It was pretty likely that crazy was out in full force last night. Full moon, and a blue moon to boot, partial lunar eclipse, end of the year, end of the decade and one more successful step in the morphing of Ryan Seacrest into Dick Clark. Wow.
I, like everyone else, contemplated resolutions for the new year, personal failings to address, goal to achieve. But I’m stumped.
This in no way means I’m 100% happy with myself, or that I don’t have goals I wish to accomplish. Here’s a brief list, lest you think me arrogant or self-important.
- Lose the rest of the baby weight, and the extra 10 I packed before I got pregnant
- Organize the hurricane aftermath I call home.
- Find a new job
- Quit smoking. Again.
- Make more time to write
- Find a publisher for my children’s book, “One Good Wish.”
- Finish editing the paranormal novel
And this is just a few. There are countless thing I need or want to do. They are just too precious, so I’m afraid to call them “resolutions.”
It’s the failure rate.
With press estimates for resolution failures in the ball park of 90%, it seems that tacking the term “resolution” to a goal is tantamount to sticking a genius child in a special needs class. Sure, he may be a genius, but how successful will he be if he spends his days making macaroni pictures and taking bean bag time outs?
It’s like a national Check Yourself holiday. Don’t get too big for your britches, as my grandmother would say.
Think you can go from a chaotic, chronically late mess to an uber organized Blackberry driven success? Better check yourself. Especially since I’m pretty sure organization is genetic.
Got the will to completely change your eating habits and break a sweat at least 3 times a week? Better be sure, because the gym membership is a contract.
Going to reel in your spending, create financial security for the future — or at least get the bills paid on time? Probably should have thought of that before you maxed out the credit cards on Christmas, or held off on the mortgage payment in exchange for that Wii.
A few years ago my husband and I were talking about this, and Dan decided that he would only make resolutions he knew he could keep, thus eliminating the feeling of failure that settled in in February.
That year he resolved not to lead a herd of lemmings over a cliff, not to start a Blank Panther rally (we’re white) and not to invest our money in ponzi schemes (we don’t have any).
And when his coworkers started bemoaning the auto debit at the gyms they no longer went to, and the wasted money spent on salad fixins, he got to smile and say, “I’ve kept my resolutions.”
So instead of feeling like a failure, my husband was just amused by his own private joke that February.
But I would like some sense of motivation to ring in the New Year. New beginnings and all that. But making resolutions seems akin to relegating my dreams to the garbage pile, so what to do?
So I got it. My one, lone resolution. I’m going to keep trying.
That’s it. I know I can keep it, because it’s not in my nature to give anything up completely. And it’s something I do every day.
Every day I try to write. I’m not always successful, but I try.
I try to watch what I eat. This doesn’t mean I don’t periodically dive head first into a pint of Ben and Jerry’s Coffee Heath Bar Crunch, but it does mean that once I come up for air, I’ll try again instead of buying a second pint.
I try to get to the gym 5 days a week. Sometimes I fail, but I’ve been trying hard enough since October that the membership is worth it. And when the lunchtime population there dwindles come February, I’ll get to say I’m five months in and still trying.
So this year, I resolve to try.
Which always brings me to Yoda and the Force. Damn it. “Do or do not, there is no try.”
That always pisses me off. Of course there’s try. If you don’t try there is no do.
Try is will plus effort.
Without either of these things, nothing gets done. Of course, even if you apply both of these to any given situation, you can still fail, but it’s also the only way to succeed
By trying, you open a path for success.
So this year I’m going to keep trying. I will fail, but I will also succeed. If I succeed in anything that I try, I will be happy, and if I fail, I will merely try again.
So there it is — how to be successful in your resolutions. Don’t resolve to do, resolve to try. Your bound to succeed at something, and as long as you try, you will be upholding your resolution, which is a success in and of itself. You can’t fail.
Good luck and Happy New Year!