There are two times in a year when there is intense pressure to feel something, do something. These are the days preceding
1. When the whole world starts afresh on a new lap around the sun
2. When we turn a year older along that same lap.
It’s a lot of pressure.
Pressure to make a difference, pressure to reflect, pressure to party, pressure to be good, pressure to be bad if the last year was too good, pressure to not repeat the past year, pressure to be stronger in mind, pressure to not feel like a loser, pressure to become fit (it’s actually become thin, but we shall stick to politically correct ideas here) and such, including the pressure to have a resolution.
Every channel, magazine, blog (including mine now), from December 29th through January 5th are addressing this issue. That is the standard question that’s aimed at you regardless of where you go. Even the grocery store.
I buy Chobani greek yogurt, fruits and oatmeal, and the nice middle-aged lady at the checkout who is usually tight-lipped breaks into a grin as she asks me:
“New year’s resolution to eat healthy I see!”
In a society that swims and shudders under the everydays, I am guessing most thrive on this particular time of the year. It’s a time to fix it all, make amends and feel like you’ve been given a second (regardless of how many years you have been around) chance to fix things. It’s redemption. It is also a time to look back and surprisingly feel good about ourselves. The ones that really stick with us are the extreme incidents.
The awesome and the ugly. The good and bad are usually best forgotten, our days are filled with them that our sub-conscious couldn’t care to hold it all together. Space is precious.
We aren’t new and generations will continue to go through the pangs of January. The month is in itself an indication of expectations set on us by the Romans. January is named after Roman God, Janus: the one with two heads, one looking behind and one looking ahead. He is apparently the custodian of the Universe in which we live. The gate keeper.
The idea was that by looking behind us, we can learn from our “mistakes” and look forward to a better year as a better person.
With firm tradition in place, there really is no escape for us who do not want the burden of falling for this resolutions and goal settings. Didn’t our ancestors also say that”History repeats itself”. We all know for a fact that the list that we judicially and painfully pen down is a deja vu moment. The one that repeats itself every New year. From the time we become adults I mean. Don’t believe me, grab the nearest kid around you (kid by definition is a person who isn’t an adult! :-) ) and ask
“So buddy, what’s your new year resolution”
Pat will come the answer: “resolution? Just to survive I guess:” will be one cocky teenager’s while a smaller pint size may reply with “what’s a resolution” and if you take the time to explain, they would still come back with “I donno” and go promptly back to their game or book. Or they may come back and say “eat more candy (insert favorite food) and play more (insert favorite game)
He’d be right. The child is not capable of looking that further ahead into time to balance the pros,cons and repercussions of the actions that govern the thoughts of that day.
I would love to be a kid.
Unfortunately, that isn’t a luxury anymore, so I, along with the rest of the adults will reflect and form some resolution and promise my image in the mirror. Though, truth be told, one cannot be held responsible for anything we say to ourselves on a hangover morning. Hangover of any kind of the night before. Finding our toothbrush and remembering what we ate for dinner last night would be a challenge in itself, where is the question of remembering what we tell ourselves that moment?
I have some goals for me to accomplish. I’d like to get to that place in 2012, but I have learnt not to trust life and situations that awkwardly jump at you from nowhere. After all, we are supposed to learn from our past. We know our strengths and we know that we ought be reasonable in our demands. Sometimes I think having one large goal and a multitude of smaller ones leading to the large goal may help. Divide and conquer as they say.
Ive known folks who have excel spreadsheets of goals. To be attained according to timeframes. The organization and grit bowls me over. I am not organized to the tee, and after desperate attempts as resolutions on new years and otherwise, I have resolved not to have any organisation based resolutions. Learning from the past,so to speak.
But I do envy them, coz they seem better strategists and are willing to go that extra mile to get to where they want to go. A recent revelation was that I do best with visual cues. So I took a lesson from these super organized (and successful) folks and added in a bit of me and now I have visual cues on what I have to do to reach a place.
I like deadlines to be my guide more than my boss. I don’t do too well with authority. Even from my own sub-conscious. So this works well, for now.
So what’s my resolution for 2012? Nothing yet. Am sure it will have something to do with fitness and writing. Something that will affect this site too.
But …this is deja vu. I had similar plans for 2011, and for 2010 too.
Somehow, lessons of the past are like childhood blankets. They smell bad but when engulfed in them, the warmth is comforting.
Have a good 2012 all!