a bit of a challenge and an opportunity to make myself accountable for my goals. Many people set resolutions but within a week they’ve wavered.
“I’ve been training for about two months now and I’ve already completed two swims which were around 2.4km each.”
Ms Day, who has until the end of March to reach her goal, has pledged to donate $100 to NASA, an Aboriginal organisation helping young kids around Australia.
“I want my charity to end up with some money. So I’ve got my sister supporting me (she’ll donate around $50) so even if I do achieve my goal that charity will still get some money. It’s a win-win situation.”