Do you do New Year’s Resolutions? I avoid them. In past years, my attempts at keeping a formal resolution have been abysmal failures. Maybe it’s because of the formality or announcing at the beginning of the year, “I resolve to…” It just seems so contrived. Who makes announcements about their plans? “Today, I will wash a load of towels!” I suppose announcing it might increase the likelihood of folks bringing their dirty towels to the laundry room, sparing me from having to round them all up myself. Probably not, though. “In 2012, I plan to eat healthier!” I can hear the groaning from the rest of the family already: “I still want my Oreo’s!” “Does that mean you are going to try to sneak pureed vegetables into everything again?”
A lot of the blogs I read regularly have featured posts on resolutions for the New Year recently. They range from very straightforward To-Do lists to philosophical attempts to frame the entire year around one word, like “inspire” or “breathe.” I have to wonder if these people spent their whole holiday season trying to come up with their resolutions. I was too busy with shopping, baking, wrapping, family peace-keeping, a birthday, a funeral, and traveling to put much thought into formalizing my goals for 2012. Now it’s mid-January, and I’m reading posts wondering how you’re all doing on your resolutions so far. Just call me Slacker already.
I could rattle off plenty of things I would like to accomplish this year. There are the home projects: painting, gardening, organizing, de-cluttering. I would love to figure out how to use my DSLR camera in a mode other than Auto. Cracking open the Rosetta Stone Italian program that’s been collecting dust for 2 years would be on the list. And let’s not forget exercising more and dropping 20 lbs., too.
Does publishing those things make me more likely to do them? Probably not. It’s more the opposite with me. A formal proclamation sort of makes me feel shackled. What if my priorities change? What if my circumstances change? I think I’m more of a planner and less of a goal-setter. I can make and execute a plan to do what needs to be done. It’s the long-term goals that I have trouble with.
Of course, that’s kind of a theme for me right now. I’m a woman of a certain age whose role is changing from full-time, homeschooling mom to… Well, that’s the question, isn’t it? Perhaps the best resolution for me would be to get more comfortable with the idea of setting goals. That’s not vague at all, is it?