Some Resolutions I Can Keep

Every year, most adults start making their New Year’s resolutions at about 11:59 pm on New Year’s Eve. Sure, some people put a lot more thought into the resolution process, but for most of us, this is a gut-level decision made under the influence of the impending New Year (and perhaps some alcohol). We all make New Year’s resolutions like quitting smoking, spending more time with family, or eating less junk food. Even though our resolutions may become somewhat elastic as the year trudges on, we probably all write pretty much the same ones. And, for the most part, most of them fall by the wayside by January 15th. Trying to carry out resolutions is like trying to lose weight while you’re sitting in a Dairy Queen – it’s tempting to reach for that ice cream, just like it’s tempting to go back to your old behaviors.

So, this year, I’ve decided to only make resolutions that I can keep. This way, I’ll feel good about myself (and quite frankly, isn’t that all that matters?). So, without further ado, here’s my list of New Year’s resolutions:

I’m Never Going to Have Six-Pack Abs: I’ve labored under the delusion for the last several years that I can get back to my high school weight while improving on my physique. But, I’ve never had six-pack abs, even when I was working construction and UPS. I guess if I really wanted to work out two or three hours a day, I might be able to do it. But, since I’m already married and working toward our 2.5 kids, I resolve to let the fantasy go and get comfortable with the fact that I’ll never be a sex symbol.

Eat Less Healthy Foods: Tightly coupled with my abs resolution, I resolve to stop eating food that’s good for me that I don’t really like. Every year, I start out with some regimented, concentration camp diet that cuts out all the food I really like (i.e. sweets, salty snacks, hot dogs, and pizza) — and forces me to choke down foods I can’t really stand — (i.e. cottage cheese, rice cakes, and diet frozen dinners). So I’m going to avoid the “yucky” foods this year, and maybe I’ll have a little more self-control with the foods that allow me to put on five pounds over the weekend. At least that’s my theory, and I’m going to stick with it (until I put on another five pounds).

Get Rid of Things I Don’t Use: I think humans may be genetically linked to pack rats in some way, since most people never really throw anything away. I have an attic full of things that I’m never going to use, and some that I never used to begin with. These include exercise equipment, paint sprayers, old clothes, and, for some reason, empty CD cases- lots of empty CD cases. And they are just sitting in boxes in my attic waiting for the day when my wife will open up the box and say, “when are you getting rid of all this.” So, from now on, I’m going to secretly get rid of them by leaving them on people’s doorsteps in the middle of the night.

It is my true hope that I can stick with these resolutions throughout 2006. Since I’ve set the bar so low, it seems entirely possible. And with my anticipated 2006 successes, maybe I’ll get a little more ambitious next year and work for world peace. Or at least put the toilet seat down for my wife.

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