Tuesday, December 31, 2013

new year's resolutions

flask, i hear you say, how can i make better and more effective new year's resolutions and be a better person? what do you recommend?

well, never fear. 

i am here to help.

my advice to you is don't make any.

do not start your new year off by making a list of ways you're not living up to your goals and do not give yourself a whole list of self-improvement projects to start and then feel bad about when you backslide.

if you really wanted to take off those extra twenty pounds or exercise more often or read more, you'd have already started the process.

and if you're going to try to do something hard like quit smoking or change careers or clean up your debt problem, you probably want to take your time with that and make plans and maybe have a fallback position and allow for some gradual changes with your big leap.

you don't need the extra stress of an artificially imposed culturally encouraged deadline-of-shame and its accompanying failure cycle.

sure, i've put on a few pounds in the last month or so, but i'm not going to get all bent out of shape about it. i understand that the combination of dark days and weird weather and assorted stresses and injuries have contributed to a changed exercise pattern and quite frankly i'd prefer to start doing something about it as soon as i notice i'm not progressing in the direction i'd like but also there's the reality that if i don't take it easy and eat well and get a lot of rest this cold that i'm just barely fighting off is going to catch up with me and that will suck worse than carrying those extra pounds a little longer.

getting in shape (insert any personal transformation) is on ongoing process. it's something you do because you're ready and you want to and you leave yourself some room for resting and even backsliding because it's not going to help you to impose artificial timelines on it just because you happened to have been given a new calendar.

i've only ever made one new year's resolution that i've stuck to, and it has been gloriously simple and effective: one year i decided not to make any new year's resolutions anymore, and now when people ask (as they will) how you're doing at keeping this year's resolutions, i'm that smug hatwipe who says i've kept all of mine for years.

you should try it.

it's awesome.

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