It's that time of year again. The resolution run-down wherein I review last year's public resolutions and describe how exactly I failed to achieve any of them! Despite the depressing nature of this exercise most years, I still want to thank Bexy for letting me copy this idea off of her. In some small way, it makes me feel like I'm having a conversation with an old self. So here are the 2006 resolutions with accompanying commentary in italics, stay tuned for the 2007 resolutions !
1. Give up caffeine. It's bad for you and talking about it makes you seem like a total dweeb. Tea... tea and skim milk steamers, that's all from now on. Made at home preferably. Which brings me to resolution 2...
Um, no. And for the second year running at that. But to be frank this is not a great resolution. I drink coffee about once a week, if that, and some moderate amounts of caffeine are actually healthy. So I'm not beating myself up over this.
2. Eat out less often. By less often I mean five times a week. Yeah, I know...still ridiculous. It's a waste of money and bad for your health. Make sure you have at least two, all-home-made meal days a week and try not to eat out more than once a day. Baby steps... Put money saved into a little box so you have a tangible appreciation of your savings at year end.
This was a minor success. Now that I don't work at the law firm, I'm usually home at lunch so that has helped but the impulse is still there so I need to continue to work on this. But definite progress has been made.
3. Get subscriptions to magazines you like to read and read *only* those magazines. I was going to say give up on magazines all together but, please... You can't just yank the needle out of the addict's arm. You should not be purchasing things like "Celebrity Living" magazine. Someone you know might see you.
I half-way succeeded. I got subscriptions to the magazines I like to read, but I do not read *only* those magazines. I have, however, succesfully implemented a no-fashion and/or women's general interest magazine policy (except for the ones I subscribe to, of course). They depress me and should be consumed in moderation.
4. Institute a four-day policy for phone calls. Return all phone calls within a four day period. Write down when somebody calls you on the calendar then make an effort to return the call instead of putting it off and putting it off because...because why exactly? Look into any possible deep underlying issues contributing to phone phobia.
Um, yes, but only because 4 days is such a stupidly long delay to return a phone call. But this is an unqualified success, je crois. Feel free to correct if I've left you hanging longer than that. Or don't. I could use the illusion (to quote Axl Rose)
5. Formulate reasonable career plan. Lawyer, as we found out the hard way this year, is too generic a career goal. You've got to be more precise and more passionate about you want out of your job and not just accept something because it pays well, is close to home etc... etc... Start looking for a job now and set clear goals about what you want.
I did make clear goals about what I want. I couldn't handle the law firm atmosphere and I don't want to work in one for the reasonably near future, but I like the law and want to stay there. And I did look for a job, although I chose to go to grad school because it helped me sort things out for myself. A success generally but definitely to be continued...
6. Complete a 10K race. A 10K is doable. I love that you can't cram for it. You have to put in the miles in order to achieve.
Well, not technically but I did complete two 5Ks, that counts right? No? Sigh...didn't think so.
7. Complete a sprint duathlon. I can complete the distances individually (that would be a 2K run, 20K bike and 5K run again). I just can't do them all at the same time (there's the rub). But I will be able to by May.
Um no no no. I never trained enough to complete the distances and I stopped caring. The shame of the year, resolutionally-speaking.
8. Give a percentage of your income to charity. Let's say 5%. This is really easy through automatic credit card deductions. Make sure to research chosen charitable organization(s) carefully, to make sure I'm not lining the pockets of some opportunistic con artists.
Yes ! During the portion of the year I had an income I gave 5% away through automatic United Way payroll deductions. No need to involve our good friend Mr. Visa in the whole situation, since knowing me, I would become the one person in the universe mired in credit card debt not due to the purchase of a plasma TV but because of a contribution to Greenpeace. Success ! Felt good and I hardly felt it !
9. Make one major change to my physical appearance. I saw this picture the other day that I thought was taken two years ago. Turns out it was from Grade 11 !!!! I have maintained the exact same appearance (except for weight fluctuations and ill-advised hair-dye schemes) for 10 years. Say it ain't so. Make sure that me on January 1st 2007 looks noticeably different from me on January 1st 2006 (but in a good way). I will add a picture here to make sure the difference is noticeable.
Okay, I never added a picture. But I did decide to grow my hair seriously. From January to December, it grew a few inches (there were some ill-advised trims in there) and the other day when I wore it straightened, a few people commented on it unbidden. I was so happy! Also, my skin has cleared up slightly according to some unbiased observers, although I've probably jinxed it by announcing it in this space. Still, I think I look different. So success!
10. Make a big leap. I see people all over taking giant leaps: going back to school, getting married, going abroad, quitting their jobs etc... etc...Inertia will grab hold and never let go if you let it. I know that come July 1st 2006, when articling ends, it will be hard for me to look at myself and see anything but "unemployed, single, living at home" but I am/will be so much more than that description so I will try to govern myself accordingly and act instead of lament.
I did go back to school and that was a big leap. But maybe not such a big leap. Doing what's comfortable and what's worked for me in the past instead of...Hmm... well... I am so much more than that description. Absolutely. And I am trying to transcend it, although not always successfully. We shall see what the future holds.