I choose not to except for one simple resolution and you will shortly see why there is only one resolution for me to make.
In years past, I have typically not made resolutions, but I have set goals. Writing goals — finish two novels, write a script, get something published. Running goals — run a couple of of half marathons and break two hours. Life goals — do this and do that and go here and go there. And, generally almost none of those goals are every accomplished in any real sense.
I have also lived the vast majority of my life always thinking and planning about tomorrow. As I have written before, when I was a young child, my father warned me a number of times to stop wishing my life away. The reality is that I haven’t stopped doing that.
And isn’t that what resolutions and goals are … they are about tomorrow instead of today. They are about looking forward instead of being about today. There’s nothing wrong with looking forward and establishing goals certainly makes sense. But after living a life of doing that and arriving where I am today, it’s time for a change.
This is a lot of what I’ve been thinking about and doing over the last couple of months since I celebrated one of those birthdays with a zero at the end of the number. I’ve never cared about how old I am. I don’t think those zero years are any more significant than the others. But, there was something about hitting that number and looking at how dissatisfied I was with so many facets of my life that made me realize I had to re-consider just about everything.
In those two months, I have found a couple of new friends who have undertaken significant efforts to help me realign my thinking and my approach. Words cannot describe how much I appreciate these two new friends. One who has become an almost daily email pen pal and the other who I have nicknamed my Positivity Guru for her never-ending ability to find the positive in things.
So, now after two months of thinking, a lifetime of living for the future rather than today, and a new year upon us, I resolve this simple thing: to not live such a goal-oriented life and to live as much possible in today rather than tomorrow.
I will write when I want to, not because I have to. (I realized that I have forced myself into a corner with my writing where it feels more like work and less like something I enjoy. The solution to this is to eliminate the goals and need to write or complete my stories. The solution is to write because I want to.)
I will run when I want to, not because I have to. (I have no goals for my running this year. I don’t care about my time, my distance, or anything else. Other than being able to run when I want to.)
I will meditate when I want to, not because I have to. (I have made a serious effort to give this a try over the past two months thanks to my Positivity Guru. When I have a successful meditation session, I feel soooooo much better than I did before.)
I will, well, engage in more “want tos” that relate to today, and fewer “have tos” that relate to tomorrow and next week and next month.
This morning I woke up and decided to go for a run. The run wasn’t very successful, but as I made my way back home, I realized I wanted to see the movie Wild. So, I went. Here’s hoping there will be more of that in my year ahead and less stress and annoyance and unhappiness.
My Positivity Guru has impressed upon me the importance of having an affirmation when meditating. The reality is that the affirmation is something that can come in handy any time of the day. My Positivity Guru reminds me to breathe throughout the day, particularly in moments of stress. She has a point. It is something I find myself doing more and more. My affirmation and breathing and calming myself.
I am here
I am now
I am present
I am peace
I am love
Happy 2015 to all of you.