Resolutions, Schmesolutions!

Happy New Years Day, everyone!

Let me say right away that I don’t believe in New Year’s resolutions; I believe in daily resolutions. When you think about it, each day is a start of a new year. The pressure to make resolutions that begin at *sparrow fart on January 1st is ridiculous. The second you slip up on January 1, 2, 3, etc., it’s too easy to say, ‘well, I blew that one, didn’t I? Oh well, I’ll try again next January 1st.’

So how about this: why don’t we set ourselves some reasonable resolutions with steps we can easily follow? Some suggestions that start small can end with big results:

  • If your resolution is to lose weight, do your homework. Decide on the how of it. Whatever method you choose, set yourself up for success. Set up mini goals you can accomplish one week at a time. Keep track of your progress, and remember that slow and steady does it. If you slip up, well; welcome to the human race. Pick yourself up, and resume. Keep your goal in mind, but make your progress doable.
  • If your resolution is to be a nicer person, decide the things you want to be nice about. Make a plan of how you want to be a nicer person, and start small. It doesn’t mean that you will turn into a saint overnight; it only means that you have a plan in place to become a nicer person. Remember this: where attention goes, energy follows. If you pay attention to those triggers that set you off and make you a not-so-nice person, then be aware of them. Say that people who don’t use their directional signals drive you nuts. The next time you drive behind someone who does this, say or think, ‘I’m not going to let this get to me, and I am NOT going to waste my life getting upset.’ It won’t change their behavior, but it will change yours.
  • If your resolution is to save more money, start small. You may not see next New Year’s Day with a million dollars stashed away, but consider putting aside $5 or $10 or $20 a week or a month at a time. Keep track, and resist the temptation to dip into your cash stash when you want to go out for pizza. As the old Scottish aphorism states: “Many a mickle makes a muckle.” (Translation: a penny, a nickel, a dime add up over time.)

You see where I’m going with this, right? There’s no need to become a resolution Nazi each January 1st. Just have a plan in place and go small and steady.

As for all the past mistakes and regrets of 2014? Personally I’m going to take a leaf from wonderful blogger Pam Kirst (read her at http://pamkirstblog.wordpress.com/) from her post, “How to Have a Truly Loolie New Year.” In it, she mentions a great tradition for a New Year’s gathering of family and friends: ask everyone to write down anything that happened in the past year that they would like to forget or wish never happened. All the lists go into a designated box, and then everyone goes outside. The ‘regrets and forgets’ of the past year box gets doused with lighter fluid, a match is thrown on it, and everyone watches as all the bad parts of the old year burn.

What a fabulous idea! Just the sight of all those bad memories going up in smoke sounds like a great catharsis! I think that the Crankee Yankee and I will start that tradition ourselves. Thanks, Pam!

May we all enjoy the best year of our lives so far in 2015!

*British euphemism for ‘break of day.’

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