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Tuesday, January 03, 2006

New Year's Resolutions

New year - new you!

"New Year's Resolutions" is definitely a western term for me. What do you want to change or improve upon the New Year? Change jobs, better dieting, or learn Mandarin?

In China, traditionally New Year alone isn't the most critical point to make changes. The season spring is. Here I try to compare the differences.

Point one: Time span is different when it comes to making decisions.
Western: New Year's Resolutions
Chinese: A year's plan is made in spring.

Point two: When it's the end of it.
Western: And every year, many people discover that January's best-laid plans are easily broken by March. "People have really great intentions, and then ... resolutions start to become less important," says's Ms. Miller.
Chinese: Since spring is the season to make plans, if by Summer you haven't got anywhere, you know your year plan isn't working any more.

But maybe this time is different. You made plan and you carry on and you achieve it. So by the next New Year, you will be very satisfied with yourself.

I can't say other things like better dieting, exercises (I am still gaining weight after four years work out.), but if you want to set a plan on learning Mandarin, here's a achievable plan:

If the only thing you can say is hello and thank you now, by next New Year you can easily have a nice little talk with Chinese people by finishing Intro Level A and B. No need to do more than that.