New Year’s. Again.

newyearsI was once told that everyone should make a New Year’s Resolution, as it is the one time in life that you can tell an outright lie to yourself and everyone around you and no one will think anything of it. I tend to do them every year and one of them always has to do with writing.

I didn’t need further proof that this is common – go to a New Years party with a bunch of writers and you’ll see just how common it is – so when fellow Altered Fluidian Eugene Myers sent around this “The Washington Post” article last month by Ann Patchett, and her realizations of how making yourself write every day actually resulted in writing every day and having higher output, it wasn’t a new concept for me. (I have to admit, though, that the first time I read the article, all I could think was “wow, this woman knows Edgar Meyer!)

In the article a yogi is credited with saying that if one picks a task and does it with consistency for the first 32 days of the year, then that sets the tone for the year. I agree with that, but I don’t think you have to limit it to the first 32 days of the year. Doing something every day is simple programming of the human body and mind. You can teach yourself to write every day by simply sitting down and writing every day. You can teach yourself a musical instrument by practicing every day. Professional football, basketball and other sports players practice every day. And even if you’re not that good at first, and maybe you don’t care for the task, you can still program yourself to do it. For proof of the latter, read about Andre Agassi and how his father decided Andre would be the best tennis player in the world and it became so. Also look at how many people, if they really thought about it, would admit to despising their 9-5 job, but they’ve programmed themselves to do it through repetition of the task and the telling themselves it has to be.

So, while I don’t think New Year’s Resolutions are incantations that guarantee success or failure, I’ll still make a few:

1. I will have Indian food at least twice a month. This one is easy!

2. Writing. I’ll write every day. Within reason. Some days I can’t write, due to travel, being sick, long days at work. But on the days that I can write I will. I’ve done it before, no sense not to keep it going.

3. Skydiving. Who wants to jump out of a plane with me? Kristen’s said many times that she won’t.

4. Exercise. I got into a good routine with running and Gyrotonic sessions last summer and fall, but work and the weather have dropped that to zero. No time like the present to pick it up again.

So. There. Promises I make to myself that may or may not turn out to be lies for the New Year. But, no worries. If they don’t take hold on January 1st, then I can start again on February 1st, or March 7th, or “The Ides of March”, or whenever.

Have a great Twenty-Ten!

One thought on “New Year’s. Again.

  1. Martin

    I’ve never been big on NY resolutions, but I made one last year to start exercising on our home elliptical machine. A year later I’m still at it. I’ve dropped about 25 lbs and I’m back (comfortably) into size 36 pants. Nice to actually make a resolution and stick with it.

    Good luck with the skydiving – I’ll hold onto your stash of models that day in case you don’t come back!

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