Sunday, January 1, 2012

Resolutions 2012

The resolutions list - the ultimate in annual list-making fun. What have I accomplished and what do I need to change to make myself over into a person I can respect? I love making resolutions. Last year I tried the whole healthy mindset - ease up on myself, not make the resolutions so I don't kick myself when I fail - and I still kicked myself when I failed with the resolutions I didn't make but really did in my head. I like writing them down for the whole world (or just my little corner of cyberspace) can see. It is a concrete way to take stock and see where I want to go. The resolutions haven't really changed over the past 14 years, but I am writing them down, anyway.

1. Health.
Of course, the health. I am an obese woman. I don't want to be an obese woman, but each time I've made a healthy change, I've quit before I've made any legitimate progress. I am well on my way toward my 40's, though, and my luck is not going to hold out forever - sooner or later I will start suffering some major health issues.
I find the "one small change at a time" method works best for me, so that is what I will do. I will begin with 4 small changes and add one a week. My 4 changes for this week are:

a. Drink my 8 glasses of water a day.
b. Go to bed by 11 each night.
c. Move each day. Period. Even if it's just a 10 minute walk, I will move each day. Once it's a habit
I'll add in rest days, but for now, I need to do it everyday to make it stick.
d. Write down everything I eat. No excuses on this one - I slack on it each time, and each time I fail.

2. Finances
Ugh. There is no reason for us to be in debt, and I'd like to get out before we have to start borrowing money to send the kids to college. And one goes in 3 1/2 years.

a. Start looking again in earnest for a full time job.
b. Sub more often. I was lazy last month.
c. Budget. Figure how much, exactly, is coming in and out of this house each month, and plan accordingly. Make lists for grocery and other shopping, and stick to them.

3. Personal life
Ok, obviously, my health is pretty personal, but this kind of covers those vague personality-based quirks I'd like to work on.

a. Be a better mom. I do ok, but I need to pay more attention, and add my kiddles into my health plan - cook better meals for them, make sure they're moving.
b. Be a better friend. This one deserves a post all its own. I have a trait that drives me crazy, but I haven't really changed it. I talk way too much, and I don't feel like I'm a good enough listener. On top of that, when I'm slightly uncomfortable or out of my element (essentially, I feel like I'm back in high school and I don't have any friends - which wasn't true then or now, but I have a touch of paranoia) I get louder and more talkative. It's annoying, and I spend hours later thinking about what a dork I was. Which, maybe, nobody even noticed, but I did. Anyway, at the church I've been attending, the minister recently spoke about leadership, and how being an effective leader means asking the right questions - the hard questions, the vague, open-ended, thought-provoking questions. It was a really great sermon, but what I really took from it was the questions issue. Because I tend to ask the basic stuff, listen to the answers, and compare it, aloud to my own life, which comes across as selfish. Which isn't really necessarily true, I truly care about what you think and feel, but I feel like an unintelligent dweeb if I'm not adding to the conversation. Ok, so my goals for this year are to ask the right questions, and to truly listen to the answers. My friend L is one of the most interesting, fun people I know, and she's actually really quiet. She asks intuitive, interesting questions, she listens and seems to care about your answers. I plan to emulate L. But I will never be quiet. I can't be quiet in my sleep.
c. whew, I didn't plan to go off on a tangent like that. Ok, next one. Learn something new each month. On purpose. Our library has some great classes, and so does our Extension Center. Plus, I can check out language learning stuff from the library - maybe brush up on my Spanish?
d. This one is fun: I'm challenging myself to read 60 books in the next year. I'm not sure if it's really a challenge, I may have read 60 books last year, but I'm going to list them here so you all can keep me honest.

Many goals, but all with concrete steps to take. I would like to point out that I did accomplish two goals I set for myself last year: I did become more involved in community service and I have begun to seriously explore my spirituality. I have been involved in my local Relay For Life (for the American Cancer Society) for a few years. The last few years I've felt the Relays have been less than stellar, so, rather than complaining about it, this year I joined the committee. Actually, I'm co-chairing the committee. I've also found a church that interests me, a Unitarian Universalist church where spiritual exploration is encouraged. I'm excited about these two new steps in my life.

Do you make resolutions? Do you think making resolutions can work? What are some of your resolutions this year? Please, share, we can all cheer each other on!