I like the New Year. I think it’s good for our brains and our culture to hit the reset button and make a fresh start.
We all know the drill. Every magazine cover will promise that “This is Your Year!” and “New Year, New You!” and “This Will be the Best Year of your Life!”.
Target will set out all of its drawer organizers and baskets and we will buy all of it. We will buy a blender for smoothies and a new workout video. We will get gym memberships and purchase black yoga pants that promise to “make you look 3 sizes smaller!” We will buy self help books, stick a nicotine patch to our arm, stock Lean Cuisine in our freezers, and join Weight Watchers.
We promise ourselves that we will spend less money (right after we buy those black yoga pants and the blender); we will spend more time with people we love and vow to be more patient with them. This is the year we will write that book, ask for the raise, become a better Dad, get out of debt, mop the floor, eat more salad, start recycling, bike to work, volunteer, stop procrastinating, go to bed earlier, watch less tv, build up our savings account, get the junk drawer organized, and jump out of an airplane. AND WE WILL DOWNLOAD APPS FOR ALL THESE THINGS!!!
Of course, we will start all those things right after we get over our fear of failure, inability to handle conflict, somehow have better/non-complaining kids and develop an endless reservoir of patience, win the lottery, buy a mop, start liking lettuce, begin sorting papers, purchase a bike, create a 26 hour day, develop a different personality type, cancel our Netflix account, spend painful hours sorting through stuff to take to Goodwill while our children cry tears about parting with the puzzles they have never played with (and accusing you of being the worst parent on earth), and jump out of an airplane.
Obviously, most resolutions just don’t work out.
The reality is that we get overwhelmed by all the change/sacrifice/discipline and our brain freaks out. And by March we are all back to deep-frying our Snickers bars, chain smoking and watching a Netflix marathon in our home which is filled with stuff we don’t need, use or like to clean.
This my friends, is all of us.
So this year, rather than being overwhelmed with Big Goals, I’m going to think about today.
– Can I give my kiddo a prepackaged fruit snack after school rather than prepping an organic/locally sourced/made from scratch whole grain kale quinoa biscuit that I worked on all day that they’ll inevitably hate & I’ll resent them for?
– Can I write a blog post today without being anxious that people hate my writing & style?
– Can I stop what I’m doing to read a book to my kids today?
(Even if they are being needy and whiny?)
– Can I grocery shop on a full stomach and make reasonable decisions about what kind of food I eat today?
– Can I host someone new for dinner even if I HAVEN’T CHOSEN THE TRIM PAINT FOR MY HOUSE AND IT STILL LOOKS LIKE A DEPRESSING, SAD PLACE, CAT LADY HOUSE FROM THE CURB?[gulp.] Yes.
– Can I just finish all the laundry in one day without creating piles all over the house of Things to Fold/Things that are Almost Folded/Things that Need to be Sorted/Things to Put Away?
Not a chance! Ha!
– Can I look for one opportunity to help someone out today?
Yes, as long as I like them and it doesn’t take too much time and as long as it’s not hard or inconvenient. So that’s kinda like a yes. I’ll work on that one.
So there’s my resolution today. It’s honest and I can actually do most of it without having a nervous breakdown or developing a different personality type.
It’s going to be a good year.