We wanted to do a New Year’s post. We really did. Something inspiring about reflections, resolutions, and weight loss. But most of us were with family, some of us were writing papers, and others were handling work crises of epic proportions.
It seems to be the reality of the New Year that it is, in a word, overwhelming.
Self-reflection and goal making are of course worthy endeavors, but if you’re like me, the list of Resolutions always ends up unrealistically long and depressingly similar to my list from the year before. AM I RIGHT?
It’s been my experience that once I have finally settled on the four things that will change my life in 2013, I then look back to my journal entry on Jan 1, 2012 to find that three of the four are the same. As in, identical. Ugh.
So what is the answer? Stop trying? As much as I sometimes wish, I don’t think so.
It tells the story of a nurse who cared for the terminally ill. Because she spent so much time with those facing death, she often spoke with them about the regrets they had when looking back on their lives. The three most common responses she got were:
1-I wish I’d spent more time with the people I love.
2-I wish I’d lived up to my potential.
3-I wish I’d let myself be happier.
These break my heart. Mostly because they seem, to a large degree, so within our control.
It seems as though in our attempts to progress, we sometimes doom ourselves to living skinny lives filled with late nights at alone at the office. Sounds crappy to me.
So this New Year, I’m resolving to think a little differently about resolutions. To simplify instead of complicate. That doesn’t mean there’s any less self-reflection or effort being made. Perhaps it’s just a slightly different kind of effort.
Most likely, you’ve already made your resolutions. After all, we are a few days late to this party. But maybe take a moment to put them through the filter of living a regret-free life. Maybe on occasion, making cookies with a family member beats going to the gym alone. Maybe it’s better to enjoy the process of doing something than to check the box of having it done. I believe in progress as much as the next girl, but I also believe that ambition can rob us of fulfillment, and that, my friends, is the surest recipe for regret.
So for the lateness of this post, we say #sorrynotsorry. Because when I have a choice between sledding with my niece and nephews who I see three times a year and sitting at my computer by myself for an hour, I’m gonna choose the first one. Every time.
Happy Belated New Year to all. We hope 2013 is filled with the best that life has to offer.