Thursday, January 3, 2013

"Happy New Year! SET SOME GOALS!!"

Dear 2013,

I'm glad you got here (yay for not dying in the Mayan apocalypse that was never going to happen anyway!), but… Are resolutions really necessary? It just feels like a lot of pressure. And I think I've had enough of feeling pressured to finish a certain thing in a certain amount of time for quite awhile. (Grad school was more than enough pressure for me, thanks!)

I mean, I've already got some goals. My ultimate goal for a while now has been to finish 50 books in one year, but I've failed at that pretty spectacularly over the past couple years thanks to being in school - so I'm being kind and just setting myself a goal of 35 books for this year.

Okay, so that is just one goal.

I do definitely want to move into my own apartment. Aha! A resolution: get own apartment! (Fingers crossed I can get that one checked off before the end of January. I will be a goal-reaching machine! Or at least get to feel like a total resolution champ.)

I think I'm pretty okay fitness-wise. I work out regularly, and I've been doing really well at that for the past several years. I don't see that situation changing for any reason, so I can't do the "normal" resolution to be more active. I refuse on principle to resolve to lose weight (because I think that puts the focus on the wrong aspect of health) (and only in very small part because I don't want to have to buy a new wardrobe if my clothes get too big). I suppose I could resolve to "eat healthier" than I do… but I'm flat-out unwilling to give up baked goods, I see no reason to give up gluten when I'm not allergic to it (it's a pet-peeve of mine anyway that people who aren't even sensitive to it suddenly think that gluten is the devil and they have to give it up for no medical reason), and I love dairy and meat too much to really give those up either (vegetarianism just wouldn't work well for me, and veganism is right out). So those stereotypical resolutions don't really fit.

I would like to get more crafting done. But again, I don't want to put more pressure on myself than I feel is necessary, and achieving my one resolution should help in that department anyway since it'll be easier for me to access all my supplies and tools all the time.

I really, really want a dog of my own. But I am responsible enough not to get one before I have my own place (since my parents dog is the absolute sweetest with people but is often fearful of (and thus aggressive toward) other dogs), and even after I have my own place I'll need to take some time to establish what sort of routines I'll have there and decide if I actually have the time and energy (not to mention money!) to devote to a dog. So I'm not going to resolve to get a dog, when that might turn out to be a bad idea for me and the absolute worst idea for the dog. (How adult of me to know my limits!)

So my New Year's resolution/goal list looks like this:
  • RESOLUTION: get own apartment
  • GOAL: read 35 books (although 50 would be supreme)
  • GOAL: do more crafting (so unquantifiable! Which is exactly how they tell you NOT to set goals. Oh, well.)

I have thought of two more possible goals: Visit friends in DC, and visit friends in Boston. Both of these are things I would love to do this year, and I have tentative plans forming already. But, as with the dog goal, life could have other opportunities and obstacles that could preclude either or both of these visits. If the trips happen, they'll be amazing. If I end up not being able to go, it will be disappointing, but not the end of the world. (I feel so gosh-darned adult, taking time to actually consider the implications of my goals and how I'll feel about not reaching them!)

Do I fail at New Year's if I've only got one real resolution? I hope not!




(I'm awesome.)

I should resolve that, at the beginning of every month, I will evaluate my current resolutions/goals, as well as contemplating whether there are additional resolutions/goals I could add to the list, either for the month or the rest of the year. (Do I think I could make lunch plans with several old friends? Could I try something to help manage my shyness? Should I do something really brave every week?) Two resolutions ain't too shabby!

I guess, overall, I can just be satisfied with the fact that 2012 was a pretty good year - certainly better than 2011 was for me - with plenty of ups to offset the downs, and then do my best to make 2013 better!

Cheers to you, 2013! Let's make this a good one!

Yours with hope,

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