Friday, December 30, 2011

Resolutions 2011

For the past several years during the last week of December, I have sat down and prepared a list of New Year's resolutions. The items that I list are not of the sort, "Gee, I hope I win the lottery!" Instead, they represent areas where there is some deficiency in my life that I recognize (which for me is the first step to taking action), and then I consciously work to give effort to make adjustments or improvements.

As I make my new list of resolutions for the year ahead, I also look back to see how well I succeeded with my goals from the year just past. As you might imagine every year, not everything goes as I had hoped or wished. This year was no different. But even though my resolutions are deeply personal to me, perhaps by sharing I can help encourage someone out there to realize that giving your best effort is equally as important as succeeding. When I can look back on something that has not gone well or ended badly, if I can say that I did everything that I could, I find that regret does not sink its jagged talons into my flesh.

So, here is my list with a brief commentary for each item.
  1. To ask a woman out on a date - I went out on one date this year, but only one. At least I tried and kept my eyes open.
  2. To exercise the whole year - Here I made an unqualified success. I was consistent from start to finish and did everything that I wanted.
  3. To make several new friends - I thought that I had a few folks that I was getting close to and was enjoying their company. It turns out that for several reasons none of these folks is any longer in my life. So this goal definitely was not met.
  4. To grow closer to God - I'm not sure that I made progress here. I have focused on my prayer life, go to church and give, and read my devotionals. For whatever reasons, God has felt so distant from me this year and it is having an effect on me.
  5. To grow closer to my daughter - I have never loved my daughter more, but this past year has been difficult for both of us as she is growing up and I am struggling to let go. However, I am doing everything that I think I am capable of doing to be a good father to her.
  6. To find some degree of happiness and peace - Another year has passed and I still struggle to hang on. Too often feelings of hopelessness break me and steal my smile. I continue to try though, but it has been tough.
Now I will prepare my list of resolutions for 2012 and plan to give my best effort to be successful on each one.