I tend to think making resolutions is both arbitrary, when it comes to a new year, and means setting myself up for failure. But, well, it's been a year of some successes and lots of failures, so I have nothing to lose heading into 2011. And really, I think if this year taught me anything it's that I have to just keep moving forward. I never in a million years would've thought I'd get a tattoo, or do a lot of the things I did this year. I traveled probably too much and yet got to do some amazing things, like visit a sunny Minneapolis in March and doing something for the teevee that I hope I can tell you more about soon.
Anyway, I watched a few minutes of the movie version of Alice in Wonderland and it reminded of the "six impossible things before breakfast" line. I usually cut myself off before the thought has even been completed, especially when I have tried and failed and tried and failed, as is the case with several of the things on my list. And maybe there'll be more, but if I get through these before 2012, I have a feeling I'll be a lot more at peace.
1. Finish my novel. That's all I say for the moment, save for that impossible has started to seem like an understatement. Demoralizing, depressing, makes me feel like I have nothing to say and no organizational ability. It's stressful and scary and I need to just get over myself and finish it. Will keep you posted; in the meantime, trust me, don't ask.
2. Make my apartment livable. Or at least, visitable. This means turning an old bedroom into a storage room or office, getting rid of mountains of clothes that were never sorted through during the big personal organizer week in January, and just general culling and tossing and sorting. And probably lots more, but I'll start with that.
3. Lose 25-30 pounds/drop a clothing size. I hate weighing myself and hate the idea of having to resort to that as a measurement, but that and/or being a size six, and keeping at that weight, I'll take. I made a lot of progress earlier this year when I was working out with a trainer, but that's become financially implausible, not to mention I don't feel like walking in the cold during the day, so I need to keep up with the training on my own. Much easier said than done. The number on the scale does matter, but it's also an "I'll know it when I see myself in the mirror" type of thing. All I know is right now? Is not where I want my body to be and is not making me happy and doesn't make me feel sexy. Or rather, I'd feel happier and sexier if I were at my goal weight/size, and I also feel better generally when I'm eating healthier and exercising rather than eating crap, not sleeping (yes, it is 4:47 am as I type, hi insomnia) and being lazy about hitting the gym.
4. Start carrying just one purse out and about on a daily basis, unless there is a special reason I need more shoes/clothes/laptop.
5. Not bounce any checks/have any overdraft fees. I don't even know how many overdraft fees I incurred this year, but at $34 a pop, they are inexcusable, except sometimes, well, my cash flow is not the best. Part of the problem is that when I get a big check, I send a lot to pay off my student loans and the rest goes to, well, life, travel, clothes, expenses. I'm bad at the part where you store X amount away for a rainy day or an emergency, especially when I know more checks are on the way. So I would love 2011 to be the year I start over.
6. Fall in requited, drama-free love. Have, like, a normal relationship that has a future. Perhaps the hardest one of all, at least, the requited part. This is not the time or place to rehash my dating ups and downs of 2010, but there were lots of both and I'm ready to close the door on all of them and start afresh in 2011. Not afresh like finding a whole new cast of characters, but afresh like taking time to focus on the things that are really important, like the above items, and not be quite so hasty in my choices in this area. I don't want to be cynical, but I do want to take a few steps way back because whatever I've been doing? It's not working. And that's okay, it really, really is, as long as I learn from it. I make lots of "resolutions" to myself in this area but they are very easy to break, because the goal seems, ahem, impossible, so why bother with principles? But yes, there actually is a reason: because I care about myself and my goals and values. It's very very easy for me to forget about those when faced with other people's goals/values/ideas but I'd rather find someone who actually shares mine. And if not, well, that'll have to wait til 2012.
I have other goals like, um, be on time about 90% of the time (gotta give myself some leeway here) and certain publications I'd like to write for. And something that I have no control over but will send out into the universe anyway: I would really, really, really like one (or more!) of my books to be picked up for translation. Spanish is the only language I can even approach reading but I'm not picky. It's not even a money thing so much as I think it would be very cool and I've had a few short stories get translated into German and Italian and Japanese and I think especially my latest round of anthologies would work very well in some other countries. So, yes, I hope that happens, universe.
There was a time if you'd told me I wouldn't drink any Diet Coke for 3 years I'd have thought for sure that was impossible. I had some earlier this year and found it totally vile; I couldn't even finish a can. Of course, I've now replaced that with my Starbucks hazelnut coffee habit, but that I justify because I think it makes my brain run faster and it calms me down (even if it's not actually calming my body down, it soothes me, which to me equals "calms me down").
So, well, that's it. These are pretty much either day-to-day tasks and/or long-term goals that I can't exactly monitor by hovering over them, but just have to live them.