Saturday, December 28, 2013

You Say You Want A Resolution...

Every year I watch as people make resolutions. Every year I watch as people slowly forget their resolutions. I don't know if I've ever made a resolution. Not because I'm afraid of failing. But because I'm afraid of succeeding and don't want to change. While most people want to better themselves, and I know that I should, I sort of don't. This year is no different - I'm not making any resolutions. But, I feel that my goal list 25 by 25 sort of counts.

I know that if I set a goal, I will follow through. I believe that if I tell someone something, I'm held responsible for the things I say I'll do. This is why I haven't missed an assignment in school. I think that I make a commitment to the work. However, I know that is not the norm. I think most people set resolutions, while consciously wanting to achieve them, already knowing they will not follow through. Maybe it has to do with having seen parents do this. Maybe it was learned somewhere else. I don't know. And I don't think it really matters. But most people set resolutions knowing that they'll forget them in a few weeks. And with that mindset, it makes sense that these goals are not achieved.

This is what I plan on talking about to achieve goal number 17. I want to talk about manifesting. But not just about The Secret, as it is often called, but also how you can't simply want something. Wanting something is the first step to getting it, but there are steps that need to be taken in order for a goal to be achieved. I also want to talk about how every day is the start of a new year and it doesn't have to be the first of the year to make a change. People like using the arbitrary calendar to make changes in their lives. However, every second is the start of a new year. You're just starting at a different time. I think that's an especially important idea for people who are in or who are trying to achieve recovery. Any time is a good time to start. It's also important, I think, for people to know that getting part of the way there DOES count. And IS important to recognize. To complete a race you DON'T have to win. In fact, you probably won't. But watching the race instead of training for it doesn't help. But every time you go on a run or even a walk, it does help. However, there is a fine line between this and making excuses for why you can't do something. So nothing is definite and everything is subjective.

I've usually been able to achieve the goals I set out to do. I think most of us are capable to do this. If you haven't achieved your goal, you haven't been working at it long enough.The school I went to when I was very little gave out awards at the end of the year. The teachers picked one word to describe each child and gave him/her a "diploma" with the word on it. When I was graduating from kindergarten at four years old, I too was given my own word, perseverance. My teacher, as she gave me the document with this word on it, explained how I never gave up, how, if I wanted something, I would work at it until it happened. The example she gave was the monkey bars. Not the easy wood bar ones, but the rings. Where only one hand can fit at a time per ring and you have to swing to get across, especially when you're three feet tall and forty pounds (very random estimate). When I started school, at three, I couldn't do it at all. However, over the year I tried and tried and tried. My hands would blister, but then the blisters turned into calluses. I fell into the wood chips again and again. But I was determined. I wanted to do the monkey bars like the other kids could. Mind you, only a few could, and they were twice my age, but that didn't matter. And I worked and worked until I could do it. (Of course now I can barely hang for a few seconds, but the important thing is that I could then.) The teacher watched me every day at recess try to make it across the rings. Often she would tell me that it was okay that I couldn't do it. This was one of those times where she was trying to make an excuse and not look on the bright side. However, I didn't listen, and I wouldn't (and didn't) give up until I could make it across.

Perseverance, steadfastness in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success.

Now, I wonder what drove me to do things. I know, now, if there's something I want, and I actually try, it will happen. I just don't actually try. Maybe it is because I'm afraid of failing. Or, like I said before, maybe I’m afraid of changing. Maybe it's because I just have no drive.

I find myself wondering if I still have that trait. Part of me thinks I absolutely do. I am still here, despite it being very, very difficult. But on the other hand, I think that that word shouldn't be used anywhere near me. How can it be if I've given up so many times I've given up on giving up? Or does that just put me back in the perseverance category?

What changes do you plan to make in the new year? Or, better yet, what changes are you going to make RIGHT NOW?
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