Thursday, January 02, 2014

Higher resolutions

I don't often make public resolutions for the new year. For one thing, I'm still a little fuzzy on why we celebrate New Year's Day in the first place. (As a child, I kept asking my mom, "But why? Is it somebody's birthday? Did something important happen?" and my mom kept responding, "Well, because it's a new year." I just didn't get it. We didn't stay up late to set off fireworks or bang pots and pans at the start of every month or every week, so what made every year special?) For another, I've seen far too many resolutions -- my own and others' -- made in all solemnity at the beginning of the month and broken well before Martin Luther King Day. These days I tend to agree with Orson Scott Card on the matter: "If you're serious about change, you will be realistic about what it takes to achieve the goal, and you will immediately start to do what it takes. Nothing will stop you." So you don't have to wait for New Year's Day, and you don't have to express it as a passing thought or as a wish, as many resolutions are. You determine a specific, realizable goal, plan out how you're going to get there, then state it publicly so that the people you love can hold you to it. Then you proceed with the plan.

So I've been mulling over some possible resolutions for this year. I've ruled out anything that requires someone else's contribution to accomplish (such as "get a book accepted by a publisher"), as well as any goals that will probably take more than a year to complete (such as "lose all the excess fat"). I'm trying to focus on strengthening two of my weak areas, with one bonus goal to improve my strengths. Here's what I've sussed out:
  1. Become a better disciple of Jesus Christ
    1. Practice being more aware of and kinder to the people around me
    2. Consistently ask myself what Christ would have me do in this situation
    3. Focus on fixing my own weaknesses, not other people's
  2. Keep my blood sugars tightly controlled (90-120 range) through diet and exercise
    1. To that end, visit the local YMCA at least once a week
    2. Develop and stick to a varied, low-carb diet
    3. Check my post-prandial blood sugars consistently to make sure I'm hitting targets
  3. Improve my writing
    1. Write at least once a week
    2. Attend at least one writers' workshop to work on skill and tone
And that's about it. These three goals focus on areas that I think need the most improvement, and they're achievable; if I added more goals or ramped up the difficulty, I'd be more likely to quit them.

So now I've put them out there. If you see me cheating, feel free to whack me upside the head!


MarieC said...

Nice goals! They are specific and realistic. I am a firm believer in making goals public knowledge for the added layer of accountability that it adds. Good luck to you! :-)

Soozcat said...

Thank you! I think you're right about accountability. Plus if you've ever had an itching to whack me upside the head, this is the year to make your dream come true! ;)