At the dawn of the New Year, resolutions are traditionally made. In Japan, darumas represent resolutions, and are given to one’s self or others, any day of the year. The word daruma, derived from the Sanskrit word "dharma," originally referred to Bodhidharma, the founder of the Zen sect of Buddhism. In recent historical times, the term came to be used for dolls in the shape of the founder performing zazen meditation. From the head down, the dolls are painted as if though were wearing a robe. The zazen posture is one with the legs folded under the body, and the meditation involves clearing the mind of distracting thoughts to achieve a mental state totally free from trouble in an attempt to recognize the truth by mental concentration. 

Today, daruma means a small doll made from papier mache. These are thought to bring exceptionally good luck, since they always returns to their original position, even if knocked over. People think that if they face a difficult situation, whatever hardships they endure, as symbolized by the doll that always returns to its original position, they will bounce back from. Dolls are acquired at various stages during one's life, or when facing some kind of challenge. Dolls are sold without the eyes painted in. The custom is to make a resolution and paint in the left eye of the daruma. If the challenge is successful, the right eye is then also painted.
Give one to yourself in the New Year, or whenever, and take joy in shading in the right eye when the insular ambition is met.
~Ashley Simpson