Its that time of year again…the point in our lives where we tell ourselves that we will resolve to do better and make the New Year the official cut off date to stop doing worse.
What is it about the end of a calendar year that forces us to scramble to improve ourselves or at least tell (lie to) ourselves we will attain superior standards come 2 weeks from now?
Does the change of the 4th digit on the dates of our personal checks suddenly motivate us to hurry up and be a higher quality person?
Maybe it’s the smell of the freshly baked holiday cookies that seem to be in every store and office and oddly enough, even the public restrooms at the mall have the scent of Cinnabon infused through the vents – that waffles our senses into thinking we must EAT, DRINK and be MERRY throughout the holidays and start the healthier way of life after the ball has dropped and all the dust has settled, come the first of the year.
So, if you are like the rest of the country, and are writing out your goals for the new year just about now and
you, like myself, THINK you need to have a drop dead cut off date to begin something new, then listen up!…
New Years Shmew years! DO NOT WAIT until January 1st to start living your life long dreams of becoming a better you!!! Do not procrastinate and tell (lie to ) yourself that you will do good – after you’ve had your last hoorah of partying…..here’s why:
If you are like me you’ve had many new year resolutions in your lifetime. Perhaps you’ve resolved to get into better shape (cliche anyone?), or improve your eating habits
(I most certainly don’t need the New Year to tell myself that I need to improve mine – I beat myself up every morning after inhaling my kitchen the night before but that is not what this blog is about- it’s about what EVERY blog is about!!)….
Whatever your personal goals may be, now is the time when most of us resolve to improve.
For me, the holidays are a perfect match for my insane personality of self destructive behavior….as you all know by now, and I never cease to inform you, I can’t enjoy just one cookie i always end up eating the entire package then tell (lie to) myself that since I’ve already sabotaged my “good” day i may as well continue gorging myself until im so stuffed i have to roll myself into bed with my eyes popping out and tell myself as I curl up into a ball and die that I will start fresh tomorrow.
You see, every day is a New Years resolution for me in a new way or another. I always start the day resolving to improve. START being the key word. It’s only when I stop telling (lying to) myself that I actually DO see progress.
So what works you ask????
Personally, I try and improve myself a little bit each day. For instance, just this past Saturday, I bit my tongue and flashed my toothiest smile to the old lady at my Synagogue who yelled at me at the after services luncheon that I took HER seltzer bottle off the table that SHE walked all the way across the room to get. (Now mind you, I rarely attend synagogue to begin with, and I most certainly do not attend the luncheons on a regular basis so as far as I was concerned I was already performing an act of self improvement by even showing up….) so after said woman explained how the seltzer belonged to HER and not to be encroached upon by thirsty individuals such as myself, I went a step further on the self improvement front by actually volunteering to get her a NEW bottle of Seltzer from the other table (after which my good natured gesture proved futile as the old lady at THAT table leaped out of HER seat like Michael Jordan doing a slam dunk and jumped across the table to seize back HER Seltzer bottle from my hands-)
Can. Not. Make. This. Stuff. Up.
Well, I acted out yet ANOTHER level of self improvement by refraining from punching her out – even if I had a good reason to sock it to her- just the effort of holding back my immediate gut reaction of wanting to knock them BOTH out, instead I graciously volunteered to pour each of them a drink and I must say, this was all cause for rejoicing on my daily self improvement.
The reason I attempt to make EACH day count regarding personal development is that it seems less overbearing and more attainable than making a lofty goal once a year that is too overwhelming and frankly, generic and hackneyed to actually achieve.
For instance, if you want to get into better shape, start by just lifting slightly heavier weights at the gym during your normal routine workout. Or add another 15 minutes to your walk during your daily commute.
Simple small steps will help make your day to day life a lot more effective (and achievable!!) when striving to achieve your goals.
As for me, I DO write out my goals at the beginning of the Jewish New Year- just before the High Holidays. I find it’s less pressure than the Calendar New Year and since I’m not very religious minded i take the opportunity to reflect on my own goals and use the time to be more introspective….takes away from the guilt of not showing up on time to Temple. The Calendar New Year is more so a time for fun and frivolousness in my opinion.
Tomorrow Ill share some personal and some common New Years Resolutions …share some of yours!!!!!!