Why I'm bucking tradition and doing things a little differently this year.
That sums up how I feel about New Year Resolutions. We've heard them all before..."I'm going to Lose 20 Pounds...I'm going to train for a marathon...I'm going to the gym every day...I'm going to read War and Peace (well, maybe that one is a stretch but you get the picture).
As I said, Bleh.
“I can't think of any other way to feel like a complete and utter failure than to make a list of unrealistic expectations that I know I won't keep.”
Instead, I'm making this a year of Unresolutions...things I will do happily that in a small way will make my life, and my year, even better.
Make My Bed.
Easy peasy. I love my bed. I love my crisp white sheets and my lace edged pillow cases. My bed gives me great comfort and to be honest I hate getting out of it in the morning. However, what I hate even more is crawling into a messy, wrinkled mess at the end of the day. Thus, I religiously make my bed every single day. There's a perfect window of time while I'm waiting for the water to heat up in my shower...that little two minute slice of time that enables me to smooth my covers, plump my pillows and make sure that my bed will be inviting and comfortable when it's time to turn in at night.
Say No to the News.
I am an avowed news junkie. Living in DC for over 20 years has made me attuned to every tweet, every sound bite, every scandal, every little juicy morsel that comes my way. The DC Me turned the news on every morning, and the news stayed on until it was time to hit the sack. But interestingly, the Florida Me doesn't even have a television on the main level. My one TV is in a small gathering room on my second floor and it rarely even gets turned on. So now, my morning ritual is to make my coffee, head outside to the rocking chair on my back porch, and watch the boats go by. Every once in a while a crane or a heron peeks over the sea wall to see what I'm up to, but I must admit I enjoy the sounds of the birds calling to each other far more than pundits coming through my surround sound any day. Saying No to the News helps me start my day in a peaceful, rather than a combative way. Plus, I can always find out ANYTHING I need to know on Twitter.
Go On A Hunger Strike.
Ha! Got your attention there didn't I? No, I'm not talking about a real hunger strike, I'm talking about not filling my refrigerator with tons of food that I won't eat and end up throwing out anyway. You know the drill: you buy those beautiful vegetables, or all of the ingredients for some fab Tasty recipe that you're trying to replicate from Facebook, then what happens? Life happens. This meeting, or that person you need to pick up from the airport, or drinks with friends that turn into way too many apps that turn into no energy or time to cook dinner, then guess what? Your entire weeks' worth of groceries has spoiled and you end up tossing it all. My solution? I buy in small quantities and ONLY what I know that I will eat. That way, when the cupboard (or the refrigerator) is bare, I know it's time to stock up again and not over buy tons of stupid crackers and chips and a million bottles of salad dressing (because obviously I forget what I already have in the larder). Finishing what you have and replenishing it is easier on the budget AND on the waistline.
No Product, Please.
I can't be the only person in America who feels like she has an entire Walgreen's pharmacy worth of hair product in her bathroom. Even going to the hairdresser to get my locks trimmed or my blonde 'blonded' again turns into an opportunity for me to try that ONE MORE MIRACLE PRODUCT that will de-frizz, de-tangle, silken, straighten, glossify, and otherwise manage my somewhat unmanageable hair. As a result, I could open my own salon with all of the gel, goop, serum, spray, mousse and conditioning balm that's in my vanity. It's ridiculous. So I am Just Saying No to buying any more product. Period. My goal is to use up what I have on hand and then when my shelves and drawers actually have room in them again I'll stock back up.
Be Kind...To Myself.
This past year I had one project in particular that I thought was going to put me over the edge of sanity. I was working 12 hours a day, 7 days a week to meet the client's deadline, having only 6 weeks to complete a job that should have taken 6 months. The client was texting me at all hours of the night and day...my phone would start beeping at 6 am and continue past midnight. I was stressed out beyond belief, I lost 10 pounds, I wasn't eating right, and it took a toll on me mentally and physically. My friends would all tell me 'You need to take a day off. You need a break'. But of course, that would be CRAZY to allow myself a day just to breathe, or go walk on the beach, or read a book, or (here it comes...) RELAX. I simply WOULD NOT ALLOW myself to do anything other than push myself to the point where I thought I would need to check into a rubber room somewhere. So this year, I'm doing things differently. I am setting limits with my clients as to appropriate hours that they are free to contact me. I am allowing myself up to 24 hours to respond to an email, and I am also letting my clients know that any communication received over the weekends will be handled on Monday. And I will go to the beach on my days off, and I will spend time throwing a ball with my puppy, and I will rent a scary movie and eat popcorn instead of reviewing purchase orders because guess what? It's just decorating. I'm not working on negotiating world peace here...I'm picking out fabric for pillows and determining whether the barrel chair or the club chair would look better in the guest bedroom. Taking myself less seriously will be a good thing...trust me.
I only have one me, just as you only have one you. Many people depend on me...my sweet daughter, my employees, my clients, my friends...and if I'm at my WORST I can't be my BEST for them. So, yes, I'm taking steps to change my life in small ways by following my list of Unresolutions. Because if I feel better about these little changes that I make, and they make me feel like I'm accomplishing something, then that makes me happier. And Happy is GOOD.
Until next time...