My girlfriend Radhika came back from Cambodia with a Tshirt emblazoned with the Lonely Planet logo. Except that, instead of `Lonely Planet’, it read, “Losers plan it”. What can I say? If being a planner means being a loser, a loser – at least in that aspect – I am.
Each year, I resolve to not make resolutions, but I am a sucker for a new start. When studying for exams in school, I could never start a revision stint until the next hour or half-hour. There were always so many hours and half-hours coming up to help soothe my conscience when I discovered I had left something unfinished.
Today, I am an anticipator (goes with my worst-case-scenario outlook to life). I like to get my stories written way before deadline, and plan for all eventualities in advance. My life is all about being 80% prepared and letting the world hit me with the unexpected – but not unanticipated – 20%.
So this year, I do have resolutions – a planner cannot not have them!
I resolve to
- Use my new diary diligently – also so I don’t overstrain my already-overstressed memory. Also use all the relevant functions – to-do lists, memos, calendar – on my Android phone to the same end.
- Try to remember important-to-me people’s birthdays, and call the ones who aren’t on Facebook.
- Try to make this blog more useful to more people, even the few loyal men who indulge me by reading.
- Make fewer impulse purchases, especially of clothes, that I then give away to people I like.
- Save for a rainy day, and go out on a limb and tell other people to save. You, start saving, a recession is really coming.
- Wear clothes that celebrate a comfortableness (I know that is not a word, but do you have a better one?) with my body.
- Moisturise. I know women need to start way earlier than when they’re 41, but it’s never too late to start, right?
- Use – regularly – all those nice body polishes and sprays that I’ve been saving for a more important time.
- Wear my lenses more often.
- Pray every day – meaningfully.
- Go to yoga Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, keeping in mind that I really enjoy the session when I get there.
- Walk – or treadmill – each day at lunch, instead of fiddling about unnecessarily on the internet.
- Buy stronger deodorant to combat the results of the walk-after-lunch. Not talking about weight loss here.
- Try to eat healthier on weekdays, to justify binges on weekends.
- Not panic when school time comes around. I will remember it is Zach who is in school, not I. (I am only the one who must sign the remarks in the calendar when Zach forgets he is in school.)
- Try to be kind, not sarcastic, not superior, when someone doesn’t know something, or do something the way I would.
- Smile more often.
- Smile more sincerely when I do.
- Go with the moment, not overthink situations. Lighten up.
- Overcome my fear of failure, and try new things – even if I might fail.
- Use my worst-case-scenario perspective to empower myself rather than paralyse.
I will, as the old hymn goes, strive to take life one day at a time. Lysa TerKeurst (www.lysaterkeurst.com) says in an emailer (thank you, Christabel, for that forward): “No matter what your struggle has been, victory is possible today. Sadly, most of us don't think that's true. The problem is we tend to measure long-term success while downplaying the absolute victory found in small successes.”
Very true for me. I am very willing to give in to the despair of having failed to spare myself the discomfort of continuing to try. I love how Lysa puts it:
“Big things are built one brick at a time.
Victories are achieved one choice at a time.
A life well-lived is chosen one day at a time.”
I hope you have small goals to achieve this year. And I hope you will continue to achieve them through the year.
PHOTOGRAPH COURTESY MICROSOFT.COM