Hump Day: Go ahead! Make New Year’s resolutions!

Hump Day
By Brian Cormier
Wednesday, Dec. 29, 2016
Moncton Times & Transcript

Well, it’s hard to believe, but the Christmas music is gone from radio stations and retailers, and decorations are slowly coming down around town as the days are getting longer – finally! The year is on its last legs as it crawls toward its final hours as Baby New Year is waiting patiently outside for 12 a.m. on Jan. 1 to arrive.

The period between Christmas and New Year’s Day – what we commonly call “the holidays” – is one of the stranger times of the year. The people who don’t like Christmas are thrilled that it’s over – and those who love Christmas are depressed that it’s over. Meanwhile, everyone else is too full and broke to care.

The holidays can be exhausting, can’t they? And don’t even talk about the spending. I think I actually heard my poor little credit card scream as I pushed it into a payment terminal. ‘No! Not again! Have pity! Christmas may be fun for you, but it’s not the greatest time for me, buster! Now, buy me some lotion for all this chafing – and pay with cash!’

We spend too much. We eat too much. We drink too much. We don’t sleep enough. No wonder we’re exhausted afterwards! After the tinsel is packed away for another year and we all start eating salad again, however, January is the perfect time to sit down and start thinking about that dreaded “R” word: resolutions!

Now, many people feel that resolutions are actually bad things. We’re just setting ourselves up for failure, they say. Or we’re just making resolutions because everyone else is. Or… whatever. Some people are so negative that it’s difficult to get them to think positively about anything, let alone their future.

Here’s the thing about resolutions, at least in my humble opinion. Even if you fail at 90 per cent of them, well guess what? You succeeded at 10 per cent! That may not sound like much, but what if becoming a millionaire was that 10 per cent? I’d say that was a pretty good return.

Don't let anyone convince you that making New Year's resolutions is a bad idea. In fact, beware of those who don't want you to improve!
Don’t let anyone convince you that making New Year’s resolutions is a bad idea. In fact, beware of those who don’t want you to improve!

“Resolved to get rid of that stubborn rash on my toe. Failed. Resolved to remember to never leave the house again with the water still running in the sink. Failed. Resolved to eat more kale. Failed. Resolved to find out what kale is. Failed.” I’m sure that if most of your resolutions didn’t pan out except for one major one, then that would at least be something positive, correct? They say money doesn’t buy happiness, but it sure makes misery a lot more enjoyable, doesn’t it?

I’m all about making resolutions. Be it fall, spring or the beginning of a new year, these season and calendar changes are new beginnings. Spring is when new things come to life. Fall is when a new school year starts. January is the debut of 12 glorious months ahead of exciting opportunities. Just pick a date, make your plans and go!

Write down some dreams. Get excited. Make a plan. Get even more excited. And if someone tells you not to bother, do it anyway. Clearly, they’re not someone with your best interests at heart. Now, a little disclaimer here: if you’re planning on being the first person to jump off a 20-storey building without a parachute and survive, perhaps you should listen to the naysayers around you. Anything with consequences unrelated to possible death, though, are worthwhile pursuing as long as they don’t hurt others.

A new year is an exciting time. On Jan. 1 at 12 a.m., the pages in our book of life are wiped clean. Many of us just start from there, though, and wander along aimlessly for the next 12 months with no plan just taking what life throws at us from left and right. Now, I’m not suggesting having a plan for every second of every day – but it would be a good thing to kind of know where you’re going. Either you can sail into the wind with strength and determination, or you can be thrown onto to rocks just like any other shipwrecks in choppy waters who lost their way.

I may talk a good talk, but I can certainly use more practice in the planning department, and I will be making a number of resolutions for 2017. Some will be big. Others will be small. Some will fail. Some will succeed.

Either way, though, at the end of 2017, I want to look back at the year that has just ended and know that despite some failures, I ended the year in the plus column.

I truly hope 2017 is good to you. Happy New Year!

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