on new year’s resolutions

no new years resolutions

image credit: newyorker.com

I have a confession: I’m terrible at new year’s resolutions.

Seriously. Terrible.

See, I like to swear that I’m going to do impossible things. Things like rid myself of debt, run ten miles every day, end world hunger, never be late, write a post on my blog every day . . . (It’s January 3. This is my first post. Whoops!)

But it’s more than that that, too. I’m bad at resolutions because they seem pointless—at least when they’re based around a calendar.

Take my running resolution, for example. What happens if I break my leg? Am I going to give up running until 2014 because I’m out for a few months—doctor’s orders? Or what if my friend is in an accident and taken to the hospital in critical condition? Will I say, “Hang in there, sweetheart! Haven’t gone for my run yet. Be there soon!”?

Of course not!

Then what is the point of resolutions, again?

But that’s not all.

I get a little bit—how should I say it?—annoyed? with all this talk about “reflecting on the past year” and finding ways we can improve. “This year I’m going to . . .”

Seriously? Is it just me, or is that a bunch of people-pleasing crap? The holidays are one of the busiest times of the year. I hardly think most people find it the ideal time to sit around and contemplate life.

For what it’s worth, a bucket list seems about the only reasonable thing to me to create for a new year. A bucket list is a set of goals to be checked off, but not things that have to be done every day or week or month. For a perfectionist like me, bucket lists are far more practical than resolutions—for how can I predict the unknown?

In the end, though. I guess what it comes down to is living life the best we can each and every day. We have dreams and goals. Why should we need January 1 to make them happen? If I miss a day of running? I’ll pick myself up and run again. Every day is a chance to start anew.

At least it should be.

15 thoughts

  1. Spot on Jessica!
    N.Y Resolutions are to make us feel guilty for not meeting them. And yes, it is impossible to meet them.

    Have you seen Total Recall, the latest with Farrell?
    there is a point he says all he wants is to remember and Jessica’s father gives short speech about the past and the present.

    For me that is the main point of the film. “should you look into the past to act at the present” and moreover, “do you need to know your past, in order to know who you are (- that i would love to hear your thoughts about in a future post)

    My warm wishes for a happy and creative 2013

    • Hey! So sorry for the delayed response. I haven’t seen “Total Recall,” but it sounds like I should! I absolutely think we should look to the past to act in the present. Isn’t that what learning is all about? I also definitely feel that our pasts help shape who we are. Some of us have pasts we want to escape or deny. Jean Valjean from Les Misérables is a good example of this. However, just because we have a past that has helped to make us who we are doesn’t mean that we have to be defined by that past… As I said in this post, every day is a chance to start anew.

      Thanks for the well wishes. Happy New Year to you, too! (And you can be looking for a post or two along those lines before long). ;)

    • That’s awesome! I’m glad you had a great year last year. I always seem to have ups and downs, and there are always things I know I should be working on. But yeah, forget unrealistic goals. For me it’s about trying to make the most out of each day. Thanks for following my blog, by the way. You’ve got some great stuff on yours, too!

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