New year’s resolutions

Since the neighbourhood has become infested with anticipatory Christmas trees, I started thinking about new year’s resolutions. Mostly I’ve never bothered with new year’s resolutions, and when I have they have usually only lasted a few weeks at most.

As a child and then as a teenager once or twice I resolved to write a diary, most likely prompted by the receipt of a diary as a Christmas present. These books with a page a day, or half a page a day, only usually had a handful of entries, I can’t recall what I wrote and the diaries were never kept. When I was younger by the time I returned to school after the Christmas Holiday I would be so distracted by the resumption of normal routine the diary would be forgotten. As a teenager the apparent futility of writing something that no-one would ever read (or probably want to) soon curtailed any enthusiasm, plus there were always more interesting things to do, like taking radios apart or trying to make fireworks out of match heads tinfoil and old pens.

If we are to make resolutions (decide to do a thing and stick with it) why should we constrain that to the new year? Is it just because in the relaxation of the post Christmas anti-climax we seek something to fill the hiatus, and hence turn to new years resolutions? New year’s resolutions usually involve some sort of public declaration of intent in order to reinforce the resolution, but is that really required, if it’s something you wish to do any way?

Last year I decided to take up using a bullet journal, not specifically as a new year’s resolution, I just happened to discover bullet journalling over the Christmas Break. It was not really a resolution as such but I did commit to pursuing the journalling and managed almost 3 months. My commitment to keeping the journal up to date faded somewhat when I was without the journal for a few days after accidentally leaving it on the train.

I’m seriously considering taking the bullet journalling up again. It did enable me to achieve small goals and recognise those achievements. As with all list making exercises it does leave you with a realisation that you cannot get all the things on your list done.  The trick is to remove those things that keep getting pushed into the next day’s or week’s list by either making a concerted effort to do them and get them off the list, or by recognising that you are not going to ever do them, remove them, and stop being burdened by considering them.

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