Are you one of those people who sets New Year resolutions? I know a lot of people who tell me, “I don’t do that. Why set myself up to fail?” I know, I know. We make them every January 1st and most years we let them fall by the wayside. Then, when it doesn’t work out, we blame the whole resolution custom. I know this because I’ve been there. Done that. Worn the T-shirt. Worn that T-shirt out.
But here’s my question. Is it the custom’s fault? Or is it us?
Doesn’t that question make you feel all itchy inside? I mean, who wants to take the blame when we can just shift it away. We blame it on the whacky tradition of setting those resolutions. It’s not our fault. It’s a stupid tradition, and we should just stop believing in it like we stopped believing in Santa and the red-nosed reindeer. (Although, I do still believe in Santa just a little bit.)
Anyway, this line of thought got me thinking about the whole goal-setting process. And yes, I do see New Year’s resolutions as goals. And I’m a big goal-setting fanatic. Seriously, I didn’t finish a book, sell a book, and hit some major publishing lists without setting and achieving goals. And the process of goal setting isn’t algebra. It’s rather simple. We want something, we map out a plan of requirements/steps/tasks that we must do to accomplish said goal. Simple, right? So why the heck are my resolutions this year almost identical to the ones I made last year? Can you guess which ones they are?
Oh, heck, I’ll just say it. For some reason any goals that involve controlling what yummy stuff goes into my mouth or what yucky stuff I do called exercise are nearly impossible to achieve. Not that I’ve been totally bad about the exercise. I’ve managed to keep a good walking routine. At least four days a week I walk for about an hour. But guess what I learned? I have other muscles in this body other than those I use to walk. So here I am again this New Year, thinking about what I need to do to get in better shape and setting a new list of resolutions.
And why am I doing this again when realistically I’ve already proven I might fail? Well, I gave it some thought and realized, I’m not a realist. I’m an optimist. Besides, for me to say I don’t believe in resolutions is like saying that I don’t believe that I can accomplish something. That I’m going to stop pushing myself to be better.
And I’m a pusher by nature.
So I decided to join the YMCA gym with a neighbor. We’re going together two times a week, so hopefully I’ll stick to this resolution and work out those muscles I forgot I had. But, there is more to this story that I’ll tell in a future blog. And, in the meantime, I’ve also got my other neighbor, friend, writing buddy, and partner in crime – Susan. She joins me on those treks through our neighborhood and has been a big reason I’ve kept up on my walking goal last year.
Now for my other goals:
1. Controlling yummy stuff - I'm thinking of trying to talk a friend into going to Weight Watchers with me.
2. Try to stay on top of book deadlines - focus on getting more pages done daily.
3. Balance work with play - make more plans to do short vacation trips. Use the trips as a dangling carrot. i.e. If you get two chapters done this week, you can go to New Orleans for the weekend.
4. Read more and watch less television.
We’ll see how I do this year. Okay…so there you have it. My resolutions. Anyone want to share their resolutions and how you plan to meet those goals?
Happy New Year!