New Year’s Resolutions

I know it is pretty trite to make a post of New Year’s Resolutions, but so be it. For several years New Year’s has actually been my favorite holiday, which may sound strange to a lot of people. I love Christmas and all the family and joy surrounding it, but it’s a holiday that is a little bit bloated with traditions and presents and stuff. I wouldn’t want to take away any of the things that we do surrounding Christmas because I love all of those traditions. However, I love that New Year’s doesn’t have any of that. Usually it’s just a quiet day with nothing in particular that you’re expected to do. I like using that day to reflect on the past year and the things I’d done to make myself better, or ways in which I had fallen short and renew my commitments to be a better person. There’s still the lingering spirit of Christmas and time spent with family, but there’s no pressure to do anything.

This year of course I didn’t really use the day to make my resolutions but spent the day with my husband just relaxing. It was a much needed break so I don’t feel bad about putting together my resolutions a few days later.

I’ve heard the argument that New Year’s Resolutions are silly because there’s not really something magical about the New Year that makes it good for making changes. On December 31st the clock changes from 11:59pm to 12:00am the same as it does on any other day. This is true and I fully agree that we shouldn’t need to wait for the New Year to make changes. It would be better to evaluate ourselves every single day and constantly be striving to improve. However, I like it as a milestone where I have an excuse to reflect on the path my life is taking me on and if it’s the path I’d like to be on. Ideally I try to check in with myself each week and set weekly goals and see how I’m doing on my yearly goals, but I’m not always perfect on that. At least once a year though I know that I’ve evaluated the direction of my life and that’s a good feeling.

Brittny’s Resolutions for 2009

  1. I will learn to balance motherhood, being a wife and working. This is probably my biggest goal for this coming year. It’s not easily quantifiable like a lot of my other goals but it’s definitely the most challenging. Being a mother is going to be a whole new adventure that I’ve never encountered before but I’m excited for it. Less than 2 months remain before our little Samuel is here and I know that my life will never be the same again. I’m not sure how it will go trying to be a supportive wife, mother a baby, keep house, and work from home. Luckily, I know what my priorities are and I’ve accepted that some things that were once priorities may have to slide. We’ll see how this goes.
  2. I will make it to the temple once a month. Once upon a time I was making it to the temple every week, but having a full time job and being a housewife have seemingly put a damper on that. Plus, since Eric and I work opposite schedules it has become very difficult for us to even coordinate a time to go. So, the lofty goal of weekly attendance will have to take a backseat to the more realistic goal of monthly attendance for the time being.
  3. I will complete my visiting teaching monthly. This should be a given, but I’m not always as good at this as I would like to be. It’s always easier to make sure this is getting done when I have a specific resolution to do it as well as the commitment that I’ve always had in my heart.
  4. I will feed our family more nutritious meals. I need to work on adding more fruits and vegetables into our diets and less processed foods. Hopefully this will get easier as I won’t be commuting to Salt Lake starting in a couple of weeks and I’ll have more time available to me to cook decent meals for us.
  5. I will exercise at least twice a week. I know that the recommendation is for at least three times per week (and really for every day of the week). However, considering my current workout schedule (read: hardly ever) I don’t want to overwhelm myself with a goal that I’ll never be able to achieve and use that as an excuse to give up. I know that I’m not going to lose all of the baby weight immediately, but I’d like to work my way down to a healthy weight by the end of the year.
  6. I will do better with my daily scripture study. I really love reading the scriptures, but for some reason it always takes a lot of effort to start reading them. I think partly because I have a Pavlovian response to reading the scriptures – they make me sleepy. See, my family always read scriptures as the last thing before going to bed at night, so my body associates scripture reading with bedtime and I automatically start yawning as soon as I open them, regardless of the time of day. I would really like to try and break that reaction and start reading at the beginning of the day when I’m more alert. But if nothing else I’d like to at least do better about making it a more consistent part of my daily routine.
  7. I will do better about having personal morning and evening prayer as well as praying with my husband each night. I think this has been a resolution of mine every year since I started making resolutions (well, except for the praying with my husband part). It’s still not something I’m super great at so it will continue to be a goal until I am (which probably means until I die).
  8. I will memorize 10 scriptures. I still need to decide what these 10 scriptures will be, but I know that as I have more scriptures memorized it helps me to remember the things that are important. I haven’t really memorized new scriptures since seminary but I think it will be more fun to memorize ones that I choose rather than just the ones given to me on a list.
  9. I will add 5 new meals to our family’s repertoire of meal plans. I have a relatively limited number of meals that I can make well and we end up eating those over and over again. I’d like to find some new recipes that I can master over the course of this next year that are healthy and relatively simple. This goal is two-fold in that I want to improve my cooking skills, and add variety to our weekly meal plans. (any recipe suggestions would be more than welcome 🙂
  10. I will read 5 novels. Once upon a time this was not a goal for me at all but more of a monthly occurrence. However, I no longer find time to read books that I enjoy like I once did. This is a goal that goes along with my goal of balancing things. It’s something that I should do for myself, not necessarily for any great personal improvement.

I’m sure there are other goals that I ought to set for myself, however it’s probably best if I limit myself to 10 or I will be too overwhelmed by the volume of my goals to complete any of them. I’ll try to check in periodically throughout the course of the year and see how I’m doing on each of these goals. Here’s to a bright new year full of possibilities!

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