I gave up writing New Years’ resolutions years ago. Did you? Or do you still, as the old year parties itself out, struggle to put your hopes and dreams into some kind of list which will magically transform you into that person you always wanted to be?
Once you’ve seen the ball drop, watched the old man cavort in diapers, or wiped that slobbery party kiss off a few times, rethinking the whole holiday becomes paramount. Here are a few of the things I’ve done to keep the new year fresh and fruitful.
I never actually make a list of resolutions. Rather than think of the weight I’d like to lose or the invitation I’d like to receive from the prime minister of Canada or the Queen of England, I think of less specific and more attainable goals.
I don’t write them in a list because if I do that list will haunt my days (and nights) for much of the year to come.
Although in the past I have used my own 12 point programs to effect changes in my life with a fair amount of success, these days, I change my focus. Rather than think of what I don’t like about myself or my inabilities, I think of what I have accomplished. And I keep a list of kudos and joys that have come my way.
These things are for the times I forget where I’m going or why.
A hand-made story book written by one of my students about her appreciation of me as her teacher.
A card from my sister’s in-laws, in their nineties, congratulating me on my “first but not the last book”.
A natural garnet stone from a dear friend because she was wishing me success with my books.
A necklace from my daughter whose oak tree image means potential for greatness, given to me as I struggled the last few steps to publication.
Countless cards and jewelry pieces from the man who is the best gift I ever received.
Appreciative comments from readers which I’ve collected into a list.
The sound of my far-away granddaughter’s voice when she picks up the phone to talk to me and her drawings on my frig.
All of these things and more are there for me to touch for strength. They make my New Years’ hopes shine as they relate to what I’ve done and accomplished.
Just for the record, here are my writing plans at present: research and write the rough draft of The Loyalist Legacy, book three in the Loyalist trilogy, push on with marketing the trilogy via new methods (more to come on those), and make every day count not just in writing but in living my life. These things will make me happy. What are your happiness-inducing plans? And when the year winds down will you have a basket full of mementos of a successful year? I sincerely hope so.