New Year, New Goals

AnnMarie Beach

The dawning of a new year always fills me with a sense of promise. It feels like a fresh start, even though the reality is, it isn’t. Just the illusion of a fresh start is enough of a motivator to rededicate myself to things I find important. It is a looking forward with a sense of wonder, hope and excitement. The start of 2013 was no different.

Over the years I have figured out that, for me, New Year’s resolutions serve no purpose. I am good at thinking them up, am very enthusiastic at first, but my follow through is lacking (understatement). I think maybe it is the idea of a “resolution” that doesn’t suit me well. I want to grow and improve continuously so being tied into a “resolution” just causes me to become frustrated. This year I have several goals which I plan to evaluate on an ongoing basis. My goals an aspirations will change as the year marches along. I know this to be true.

One of my goals is to lose 20 pounds before June, 2013. I have moved toward this goal by joining a weight loss challenge (or two), purchasing a FitBit One (which I have been using religiously – for a week) and starting the Shaklee 180 plan. Since January 2, 2013 I have lost about 3 pounds. It is a start. I am trying to lose the weight in a way that I can sustain and not feel like I have given up everything I love. I am hopeful.

Another of my goals is to reconnect with some people who are important to me, but with whom I have not been in regular contact with for some time. So far I have reconnected with two friends and plan to reach out to another very soon. This has been very rewarding, surprisingly easy and comfortable. The ease of the connection probably has a lot to do with why I liked these people in the first place. I am not limiting myself to in person contact since I believe this would be limiting. Reconnecting, for this purpose, may be in person or through the wonders of technology – oh, how I love technology – or, gasp, through letters (the paper and pen kind). I am happy.

Another goal I have set is to complete acts of kindness. I am starting with 26 in memory of the 26 lives lost at Sandy Hook Elementary School. I have always liked Ann Curry and her “26 Acts of Kindness” movement speaks to her character and brilliance. It was nice to see something so worth while go viral. My decision to embrace this movement came after I attended Mass on Christmas Eve. The priest spoke about it in his homily. I decided that night that I was going to participate. I don’t intend on stopping at 26, but that is my starting point. I am only counting acts that I would not necessarily have done in the absence of this goal. So far I am at 9. I hope to get to 26 before the start of Lent. Maybe I will then start on 40 acts of kindness for Lent. I am dedicated.

So this is where I will start with my goals for 2013. You may hear more about them as time goes by. You may see some new ones pop up. Who knows what 2013 will bring. I have a good feeling though. We will see…..