I really love Resolution Time. I love new beginnings, lists, and (usually) self-improvement. Awhile back, I read that you should never make a resolution that you don't want to keep or that punishes you in some way. As in, I Will Not Eat Chocolate For An Entire Year. (I know someone who, shockingly, made this resolution, and even more shockingly, kept it.) There's really no point because, well, why would you do that to yourself, and also because you are setting yourself up for failure (except in the case of my ultra-disciplined friend). And we all know the feeling of failure to keep a promise leaves you feeling worse than if you never made that promise in the first place and you just went on being your selfish, sloth-like self.
So. My resolutions are not of the punishment variety this year. Some are personal and I don't intend to share them here or anywhere, but some I want to put in writing because I think it will greatly improve my chances. Here are a few:
1. I am going to spend more time outdoors this year. We have a home with lots of patios and outdoor living areas, yet, over the past year, I spent so little time outdoors it is embarrassing. (It had a lot to do with having an infant for most of the first year we lived in this house, but now she walks and I am finally emerging from that post-partum fog. I hope. Again, fingers crossed.) So, I plan to take the kids outside more, read on the deck during their naps (god willing) and have coffee in the morning on our balcony off the bedroom. Also, on nice days, I want to eat outside.
2. This is the Year of Mindful Consumption. This means, unless we need it or I absolutely love it, I don't buy it. No buying something because it's a good deal or because it may come in handy *someday*. We have edited down our possessions a lot over the years (thanks exclusively to my minimalist husband) and I can say I now know the zen that comes from clutter-free closets and an organized home where you can easily and quickly get to everything you need. That does not mean I have not slipped up. As evidenced by, ahem, my own personal closet. But that is changing this year and I know it is going to give me great peace of mind.
3. Get My Clothes Tailored to Fit Me Perfectly. I have so many clothes in my closet that I don't wear because I wish it tucked in a little here or was a little longer there. And so they just sit there untouched. I used to work with this woman who didn't spend very much money on clothes, but she everything in her closet tailored and she always, always looked dynamite. I am going to think of this as a form of shopping for new clothes. Imagine all the new outfit possibilities once I actually want to wear all these clothes hanging in the back of my closet!
4. Be a Better Friend. Having two children 3 and under changes a lot of one's priorities. I really want to spend more time with friends this year, keep in better touch and just be there for them. This isn't easy when I feel like my whole day is spent being pulled and tugged at by two little munchkins who NEED NEED NEED, but I am going to make a concerted effort in this regard.
5. Spend Ten Minutes Each Day One on One With Each Kid. Yes, I am around C-Man and Baby J all day long, but it's easy to let the whole day go by without being fully engaged with them -- in their worlds. No cooking, cleaning, computer, other child to distract. So, if C-Man wants to play dinosaurs, I will. And if Baby J wants to roll around on the floor and climb on me, I'll let her. I hear this goes a long way toward satisfying their needs for attention. Plus it will help keep me in the moment. (Something I work on every year, so I'm not even adding that to the list.)
I have also been thinking a lot about this whole Word of the Year concept that I first read about over at The Misadventures of Kelly and Kelly. If you are intrigued, go here and here. As for me, the word "ACCEPTANCE" has emerged as something that would be very good for me to focus on in 2009. There really is no point to banging one's head against the wall over situations that cannot be changed. There is just too much else to do.