A Blank Sheet of Paper


I hate New Year’s Eve.  I cannot wait for the clock to strike midnight.

But I love New Year’s Day.

There is something about the “blank sheet of paper” feel of the beginning of the New Year that motivates me to take stock of my life and think about how I want the coming year to go for me.

Anne 44.0, here we go!

And then somewhere around, oh, like today: life gets in the way.

The work out gets cancelled (Resolution 1: Work out/Move more; Resolution 2: Support my best friend in her resolutions) because the meeting ran long (Resolution 3: Less meeting, more working on important things).

Because the meeting ran long there was no time to make a healthy dinner (Resolution 4: Eat healthy and cook more) or write the blog post (Resolution 5: Write).

Arriving home hungry, tired and cranky, one of my teenagers irritates me, and I snap at her (Resolution 6: Be more patient with family).

Clearly, the only logical conclusion is to curl up on the couch (Resolution 1, broken again) with a take-out pizza (Resolution 4, broken again) and watch TV while playing Candy Crush (Resolution 7: Read more; Resolution 8: Don’t spend time and money on stupid things) while ignoring the breakfast dishes that are still sitting on the kitchen counter (Resolution 9: Clean and organize house).

While I am annoyed with my lazy, gluttonous, sloth-like self, I take comfort that I didn’t manage to break all 10 of my resolutions, so maybe I am not a complete idiot.

Until I remember Resolution 10: Be nicer to myself.

Epic fail.

So, do I throw in the towel like 40% of others do when they hit a wall?  Of course I don’t!

I can’t.

Because of my failure at Resolution 9: Clean and organize house, all of the towels are currently in the laundry.

The good news is that the clock strikes midnight every 24 hours, and with it is the chance to have another sheet of paper.  Metaphorically, of course.  Resolution 9 is still in progress, and I am not really sure where to find paper.

There is no special magic to December 31 (except for champagne which is kind of like liquid magic, but that’s another story).

The point is everyday is a day to begin again.  Failure is inevitable.  Quitting is not.  Setting a goal and failing is not failing. Failing to set a goal in the first place is.

It is only when you put small, incremental changes together day after day after day that anything meaningful gets accomplished.  And picking yourself up, dusting yourself off and getting going again is all part of the process of change and growth.

As is learning from those mistakes and using them to move forward.

Like I did.  Just now.

Take that, Resolution 5!

Do you have any tips on keeping your New Year’s Resolutions?