Question Of The Day

We Asked People: What’s One Thing You Promise to Do in 2020?

“Adopt two more dogs.”
new year 2020 fireworks

New Year’s Eve always feels like a season-ender to a good show. And whether the episode you’re starring in is set in a loud countdown party or an intimate get-together at home, it will, most likely, still end with you taking stock of the year that has passed and making resolutions for 2020.

Whatever the reason may be, the start of a new year brings out something that leaves us all yearning for new beginnings. Resolutions can be as trivial as cutting down on sugar, or crucial as trying a new career path. For example, next year, I want to focus on gaining stability as I approach my late 20s. This applies to all aspects of my life like finances, mental health, and relationships.


I find that as I surround myself with people who are driven, I too become more determined to achieve my goals. So, in order to motivate myself and others on the internet, we asked VICE readers: What's one thing you promise to do next year?

Sukjun, 26

VICE: What's one thing you promise to do next year?

Sukjun: Move out of my parent’s house.

VICE: Why is that?

Sukjun: I’m trying to move out of my parents’ house so that I will be happier and my parents will be happier. Nothing wrong with any of us; it’s just that in Korea, different age groups live in such different worlds and communities, with different morals and values. We have all grown to be very different people. When put together in a shared living space, collisions are bound to happen and we get hurt.

Plus, from a financial standpoint, moving out of the house is a mission of its own in Korea. Huge “key money” or deposits commonly costing around $10,000 are paid to the landlord. Korea also has its unique method of renting a place called “Jeonsé,” which is to give the landlord a huge sum like $100,000 in one go (instead of monthly rent). Most people borrow money from the bank and pay interest monthly.

Culturally, Koreans stay with their parents until they get married, but nowadays, it’s more common for people to move out earlier.

new year fireworks

Photo by Chris Gilbert on Unsplash

Darlyn, 31

VICE: What's one thing you promise to do next year?

Darlyn: Start a side hustle.

VICE: Why would you like to start a side hustle?


Darlyn: I was laid-off back in September. I took a bunch of online classes, workshops, networking events, and panel discussions trying to stay sharp until I land the next job, and eventually realised that there's no such thing as job security today.

I put my head down in my previous job but titles and your nine to five isn't everything. You are your business and an employer is just one of your clients for what should be diversified streams of income. That's the true security I'm striving for now. The side hustle dream I’m working on now is a brand that will inspire women of colour to move past imposter syndrome and brave into their careers.

Shree, 20

VICE: What's one thing you promise to do next year?

Shree: Adopt two more dogs.

VICE: That’s great. Why?

Shree: I had six puppies and two of them passed away. Plus, I can't think of something greater than doing that. I personally think it’s way better than making the same promises about changing yourself and all. To clarify, we don't have a shelter. It’s just our simple home where we give them food and a place to sleep, and they're free to roam around.

Justine, 18

VICE: What do you promise to do in the coming year?

Justine: Find a job, work my body up, and be better at making art.

VICE: Why do you want to focus on those things?

Justine: I’m getting out of my comfort zone and I’m trying something new that will maybe lessen my shyness towards people.

new year 2020

Photo by Josh Boot on Unsplash.

Natasya, 22

VICE: What do you promise to do in the coming year?

Natasya: Take better care of my mental health and seize the opportunities that come my way instead of worrying about what could go wrong.

VICE: Why is that?

Natasya: Well, I haven't really taken good care of my mental health this year. Every time I felt anxious or whenever I had troubled thoughts, instead of dealing with it, I pushed it aside and told myself I'll deal with it later. Which, of course, I didn't do. As life went on and got busier, more problems emerged and I pushed them all aside, telling myself each time that I'll deal with it later.

Eventually, I couldn't push all those unresolved feelings aside anymore and the dam broke. I had a breakdown, which wasn't great. But luckily, I had a great group of friends who were so loving and supportive and didn't judge me. They listened to me and helped me figure out and sort through my unresolved emotions, feelings, and thoughts.

I also want to seize more opportunities this year because previously, whenever a great opportunity came up, I would not accept it out of fear that something would go terribly wrong — that it was not the right moment for me. Eventually, I realised that you are only given one life (literally YOLO) and it's up to you to give it your best shot. After all, it's better to have tried it and succeeded or failed, than not try it at all and be left wondering “What if?” forever.

This interview has been edited for length and clarity.

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