Up until a couple months ago I thought that the newest Chicken Soup for the Soul book would contain one of my past "From the Trenches" columns. Alas, they pulled it at the last minute. Who knows why. But I figured that this is a good spot to give it one more run. (It appeared in January 2000 -- nine years ago.)
Realistic New Year's Resolutions
Year after year I set New Year’s resolutions that go something like -- “Exercise at least four times every week. Limit sweets and eat more fruits and vegetables. Lose three pounds each month or at least 25 pounds this year.” For fun I occasionally throw in -- “Go on a date once a week with spouse.”
So far my success rate stinks. I’m beginning to think I should label my list of goals “wishful thinking.”
Instead of setting lofty goals, this year I’m trying something different. I’m going to be realistic when making my resolutions. This is the year I will succeed!
I resolve to:
Take my morning shower each day by at least bed time.
Keep the house clutter free for a minimum of 8 hours each day. While this may seem daunting, I figure that if I tidy up before going to bed, the house will be clean through the night–maybe even longer.
Allow my three-year-old to wear mis-matched clothes. Tempting as it may be to insist that she not wear her purple socks with her red and black dress, I’ll refrain and bite my tongue. (Ouch.)
Let my kindergartener wear the same shirt to school for up to a week at a time – as long as it’s still clean.
Not worry about my children’s uncombed hair until it’s time to go out in public.
Not fret if Beans stays in her sleeper until lunch.
Breathe in and out – slowly, if need be.
Drink six glasses of water each day. (And savor the resulting time alone in the bathroom.)
Exercise. . . my patience, that is.
Prepare meals that offer good nutrition and let my kids worry about how much they eat.
Resist eating what’s left on their plates. Better yet, eliminate the temptation to eat their leftovers by immediately running them under cold water.
Wear a smile with my sweats.
Pamper myself a little: paint my toenails at least once this year, buy something impractical to add to my wardrobe, go out with friends at least every other month.
Play Chutes and Ladders with my kids and let them bend the rules a bit.
Let my daughter do my hair (she typically uses 20 barrettes) and leave it in. Hold my head high as I walk down the store aisles.
Willingly sing “Jingle bells” whenever it’s requested.
Find excuses to spend more time together as a family.
Laugh more, grump less.