3 Reasons why people celebrate the new year's day

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

The psychology of new year's day celebration

Why do most people celebrate the new year's day?
What's so special about that day that make people happy?
Ever wondered why people who had a bad year celebrate the new year's day?

Apart from the fact that some people celebrate Christmas on the 31st of December still this doesn't explain why almost everyone participates in the celebrations of the new year.

So many people use fireworks and shinny decorations to celebrate the end of a year and the beginning of a new one. So what is that all about? And why do we think of that day differently even though its just another day in the calender?

1- Hope and wishful thinking

Hope can end depression and make pain more bearable. We humans get quickly attached to anything or any activity that can provide us with hope. People celebrate the end of a year because they want to have hope that the next year will be better.

After all if someone has been through some bad events then he will psychologically want to believe that the next year will be much better. This is also why so many people write new year resolutions. It's the psychological state of hope that motivates so many people to aim high for the next year. (see also How to keep New Year’s resolutions)

2- Marking the end of a bad phase of life

Most people think of the new year as a new phase of their lives and this is why many of them believe that the end of a year can mark the end of their pain. From a psychological point of view people see the new year as a new start that is totally separate from the last phase they lived. They want to believe that whatever bad events that happened in the past year is less likely to happen in the new year. (see also How beliefs create your reality)

You might have also noticed that the celebrations are usually more intense on the end of a bad year. In such a case people celebrate the end of a bad phase of their lives and try to reassure themselves that it won't be repeated.

3- Survival

One of the core psychological needs of human beings is survival. A typical human would do anything to stay alive in a life threatening situation. Because the arrival of a new year is a new checkpoint for a human he unconsciously feels happy because he survived another year.

This is also one of the reasons people like to celebrate their birthdays. Of course there are so many reasons that motivate people to celebrate their birthdays but one of them is unconsciously celebrating the fact that they didn't die on the previous year.

Is it a good thing to think this way?

yes. After all if you can convince yourself that the future is going to be better than the past then certainly your psychological state will improve a great deal and you will be capable of facing the new life challenges.

In my book, The ultimate guide to getting over depression i explained how the best way to end depression is to provide yourself with hope. Whether you get it by believing that the new year will be a better one or by doing anything else you will be much more capable of fighting depression and bad emotions. In the end i just want to wish you a great new year :)

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