all you need is a good font

Christmas vacation is over, and I’ve already made it through a few days back to work.
The inevitable question has been, “what is your new year’s resolution?” and I flounder a bit and say I don’t really do them.
But that isn’t entirely true.
I just can’t ever manage to narrow them down.
And I love new starts. New places. New things. New people. New experiences. But I tell myself that I’m not really into “New Years” and making ridiculous promises that you are inevitably going to break seems a little too what everyone else is doing. Because really, I’m not into accountability.

When I was a teenager. One New Years when I wasn’t out like all my friends because my dad gave me some ridiculous curfew at like 10 pm. I kept trying to tell him that that point of New Years was, you know, being awake at midnight when the actual New Year started…and he generously pushed it up to 10:30. (and on a side note, this New Year’s I said my thank yous and good byes and was happy to be in my car and on my way home by around 10:30 and asleep well before midnight. My dad would be proud that I grew up old and boring)

Back to my story, awake and bored and with not much else to do, I went into the spare bedroom that used to be my sisters and turned on the computer. An old school one that still had Qubert and took up about as much space as an air conditioning unit. I booted up WordPerfect. Thought I was really cool mixing up the fonts and picked a pretty script one and felt very grown up and started a list of my new years resolution.
I went a little crazy and typed for three pages. I probably even wrote “be less wordy”. My list was ridiculous. And corny. But I saved it on my floppy, printed it on my dot matrix printer and tucked it inside my journal. All three pages. 12 point font. That said really specific life changing things like:
Stop procrastinating.
Take more pictures.
Stop swearing.
Pray more.
Get a boyfriend and try not to get bored of him in just a week.
And I’ll stop now before I really humiliate myself. And you can’t have three pages of resolutions. That is not a new start, that is a complete overhaul. But I liked my long ridiculous lists even though I rarely made significant progress in any area and liked to read over them from time to time. I’m sure I could find one (or 5) if I looked in a box in my attic, but I’ll save that for another day. It became some kind of odd yearly tradition for me to write them. And even though I had journals that I sporadically wrote in . These were always typed. I probably stopped some time in college ( partly because there was no such thing as floppy discs and because I was pretty much just writing the same list. Year, after year. Now, I can tell you that they weren’t “resolutions” so much as me writing out who I wanted to be. Me, but improved. Many pages worth of improvements. And I kept hoping and waiting. For that better version of me to show up and make her appearance. I kept thinking. Maybe this year I’ll get to meet her. Every year my lists seemed to get just a little bit longer. And other than parts about getting a boyfriend. I’d be willing to bet that a lot of who I wanted to be more of back then, I’m still lacking.

Last year I wrote that I wasn’t making resolutions. That I was not going to pretend that it was finally going to be the year I was going to get it together. And guess what, I didn’t.

But I miss the girl who used to sit and type ridiculous cheesy lists. Because that girl knew who she wanted to be. And she wrote it down. In really cutesy font. Hoping that maybe 1993 was going to be HER YEAR. Or 1994. or 1995.
And it’s been a while, but now I say, maybe 2012.

The problem with long ridiculous lists is that it is too much to tackle. They were vague. There was no action, no focus and no accountability. So I’m gonna try this a little differently. One part Gretchen Hawkins (The Happiness Project), one part AJ Jacobs ( I love that guy!), and one part Jen Hatmaker ( Interrupted and 7 an experimental mutiny against excess that is totally messing with my tolerance for all my wastefulness). So my list of 12 areas of focus in no particular order:

*My Family (focus one person each week, and the last week….doing stuff together?)
*Adventure – some new “adventure” each week
* Kindness – some random act of kindness everyday
*Quiet. Keeping my mouth shut. Not sure how I’m going to do this. But it is surely an area I need to work on.
*New. Anything but stuff. Try something new everyday.
*Thankfulness – I’m not always the most grateful girl.
*Clean Up and Clean out. I am a slob. And I have too much stuff. I hate to clean. I hate to part with that pair of jeans that will never fit and the billion books I’ve already read…but..mostly I HATE TO CLEAN. HATE IT. but. need to suck it up. My baseboards won’t know what hit them.
* Food (eat better, eat out less, eat on 2$ a day like most people in the world, eat leftovers. I hate leftovers)
* Fasting (?? Maybe something different each week. food, facebook, coffee,TV)
*Prayer (I am awful terrible horrible at this)
* be more responsible w/ my money (write down all my purchases, actually make and stick to a budget, don’t buy anything I don’t need that month)
*Social Justice. Pick something. Learn about it. Do something about it. Get a little uncomfortable in the process.

And I don’t know the rules or the order. Or how much I’ll divulge or write about it. Mostly I’ll just figure it out as I go. My plan is to focus on one area each month. And that is doable. In any font.

(I realize if I was smart enough to actually know HOW to change my font for this post to something cutesy and script it would be better, but blogger doesn't give me those options and I don't know the ways around it.....but I do know that i LOVE this song!)


Kate said...

I've had years of long lists too - but instead of the old dot matrix, I would pull out my fancy colored pens (silver for the really important stuff) and write and write.
I think maybe writing who I want to be would be more productive than the resolutions that never seem to stick. And part of me want to do it right now.
But I'm pulled in so many directions now, I can't even quite recognize the new year. Maybe I'll celebrate at the Chinese New Year. Or maybe this year will be a year of unbirthdays and unnewyearsdays. Because why not? Right?