Since the end of 2017, I've been thinking a lot about writing a resolutions post. I've been reading everyone else's posts, in which they talk about their goals of saving X dollars or losing Y pounds, and I've been thinking I should do that too. But as I read these posts and think about writing my own, I find myself paralyzed by the fact that I have no idea what to resolve.
My challenge with resolutions is twofold. First, I am not a person to make a resolution for the sake of doing so. If I commit to doing something, it has to be because I believe that doing so is going to make me happier or is somehow going to make me a better person/make the world a better place. Second, I am really, really bad at keeping resolutions. Like my recurrent resolution to exercise. A look at my last post about exercise shows that it starts with a paragraph bemoaning my failures:
"Oh exercise, how I struggle with you. With just a quick look through
the blog, it's easy to find multiple posts in which I'm either
committing to exercising more or lamenting the fact that I've failed at
exercising more (see here, here, here, here, and here for just a few examples). It's not a habit that comes easily to me."
I worry that committing to anything, especially exercise, will inevitably lead to me writing a follow up post in a month or two talking about how miserably I've failed at my commitment. Which makes me ask the question, why do I feel like I need to write a resolution post?
While part of this feeling is just the feeling that I should be doing what everyone else is doing, I think another part of it is a desire to create some sort of...shape in my life. I feel like I'm in a phase in life in which I go to work, pay off debt, save for retirement, learn a few more words of French, and keep repeating ad nauseam. I'm 7-10 years away from hitting FIRE, and I will likely keep working even when I reach FIRE, so this is not going to be a short phase. There is an incredible monotony to this stage, and I wonder if I could somehow break up the monotony with a resolution. 2018 will be the year that I become a true minimalist/ban all shopping/run a marathon...something other than just the year in which I keep going to work every day and slowly trudge forward with life.
Hmmm. This post is turning out much darker than I had expected. Maybe because I'm alone on a Friday night and it's -26C outside and I drank a glass of Malbec before I started writing? Maybe because I got word that a longtime patient of mine died yesterday, and I can't quite believe that he's gone, so the sadness that I haven't yet allowed myself to feel is coming out in other ways?
There is part of me that is longing desperately for a solution to this. To be able to say that I am going to do X in 2018 and everything is going to be perfect. But maybe life doesn't work that way. Maybe it's harder than we all like to pretend it is, and we can't solve everything with a resolutions post.