Ah… the tough list. The one that gnaws at me every day of the new year. The one that has more to do with who I am rather than simply what I do. If you thought concrete resolutions were hard to keep, you should see how much harder it is to modify thoughts over behaviors. But I studied psychology – I know it can be done.
Here’s what I’d like to do in 2015:
- Spend fewer weekend evenings alone. I spent a lot of time this past year just sitting by myself. As an extrovert, this bothered me a lot. I’m not comfortable spending that much time with myself and only myself. It would get extra difficult on the weekends, because I am so used to reserving my weekends as time to be spent with other people. Spending those Friday and Saturday nights alone was not good for me, so I just have to resolve not to do that anymore.
- In fact, learn how to be alone, full stop. The most frustrating thing I learned about my extroversion was that I could never pull a Thoreau and run off into the woods to live alone. The fact of the matter is that I cannot 100% control if I am alone or not; that depends on other people’s cooperation. So, I have to learn not to fall apart if I am alone.
- Ask for what I want. I don’t know where I got this idea that dropping hints about what I wanted and then pretending I’d be surprised if I somehow did get it was a better idea than just asking for what I want. It’s not. 2015 is the year when I start being frank and direct about what I would like to see from myself and my life.
- Practice my languages. I definitely dropped the ball with my goals here last year, but I need to work on this skillset that I once had. I’ll definitely be trying to dust off my Chinese and French. Will I be able to read a book in a different language by December? Ehhh who knows! This is why this resolution has been moved off the concrete list 😛
- Make time for fitness. AKA the most common and cliché resolution of all time? What I need to do is find something that will keep me on track, whether it’s a class or an event. (Another 5K? Ugh… maybe…) I’d love to find a fitness class that I feel obligated to keep up with, so that’s probably my best bet. This could be a concrete resolution, but in general, I just want to carve out more time for being active.
- Spend more time outside. Sometime in the past 10 years, I went from being a really outdoorsy girl to being an awfully indoorsy girl. It’s probably a combination of my new fear of the sun, aversion to extreme temperatures, and general sexist suggestions that I stay indoors rather than exerting myself outside. I miss being outside. I miss breathing in fresh air. I miss the warmth of the sun on my (SPFed) face without a window interrupting. There is just this alive energy that you can feel when you’re outside and I miss it. Maybe I’ll start hiking this year, who knows!
- Trim the fat. Not only with regards to the above fitness-related resolution. I find that there is a lot of dead weight in my life, in the form of people, attitudes, etc. etc. etc. It’s time to just get rid of all of that, even though it won’t be easy.
- Create schedules and stick to them. I shied away from the idea of writing down an hour-by-hour itinerary for my days but maybe I need that. I know that I am the kind of person who needs a lot of structure to work effectively, and maybe knowing that my 11-12 block is for blogging and not for YouTube is important. On a similar note:
- Have plans every week. This goes with my concrete resolution of keeping up with my planner; it’s hard to make sure there’s something written every week if I don’t have anything planned. It doesn’t have to be going out or meeting up with people but having things to look forward to in the week is really important for my mental health. I used to joke that having really small rewards like whatever I wanted for dessert on a Friday was all that got me through the week. But it was true. Sometimes the only thing that kept me going was knowing I could get an eclair AND chocolate cake AND mango mousse at dinner in just a few days, so I need to make sure I have similar little rewards for just surviving.
- Discipline, discipline, discipline. This will always be one of my biggest struggles but I think the key is creating a system where I have no choice but to do what I need to do. Again, structure reigns supreme in my life, and if I create a sturdy frame for my life, everything else should fall into place.
This year feels different. I ended 2014 feeling a bit down, but last night, I struggled to sleep because I was riding this momentum swelling within me. I was so excited about the things I wanted to do and the person I wanted to be that I couldn’t sleep. What was almost as energizing as this feeling was the fact that I was feeling it at all. Just days ago, I was feeling stuck, not sure where I was or where I was going, more than happy to just sleep all of my days away to escape that feeling.
It’s a great way for me to start the year and I feel optimistic that I can change for the better and get closer to becoming the person I want to be.