It’s that time of year again.
It’s time to take inventory of all we have accomplished, both good and bad. The opportune time to make a fresh start, to begin anew. This is the time of year to resolve to do something that will improve our lives.
Why? Because THAT DAY has happened! That magical day – when, POOF! Everything can change. We can begin again with a clean slate. We can envision all the wonderful changes we could make in our lives. And because THAT DAY has happened, we MUST make a list, and absolutely we MUST write it all down. Because if you don’t write it down, it doesn’t mean as much. Otherwise, your commitment to those changes don’t seem to be so, so… resolute.
Or maybe it’s just another day. Because let’s face it, you can do all of that on any other day of the year, too.
I used to make a lot of lists; daily, weekly and monthly “to do” lists, grocery lists, school assignment lists, that four-page typed single-spaced list of home improvement projects with goal completion dates within the year 2009 (yeah, we’re still working on it).
Lists are great tools to help organize your thoughts. The kinetic activity of writing it down often helps with memory. It often solidifies inspiritation to complete the intended transcribed goals, giving higher chances of success for some people… who are usually nothing like me.
The problem with my lists of goals is that I have rarely completed them, especially within the allotted time I gave myself. I would write down every idea that came into my head, and then accomplish only a few of them. Daily goals were quite lofty, and by the end of the day I would transfer most of the list to the next day. When I tired of writing the same unmet goals day after day after day, I would finally decide that these things must not really be that important, then crumple and chuck the whole list in frustration. Benjamin Franklin, well known for his personal goal lists, would be incrediblly disappointed.
Please tell me I’m not the only one who does this???
Then there is the never-ending joke about the grocery lists I make. They never seem to make it to the store with me. Without fail, I will write down the food I think our family needs, and then find myself at the store entrance, fumbling through my purse and pockets, never to find the list that is still sitting on the kitchen table, or on the counter, or on the clothes washer, or on the floor of the garage with a shoe print in size 6 wide.
Can you believe this is coming from the same person who has accounted for nearly every penny coming in and out of her life since 1987?
Okay, so lists don’t appear to work very well for me, and by now you’ve probably surmised that New Years resolutions are a no-go, too. I’m not alone, though. Apparently, resolutions made at the new year are only successfully achieved 8% of the time.
Maybe the reason that many of us are so poor about achieving our New Years resolutions is because it’s only one day out of the year. Maybe our resolutions are so lofty that we would never attempt to achieve them on any other day. I mean, they sound like good ideas at the time, but when tomorrow comes around…
Funny thing, though, is that I tend to bring home nearly everything that has been written on my grocery list anyway. It doesn’t matter that it is still laying on the garage floor. Since I have written it down, I seem to remember better, the important items that I have written on the list that is so far, far away. I tend to come home, check the list that is still setting on the kitchen counter, and sigh with relief because the important things are already there in my canvas grocery bags; no real need to go back on a second trip. Whew!
If you feel like you must, go ahead and write down those goals and resolutions. It doesn’t hurt anything, and it might actually help. You didn’t have to write them down for January 1st, either. There are at least 364 other days in the year where you can transcribe your dreams for something better. You could write them down on a different day, like.. say, May 23rd, September 26th, or even January 3rd.
But when the inevitable time comes that you discover you have lost your list, don’t fret. What was important to you will stay fresh in your mind. Those will be your real goals, your priorities. Those are the goals your soul is asking you to do, and are what you are more likely to successfully achieve.
Each day that you wake up, you are given the gift of opportunity to make a new resolution. Life happens, so goals change. But you will always remember what is most important for you to seek to achieve.