Journal

Resolutions 2018

31 Dec , 2017  

I considered going back to my former, iron-clad resolution: “Make no stupid resolutions you have no intention of keeping.” My commitment – my resolve – has faltered, gradually, the last few years, and that’s one resolution I always managed to keep, till that day a few years ago when I decided to tempt fate and start blogging my aspirational goals for the coming year. This quotation helped me to quit smoking, so my first resolution is to read it and reaffirm my commitment daily till it’s all just a habit:

“Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, the providence moves too. A whole stream of events issues from the decision, raising in one’s favor all manner of unforeseen incidents, meetings and material assistance, which no man could have dreamt would have come his way. I learned a deep respect for one of Goethe’s couplets:

Whatever you can do or dream you can, begin it.
Boldness has genius, power and magic in it!”

— W. H. Murray in The Scottish Himalaya Expedition, 1951

Resolutions 2018

All goals ought to be SMART goals: Specific, Measurable, Aspirational, Reasonable, and Time-Bound. So here goes:

  1. Read (at minimum) two books each month: one for brain food; one for pure entertainment. Discuss them here, on the blog.
  2. Reach goal weight by this time next year; lose 1.35-2 lbs. per week, while exercising for strength and endurance.
  3. Finish #NaNoWriMo2017 before starting #NaNoWriMo2018. (I keep my promises!)
  4. Celebrate National Poetry Month 2018, in April, rather than the A to Z blogging challenge.
  5. Celebrate Banned Books Week 2018 (Sept. 23 – Sept. 29) and continue tradition of encouraging my (now grown) kids to read banned and challenged literature while standing up for free speech.
  6. Travel! Share adventures through stories and photos.
  7. Crochet something soft, warm, usable, and slightly challenging (sampler blanket, sweater, gloves) before the next “Ice Age.” (It’s about 20 degrees here in Texas, as I’m typing this!
  8. Declutter, both physically and mentally. Focus on the blog, leave anti-social media in the dust.
  9. Write and mail postcards to friends (one daily).
  10. Journal offline, at least three times a week, and track achievements (personal and work-related) daily.
  11. Learn Farsi.

That’s enough for now. No, one more: #12 – revisit the list monthly. Never subtract, but add as needed.

Holly Jahangiri

Holly Jahangiri is the author of Trockle; A Puppy, Not a Guppy; and A New Leaf for Lyle. She draws inspiration from her family, from her own childhood adventures (some of which only happened in her overactive imagination), and from readers both young and young at heart. She lives in Houston, Texas, with her husband, J.J., whose love and encouragement make writing books twice the fun.

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10 Responses

  1. Laura Routh says:

    Holly, I wish you the best! And I love the quotation. I’m going to sleep on it and come up with a realistic plan of my own, using the quotation for inspiration.

  2. Happy New Year, Holly. I hope your 2018 is the best year ever!

    My goals/resolutions sound a lot like yours, but I’m aiming to read at least a book a week to help cut down on the time I waste watching television. With all this cold weather, I’m also getting my crochet hook out. I like to work on an afghan during winter so I can have that warmth across my lap as I add rows. I’ll be struggling with either a cat or dog in my lap while trying to crochet, but that just adds to the fun. 😀

    • A book a week is a great stretch goal! I was going to do that, once, but the goal itself seemed to get in the way of my doing it, so this year I set the expectation lower, more reasonable – no reason not to EXCEED it, but I did not want to discourage myself if life got in the way.

      I suggest crocheting the dog or cat INTO the crochet and calling it an objet d’art. 😉

  3. I like your list. Simillar to what I want. I am going to put it on paper for myself. Reading my favorite quote daily is an excellent idea.

  4. […] What is your goal for 2018? I have several – posted at RESOLUTIONS 2018. […]

  5. drtaher says:

    I cannot keep up with my resolutions, period. I would love to create a list. However, right at the top would be: be a better human being than the one I already am. Do good – more good to more people and more causes – according to my abilities and the resources at my disposal. Ameen.

    Learning Farsi – wow. Good luck.

    • Well, Farsi is infinitely easier than Chinese. I’m not sure that’s saying MUCH, but I suspect that (no matter how it’s ranked) it’s easier in some ways than English. I should reserve judgment; does Farsi have irregular verbs? Man davam ketab minevisam…. (and yes, I think I could almost muddle through that in the Farsi alphabet, but am too lazy to install a software keyboard at the moment). Man davam abmiveh mikoram… (No idea if I got that one right… but I think I said “I’m writing a book. I’m drinking juice.” Or, fruit water. 🙂 We’re not up to “truly useful phrases” yet. Mard, zan, ab, abmiveh, rooz nameh, nameh, sag, gorbeh, asb, nan, ghaveh (my favorite!), banafsh (okay, I knew that – also a favorite, of course), shenah, ketab, ashpazi – yay, I know about 20 words and can count to ten. And to be fair, I had a bit of a head start – a friend/coworker was giving me lessons about two years ago, but life intruded and interrupted that. Rosetta Stone is giving me a better grounding in the grammar, I think. But pronunciation-wise, that damned thing goes from “cat” to “casastrophic” in a nanosecond. One minute, we’re doing single-syllable sounds like “da” and “za” and the next minute it wants me to repeat 12 word sentences. WTF?

      As for your resolutions: WRITE THEM DOWN. Next, define “better human being”? (I won’t debate with you whether saving lives – or even just alleviating a bit of misery – is enough good.) Set SMART goals – even just one or two: Specific, Measurable, Aspirational, Reasonable, and Time-Bound. Think about ways you could do more good for more people – feed six hungry homeless people over the next six weeks? Support a refugee for three months? Donate 25 blankets to a homeless shelter? Give 5% of your income to a specific charity for a year? I don’t know – but the more specific, concrete, and deadline bound, the more likely you are to DO it. You may or may not want to blog or even share your plan, but writing it down and putting a written reminder where you’ll see it daily helps.

  6. drtaher says:

    Dear Holly,

    Please, would you tweak your settings to allow people to edit their comment if they wished to? I find myself writing stuff that I sometimes want to edit/add to/subtract from. Is it possible?

    Thanks in advance.

    • I will look into that; meanwhile, you’re always welcome to add or amend with a new comment. I agree, a way to edit them would be good – as long as it doesn’t overly complicate things or break the theme! LOL

  7. […] pretty sure this dream was an over-tired brain’s mash-up of the odd novel I finished as I drifted off to sleep, called An Other Place, by Darren Dash; a few too many slices of pizza […]

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