In just a few days we will turn the page to another year. What lies ahead for each of us remains to be seen. One thing is certain: That on Jan. 1, 2007 we will become a new person and make all sorts of resolutions to be “better.”
Maybe this is the year to think these resolutions through before just rattling off the same top 10 as everyone else. Instead of “I resolve to loose 10 pounds” and get fit, what about deciding to give 10 pounds of food to the local food bank every quarter. If we carried the 10 pounds of donated food to the car, then to the food-donations centers, perhaps we would get some exercise walking, make others happy by allowing them to eat enough to avoid health problems and get a bit “fitter” along the way.
That takes care of numbers 2, 3, and 9 on the list.
Next up — or really number 1 on the Google site — was spending more time with family and friends. For many people this isn’t necessary. They are always with their families and keep in close touch with friends. Could you expand the list to spending time with people unable to leave their homes for one reason or another? Perhaps become a Big Brother or Sister to someone who needs a friend?
As for some of the other resolutions, giving up smoking, drinking less and getting financial affairs in order are numbers 4, 6 and 7. If you combined all three, you might be on the way to better financial and physical shape.
Then there is the old standby- get organized. That should be high on my list, but I have decided that organization is highly overrated. I do know where to find just about everything I need. It is when I set out to clean my desk, organize the files and straighten out the drawers that I lose things, never to show up again. So what needs organization? My time, perhaps. Do we waste time trying to do things because we think others expect us to? What is it about cleaning the kitchen floor right before a party? Where do people go — right to the kitchen, so spill something as the first person walks in and no one will know you spent the extra hour doing what you wanted to do instead of washing the floor.
Instead of cleaning, toss a few things away. If someone admires a knickknack, offer it to them now, not later. Give the family heirlooms away while you can enjoy the giving. No, not the things that mean so much to you, but things that you look at but never see. Organization is different for everyone. Do what is best for you.
Finally we have items 5 and 8. Essentially enjoy life more and learn something new. Wish we could eliminate the stress. That would allow more time to enjoy life, but if you look at each day as a gift, find something to do that you enjoy. Don’t just exist, learn to live for yourself. As for learning something new, why not? If you try it and don’t like doing it, put it aside then move on.
In the end, make your resolutions work for you. For now, may the coming year be peaceful, healthy and filled with enough pleasure to keep you happy.
We welcome 2007; may it be good to all of you.
Susan Schwarz is the director of Dracut’s Moses Greeley Parker Library.