Saturday, December 29, 2007

Resolutions past

Before I post this year's resolutions, I thought I'd take stock of previous years'. I make resolutions twice a year, now and at the start of academic years. Let's see how I did.

According to this post from 2004, recording resolutions for 2005, I wanted to do the following:
1. Walk at least 30 minutes per day (may be substituted with other exercise)
2. Write at least a page a day.
3. Cut my debt in half. Ideally, I'd eliminate it, but I think that's unrealistic.
That first one has been a perennial item on the list. The desire to exercise in some form or another comes up almost every 6 months on this blog. Earlier this month, I started walking--running even--but then weather and/or illness have prevented me from being outside and/or mobile for a couple of weeks now. I've decided that trying to exercise every day is crazy. If I miss a day, I feel horrible and that's just counterproductive. Three to four times a week is more reasonable. I can almost always do something on both weekend days and that just leaves two days during the week to squeeze in time. I obsess about this for two reasons. One, I've gained about 15 pounds over the last couple of years. Two, I'm not getting any younger. I really do want to be in decent shape as I age.

Two and three are pretty moot. I'd like to get back maybe to writing for fun (besides here), but I'm not sure if I'm ready to add that to my life. The debt is more than cut in half, but not eliminated. It seems likely that I could do that this year, but it's not a top priority.

One new year and one academic year saw finishing the dissertation at the top of the list. There are some other interesting things on that academic year list: taking hikes, going to kid events, quitting the inadequacy schtick. I've done okay on the second and third items, but the first, not so much. I might be able to add that this year. January 2007 was also a year of interesting resolutions. Family game night didn't pan out. We did plenty of stuff as a family, but it wasn't always game night Date nights worked out pretty well also, especially after the dissertation was handed in. And work is, well, work. I'll have more to say about that later.

Most recently, of course, I made another set of academic year resolutions. I still think I could work on relaxing. I'm planning some meditation or something. The exercise, of course, a struggle. Publishing something--I think that's going to happen. We'll see.

So, I've kept a few resolutions, missed others, but haven't let failure hinder me from continuing to put them on the list. A quick Google search brings up some interesting articles on how to keep resolutions and/or set goals for the coming year. I like the idea from this article of setting mini goals each month that are part of the greater goal. I especially like this post from lifehack.org, which suggests doing what I just did--looking back at past resolutions and seeing what didn't work and why. What resolutions have you not kept and why? What's on your list for this year?