Thursday, December 30, 2010

Think About the New Year

new year haiku
resolutions broken
are not real resolutions
to begin with

I'm not big on New Year's resolutions. I used to make the same resolution year after year, but it wouldn't have made any difference if I hadn't. As an introspective person anyway, I'm regularly looking at myself and my life and seeing what changes I need to make to be the person I want to be. Whenever I see a need for a change, I take the necessary steps to make the adjustment in my life; I resolve to do something differently. I don't need a new year to do this. 

Many people think that resolutions are the same as goals. I know it's just a matter of semantics, but, according to Merriam-Webster, [one definition of] a resolution is "a formal expression of...will or intent...." A goal is "the end toward which effort is directed." Retailers use this holiday as a chance to promote fitness and health-related books and items. But, let's face it: if you don't already have an intention of eating healthy and keeping fit and well, you're not going to start just because it's January 1st. However, if you have a goal of losing 5 pounds by February 1st, you know (or you learn) the steps you need to take in order to make that happen. 

If you're going to resolve to do something, just do it--any time of year. You don't need a new year to start fresh. Setting goals for the new year seems more realistic. Goals are specific--you know exactly what you are working for, and you know when you've reached a goal. 

New Year's has always been my least favorite holiday. The New Year's Eve celebration is often exciting and fun, but then you wake up to a gray, cold, and quiet new year. The world sleeps. It's always been a depressing day for me. When I was little, New Year's Day meant that Christmas vacation was almost over and I'd have to go back to school. When I was a little older, it meant that my siblings would be going back to college or wherever they lived at the time, if they had come home at all. I would wonder why the momentum of festivity couldn't keep going for a few more days. Some people take down their Christmas decor on New Year's Day (or before!), even though Christmas isn't even over (not until January 6th). The celebrating isn't supposed to end just because we hang up a different calendar. 

So, here's a resolution for the new year: let's keep celebrating!

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