I totally admit that 2010, my first full year of parenthood, wiped me out. And for all of the new strengths that I have gained since my daughter was born (and they are plentiful), I have as many or more new weaknesses. Add to that all of the existing weaknesses that have since been pulled out of their hiding places, and I’m a pile of accidents waiting to happen. But quite strangely, I’ve never felt more prepared to meet the challenges in front of me.
I really didn’t want to make any resolutions for 2011, but something about the number 1 makes it impossible to avoid. It’s such a natural reset moment, I can’t help but try to take advantage. I’ve always been pretty terrible at them, but after the last year, I think I’ve figured my own secret to making them work for me.
What’s made me so bad at New Year’s resolutions is not the keeping of them, but the making of them. Resolutions are supposed to test your resoluteness, so they don’t really work when the resolution is so impossible that it’s too easy to break. Mine, like most resolutions, failed on one of two levels. First, they were far too utopian— for example, “I will go to the gym every day.” When I don’t go to the gym on January 2nd, even if I don’t miss another day, I’ve failed the resolution, so I may as well remove it from the list. The others were too vague— for example, “I will record more music.” This kind of resolution leads me to believe that I could actually accomplish it during the last half of next December, but really what happens is that I decide to just wait until January and try a different wording of the resolution.
So for now, rather than bother with resolutions that I don’t even have time to write, I am officially replacing them with resolutenesses. That is, resoluteness in several different categories that are important to me. Every day, I just keep trying. So far it’s working pretty well. I’ve done a lot of recording, gotten a lot of work done that’s been sitting here, and I’m chipping away at everything in quantities that I can actually handle. It’s much better than being overwhelmed and feeling like a failure.
This blog entry is the perfect example. I really wanted to write a blog a week, and I was going to write one every Monday. But when I missed Monday, I shifted to Friday. And when I missed the first Friday of the year, I just tried to get to it as soon as I could.
And I did get to it. Just now, in fact.