I don’t do New Year’s resolutions.
Not really, anyway. I mean, sure, I set goals in January, but those aren’t really resolutions, are they? Most of them are just to get me through the week. I can’t handle worrying about an entire year.
The most common resolutions seem to be about health – everyone wants to quit smoking or lose weight or eat healthier or exercise more. I don’t smoke, and sure, I’d like to lose a few pounds. In fact, I resolve pretty regularly to eat healthier and exercise more: “I’ve been eating too much junk lately, including this burger and fries I’m eating right now. Starting Monday, I’m going to eat better.”
“I’ll bet I could drop a couple of pounds in a month if I started getting up early and exercising. Of course, to really track how much I lose in a month, I should wait until the first to start.”
If I make the same resolution Jan. 1 that I made on Oct. 1 – or last Monday – does it still count as a New Year’s resolution?
I’m also apt to make vague resolutions without a real action plan, like “relax more” or “don’t get so stressed.”
How will I accomplish those goals? Well, if I knew that, I’d be doing it already and I wouldn’t have to make a resolution about it.
While I understand the natural urge to make resolutions around the new year – fresh calendar, clean start, great starting point – it’s unfortunate the new year starts in January. Around here, that means it’s cold.
If there was ever a time a human being was less inclined to break out of comfortable routines and stretch themselves, I don’t know when it might be. I don’t know about you, but when it’s below zero outside, the food I’m craving is not a crisp, cool salad.
Getting organized is another popular goal. Not to brag, but I’m already pretty well-organized. I like everything to have its place and to have some useful function (and yes, looking pretty is a function). If we’re not using it and we’re not going to use it and it’s just sitting there, let’s let it go.
My mother tried tapping into my natural organizational skills when she asked me to help her sort and organize boxes of photos to go into albums. I had no problem tossing photos that were too blurry or out of focus to tell what was in them (oh, the days of film photography) or that were things like landscapes we didn’t recognize or pictures at the zoo. (That giraffe looked really cool at the time, didn’t it? You had to be there.)
After a couple of days, she started calling me “the ruthless one.” She hasn’t asked me to help since.
Many of the really well-adjusted, goal-accomplishing people I know will tell you that there’s no magic to New Year’s Day. You should always be stretching yourself, setting goals and working at accomplishing them. Once you’ve accomplished one, set a new one, and don’t let the calendar dictate when you will start.
“A year from now,” a local sage once told me, “you’ll wish you had started today.”
Yep. You’re probably right. Every day is the right day to break a bad habit or start on the road to health or get more organized.
Man, it looks cold out there. Maybe I’ll have some cocoa and take a nap first.
Who am I kidding?
Here’s wishing you the best of luck in the new year, and may you accomplish all your goals. Happy New Year.
Enjoy your MidWeek.