I came up with a handful of good, meaningful New Year’s resolutions but by Jan. 2, I had failed most of them.
My resolutions usually involve consistency by making sure I do the things that better my life every day.
I wanted to stretch every day. On Jan. 1, I laid my yoga mat out on the floor in front of my mirror. I put my yoga wheel beside it and set my laptop up with an online yoga video. I was off to a good start, with a deep stretch to set me up for a year of flexibility.
On Jan. 2, I stepped over my yoga mat on my way to the kitchen without a second thought.
I told myself I would be active every day. In the same vein as stretching, I’m aiming for that overall physical improvement in 2020. On New Year’s Day, I clicked into my classic skis and traveled along Exit Glacier Road until I had worked up a sweat on a cold afternoon.
The next day my skis, my running shoes, the gym, a nice workout on my already laid out and set up yoga mat all called to me. I didn’t answer.
In 2020, I promised myself I would read something (outside of work or news) every day. “Easy!” I thought. “I love to read!”
I have a stack of “to read” books next to my bed.
And it was easy, almost too easy! I picked up “The Heart’s Invisible Furies” by John Boyne on New Year’s Day. I had dabbled in the pages the prior year, but I picked up the book again with my renewed dedication to reading all year long and dove in.
And, I didn’t come out.
I stayed up late into the night that first day of 2020, until it was the second day of 2020.
The next morning (closer to afternoon in reality) I hopped out of bed, over my yoga mat and onto the couch with a cup of coffee and the next chapter.
The book, recommended to me by my pen pal reading partner cousin in New Jersey, engulfed me.
It’s a sweeping, epic that travels through time, across countries and in and out of love stories, family drama and cultural movements with Cyril Avery, an Irish orphan.
It’s a really damn good book and I didn’t put it down until I was done with it.
On Jan. 2, I ignored all the plans I had for the day, heck, for the year! I only focused on reading.
There were moments on Jan. 2 where I thought about putting down the book but, well, as Cyril says in its pages:
“Anything is possible, … But most things are unlikely.”
I didn’t finish John Boyne’s novel that second day either. But, the morning of Jan. 3 brought me closer to the finish. I woke up early, reading in the coffee shop for two hours before going into my office.
Once there, it took everything in my power to not crack the cover beneath my desk.
Instead, I took a realistic look at the progression of my day and decided, personal days are to be used for reasons other than illness or vacation, and whatever that reason may be is entirely up to me.
So, on the third day of January I left work early to finish a book that left me sobbing happy tears for 20 minutes on my couch once I reached the last line.
2020 was off to an interesting start but I couldn’t say a bad one. I enjoyed every minute of reading that book, no matter how consecutive those minutes were.
And I quickly learned that although I think I want a daily ritual in my life this year, in practice I’m much more prone to gluttony.
So, it’s Jan. 10 and my resolutions have shifted. I’m still working on my patience but instead of demanding I do the things that make me feel good every day, I just want to promise myself that I’ll do them.
I’ll read when I’m interested, I’ll stretch when my body tells me and I’ll exercise when I think I should.
And if I follow that mantra, there’s no way I’ll do either of them any less, and I’ll be happy.
For the Clarion