aqua fortis

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Just One Resolution.

"Now is the accepted time to make your regular annual good resolutions. Next week you can begin paving hell with them as usual." - Mark Twain (source: this WebMD article)

I don't know if I'm going to make any resolutions this year. I'm not sure resolutions are a great idea for me. Not just right now or this year, but in general. You see, I have this problem, which is that I tend to set unrealistic goals for myself ALL OF THE TIME. Then, inevitably, I can't accomplish them, and the less progress I make towards the goals, the worse I feel. And I don't seem to have a good sense of what's realistic in the first place. I'm forever making to-do lists I can't complete—I'll start with a short, achievable list, and then I'll tell myself that this or that MUST get done, or that the short list of tasks is lazy and unambitious, and the list will grow until it's not something I can actually do in a day, or even a few days. And I tend to blame my inability to do all the things on myself rather than a faulty list, and so I feel bad about it.

So perhaps I ought to have one resolution this year and one only:


Corollary #1: Do not disparage small, achievable goals, or belittle their accomplishment by piling on additional work into my justly-earned free time.

Corollary #2: If I fail to achieve a goal, consider whether the fault lies with me or with the goal as stated (e.g. an unrealistically long to-do list).

Corollary #3: Don't underestimate the time it takes to do things—but don't beat myself up over how long it takes, either. It takes as long as it takes. That doesn't mean I'm slow or lazy.

So. That's where I am when it comes to this year's resolution. We'll see how it goes.


zoe mason said...

I've found this site to be quite helpful for me in small goals:

Makes me feel productive even if all I do is make the bed and eat breakfast!


aquafortis said...

Oh, wow--that seems really awesome! Also fun. I may give it a try.

Thanks for the tip! :)

adrienne said...

I never read that Hyperbole and a Half, and WOW it made me laugh and sounds familiar.

Good luck with your resolution. It's a good one, I think, and harder than it should be.

aquafortis said...

Thanks, Adrienne! I think it's going to be one of those resolutions I have to periodically remind myself of because of my tendency to let the to-do list grow unchecked.