21 January 2012

Goals, Resolutions, and a Fresh Start

It's a snowy Saturday here in Philadelphia, which would be nice except that it is topped off with freezing rain.  Which of course ruins the effect of the snowy Saturday.  Not that I had plans to be outside, other than to take Dug for a walk, which already happened this morning, and which he really enjoyed.  (Though he was anxious to be dried off when we got home!)

Anyway, as I am still recovering from this stupid pneumonia, I'm just as glad to have a reason to stay inside.  You may remember that I said before that I had been giving some thoughts to what I wanted the coming year to be for myself.  I'm not really too great at New Year's Resolutions, in that - at least in the past - I've been completely unrealistic, and also felt that I *had* to succeed, and the combination was conducive to failure, as you may have guessed.  I've gotten a little bit better about that, and realized that resolutions can also be goals.  (Maybe they should be anyway?)

When my niece Amanda and her husband were here over the holidays for a visit, we were discussing New Year's Resolutions.  I said that rather than saying I MUST do _____, I wanted to try in the coming year to "do everything better."  Meaning that I wanted to try and be more mindful, try harder, and improve myself more, but not so drastically that it would be unpleasant, impossible, or just plain ridiculous.  Things can be "better" without having to be the BEST all at once.

With this in mind, I read a lot of articles, blog posts, and other things about setting realistic goals, and I came across something I decided to try.  One of the blogs I read had this post, where she talked about something she tried last year called One Little Word.  She chose the word "Joy" and the post talked about how she kept herself on track over twelve months.  I remembered reading her post about choosing "Joy" last year, and was glad that she followed up - and then decided to try again this year, choosing the word "Create."  The site for One Little Word is here, and apparently you can sign up for a one-year workshop type of thing.  Which is fine, but I decided to try and do this on my own.

So how does this work?  Well, according to Pam:

The premise of it is that you choose a word.  One word.  Then you focus on that word for a year.  No resolutions.  No this-and-that.  One word.

I've chosen "kindness" for my word.  I want to see if I can be a kinder person.  It's easy for me to be kind to animals, and to others who are nice and kind to me, but I want to see if I can make kindness something I just DO.   Because it's suggested that you have prompts for yourself, I bought myself this necklace to wear, and this poster to put over my desk.  (I often have the hardest time with kindness at work.)  I don't expect to become Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm (nor do I want to do that!), but perhaps I can become a person who, though cynical, can still have kindness be an important part of my life.  Did I NEED the necklace or the poster?  Well, I'm sure I could survive without them, but I wanted to give myself some serious prompts, and spending money made me think about how much I'm going to try and commit to this whole idea.

So here I go, and we'll see how I do.

What about you?  Any plans, goals, or resolutions that you are trying this year?


pam said...

Yay for choosing your word!!!! AND I love, love, love your necklace!

Lorraine said...

Bridget- My resolution was to ditch my credit card, so I've been going commando.

I think if you were Rebecca of Sunnybrook farm, we wouldn't have much in common.

Marie said...

I like your idea of trying to be kinder. A little kindness goes a long way. After my resolution crashed and burned on the first day after New Year's on year, I gave up making resolutions. But resolving to do things better is good. Way to go!

Brigitte said...

I agree with Lorraine - I don't have many Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm friends...

This year, all I ask is that I learn to be kinder to myself. Not in the material sense, but by not beating myself up, and being so damn hard on myself. It's amazing how many other things fall into place when you remember to do that.

Carrie K said...

I love the Word for the Year.

You know, on that poster, some of them are battling being complete morons. It's a battle they've already lost.