My Real 2013 Resolutions

After the excesses of the holiday season I made the usual resolutions for the coming year: get fit, eat healthier, etc. Also January was going to be a totally alcohol-free month – especially after my unwise decision to finish off the vodka and wine in the house all in one night as preparation (you know, so it wouldn’t be a temptation). Gah…next time I decide to do something like that, just shoot me in the head. It would be less painful.

I don’t think the no-alcohol rule lasted a week due to insomnia and stress. We don’t drink much usually, but a nice glass or two of scotch while winding down late at night is nice. And so it goes the way of most New Years resolutions.

After the holiday, however, I’ve decided on some belated but more sensible resolutions.

1. Make time for everything. I have a lot of work right now – for the past week or so I’ve worked until after 9:00 every night, including Saturday and Sunday. This makes me stressed and cranky and I still don’t have time for everything. I want to do some personal art, as well as get back into video editing in preparation for doing book trailers. I have a feed reader full of blogs that I don’t have time to keep up with. Taking an hour out of the day to do treadmill is an hour of work lost, but I need to do it. I need to make time for writing every morning.

2. De-clutter. We carry around too much stuff with us, rather like the little character in Labyrinth with the giant pack of things on her back. Clothing that no longer fits needs to go. Books. All of the crap that might be useful but still can’t be stored in an English home built in 1900 (prior to closets and storage). De-cluttering also has to do with letting feelings go that you can’t do anything about. Thanks to the wonders of Facebook during the election and the gun control debate, I’ve come to realise a lot of things that I thought about my family just weren’t true. I am letting them go. I still love them of course, I always will – but I am shutting out all the rest of it, all the noise, all the unpleasantness.

As the joke says, “There’s an app to find out which of your family and friends are racist – it’s called Facebook.”

3. Be a better person. As strange as it may seem, the most insightful thing I think I read all year was in Cracked: 6 Harsh Truths That Will Make You A Better Person. Especially #2. What You Are Inside Only Matters Because of What It Makes You Do:

Inside, you have great compassion for poor people. Great. Does that result in you doing anything about it? Do you hear about some terrible tragedy in your community and say, “Oh, those poor children. Let them know that they are in my thoughts”? Because fuck you if so – find out what they need and help provide it. A hundred million people watched that Kony video, virtually all of whom kept those poor African children “in their thoughts.” What did the collective power of those good thoughts provide? Jack fucking shit. Children die every day because millions of us tell ourselves that caring is just as good as doing. It’s an internal mechanism controlled by the lazy part of your brain to keep you from actually doing work.

Yep. Stop thinking and feeling and doing nothing…because all that matters is what you actually do, what you put out there into the world.

So those are my “real” resolutions for 2013.



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