I tend not to make New Year's Resolutions. I find the practice redundant. I'm always looking for ways to improve myself, as well as making lists of one kind or another, but the start of a New Year is a good time to review the resolutions I am currently working on and either change them, renew them, or discard them. Here's a few of my works in progress.
Diet - Rather than subscribing to a diet or getting on a bandwagon only to fall off, I've been working on making incremental changes, which are generally easier and more lasting than drastic sudden short-term changes. Increasing fiber, eating more fruits and vegetables, not skipping breakfast, drinking more water, and planning ahead so I don't fall into the "quick emergency meal" trap are all going remarkably well. I haven't lost a ton of weight yet, but it's trending in the right direction.
Smoking - I quit smoking three years ago, in the middle of a divorce, which flabbergasted most people, but if anger is one of your major triggers, and you decide to stop being angry anymore, it's easier than it sounds. Lately, however, i've picked up a few packs of clove cigarettes, and that is just a road to nowhere - I have to dump those.
Saving - Now that I'm eligible for my employers 401k, I have to get signed up for that and get all my finances finally in single female order. It's on the list!
Filing and organization - I've made great strides on this this past year and a major dive into it yesterday. I still have handouts from undergrad courses I took in the 1980s. Those have GOT to go! I can't tell you how many boxes of photocopied (and mimeographed!) handouts I've recycled this past year. I still have two boxes of professional articles to go through - but there's no WAY I need to keep all of them. The culling and thinning continues.
Exercise - empty promises so far, I need to start with walking, but as the snow piles up, I tell myself that spring is coming soon. It has helped to take the camera along - but that doesn't lead to walking, it leads to frequent stopping.
Social - I've made a lot of progress rebuilding my social networks. I went to my college reunion this past May (dateless!) and sent out nearly a full Christmas card list this season. I'm getting out more and traveling more - including Italy last spring - and being around people is getting much less painful. I'm even starting to entertain again, althought I don't quite have my confidence back yet. I'm working on that!
Kindness - I'm constantly striving to stave off cynicism and retain my sense of humor. I firmly believe that what goes around, comes around, and that if you give off hate and negativity, that's what you receive in turn. If, on the other hand, you give off kindness and courtesy and acceptance, that is what you will receive back. The ripple effect spreads this energy around in bigger and bigger circles. So, in stressful times like these it's even more important to give a smile, a nod, a wink to folks with whom you interact every day. Ask about people's families, give folks the benefit of the doubt. Yes, it may mean I get taken for a ride now and again, but I'd rather get fooled once in a while than to shut out openness and miss all that which makes human interaction so special. I tell myself when I get taken that it's just proof that I'm not completely jaded yet. It's so reassuring.
Happy New Year and good luck with your own resolutions!