Well, timing has never been my strong suit, so Happy New Year! I hope yours is off to a great start. If you’ve made resolutions for your health and fitness, I hope they are still intact! I’ve never been a big resolution person. Oh, I’ve made plenty and probably been as successful and the average American. But I’ve pretty much given up on them and before I start rambling off reasons why, let me say a few things:
Whatever you believe will make you happy and healthy, go for it! I’ll wait for a treadmill, share a lane, or heaven forbid walk the extra 50yds to my car. I’m not going to be an elitist who grumbles all the way to Valentines Day wishing you would get the hell out of my way and let me do a real workout. I may appear grouchy at times, having to wait my turn. But, I’m just impatient. I’m probably just wishing I’d left work an hour earlier; not wishing you out of the gym and back to your couch. I know a few of you will stick, so good on ya!
However, there are a few reasons that I chose not to make resolutions. The first is really as simple as; I’m just not that motivated by the new year. Certainly, my motivation ebbs and flows throughout the year, but I honestly never remember feeling a surge in ‘want to’ with the turning of the calendar.
Perhaps this is the same idea, but if something occurs to me as a way to improve my life, why wait until a new year to implement it? Anyone who ‘saves’ a good resolution until the new year is just sandbagging. If I have a good idea once a year, rarely are they that timely. Yes, at the end of the year we are generally reminded of dozens of inspiring stories from the preceding year and I enjoy it as much as anyone. But if it didn’t make me want to change when it happened, it probably isn’t going to at 11:50pm on 12/31.
A short aside; this pretty much sums up my feelings towards birthdays, anniversaries, and a lot of holidays. If things (or people) are really important to you, you’ll celebrate them throughout the year and the day on the calendar becomes a lot less important. Otherwise, the calendar is just for reminders. Don’t get me wrong, there are plenty of things that deserve our collective remembrance. But if you need a reminder, doesn’t it mean that you’ve forgotten? And if you haven’t forgotten, who needs a reminder (a date). I’m pretty sure this drives my wife NUTS, btw.
My other issue with resolutions is that I always seemed to be resolving to do something. Doing things that are worth while usually takes time. Time is something I seem to run out of quite frequently. I tried resolving to train my body to function with less sleep, and that failed miserably.
Lately (the last 2-3 years), I’ve been focusing on trying to do SOMETHING productive with ALL of my time. I have a lot of lists, some mental, some written, some significant tasks, some mindless ones, some only take minutes, but they all take time. So I’m constantly asking myself, what can I be doing right now? I kind of like it. Even doing the mundane things like laundry when you really don’t feel like doing anything, helps free up time for things you really want to do later, right? I guess it provides a sense of accomplishment, mostly because they’re things I genuinely want to do. The problem is (surprise!) the list never ends.
Another side note: I’ve also recently come to believe things like this article. So instead of ALL the time, its become MOST of the time. My ‘breaks’, down time, veg-out stuff, either come from the list of mindless activities, or I convince my self that I need them. Then they become purposeful, and I’m back to ALL the time, right?
I’ve given it a fair amount of thought actually. There are plenty of things I do that result in wasted time: enjoying beer and watching college football are the first things that come to mind.
I’ve given up LIVE college football before. Fast forwarding through the commercials, instant replay reviews, and half time can actually saves an hour or more from a 3-1/2 hour broadcast. But the communal aspect of live sports really does add to the experience. Watching or texting/tweeting with friends, fans, and random random strangers, as things happen makes it SOOOOO much more fun than intentionally avoiding your phone, the radio, and every TV that might show a scoreboard, highlight, ticker, or update.
That leaves beer. Well, I’m not going to stop enjoying beer, I’m just going to try harder to contain it. There may come a day, but not today. I really enjoying tasting a wide variety of beers and sharing them with friends who enjoy the same. This is a fantastic place and time for beer enthusiasts and I happen to have some very unique opportunities to enjoy it all. I’ll be happy if I’m unproductive while enjoying a beer or two. Its the ones after that, the ones I’m not really ‘enjoying’ in the same way. They’re the ones that lead to unproductive mornings-after. They’re the ones that can afford me the time to resolve to do things.
I may have just talked myself into a resolution after all? Cheers!