They sound so finite and firm. Resolutions — to be “resolute” in commitments to do something.
The new year is a logical time to take stock in ourselves. Unfortunately, while we mentally might have the desire to be resolute in making changes in our lives — the power of another “R” word — routine — often tends to get in the way of our resolutions.
We say to ourselves, this is the year we’re going to eat healthier, work out, lose weight, get a better job, spend more time together as a family, read more books, take a pottery class, go gluten-free, give up chocolate, or whatever it is we promise ourselves — sometimes every year.
Some years we are successful in achieving these lofty personal goals, but often the routine reverts back to our life of the year before.
We can’t follow through on those specific self-promises and resolutions we made at the beginning of the year. And we get mad at ourselves.
So let’s start the new year blame free. Let’s take a moment to breathe and wipe the slate clean with a new but easier, and just as important and fulfilling, set of resolutions to break up our routines.
One thing we can all do without much effort at all is ease up on our social media use. There is obviously much more to life than what pops up on little or big screens — and if there isn’t, that is definitely a resolution we need to make. Many of us are addicted to a 24-hour feed of technology, as are our children. We need to make a resolution to switch it off for an hour — a day — maybe even a weekend or a week.
If you want to do something for the common good, how about making a quick donation to one of the nonprofit groups in town. Many of them strive to improve the quality of life in Wilton, and they do so quietly, without much fanfare.
Another resolution you can strive to keep is resolving not to rush to judgment. Resolve to try to understand where someone else is coming from, to understand the path they have taken that we have not.
Let’s resolve to assume the best in each other and hope that all of us have the most positive motivations — while maintaining an inquisitive mind.
Something that will take but a little of your time and energy is to call parents and relatives who live far away just to tell them you are thinking about them. Check in on that senior citizen down the road to see if he or she is OK.
Say “I love you” every day to your spouse and children. Every day. No exceptions. Ever. While New Year’s resolutions come and go, this is one positive thing that is easy for everyone to do throughout the year.
Oh yeah, and you don’t have to totally give up chocolate.