On one hand, the new year is completely arbitrary. A farce. The calendar is manufactured by man, just a way for us to keep track of things, to force order and organization onto our random lives.

On the other hand, we grow up thinking of time in this very particular way. It becomes real by virtue of our believing in it, obeying it, structuring our days around it.

On one hand, new year resolutions are silly. If we want to improve, why wait till Jan 1? Why not start right now, this very instant, no matter what day or month it is?

On the other hand, there’s something to be said for a fresh start, a clean slate. Something to be said for using those numbers and boxes to create a schedule, a plan. Something to be said for being part of a larger group — a community of sorts — all of us striving to improve in some way.

I go back and forth (obviously) on resolutions. Some years I make them, some years I don’t. This year, I’m not laying out any concrete, specific goals, but I AM focusing on a theme.

What exactly that theme should be, I haven’t decided yet. But the idea is for it to be something that can trickle down through all my actions, in all aspects of my life.

A few possibilities:

In an ideal world, I’d do all of these, all the time. But I’m human, and these things don’t come naturally to me, so I’ve got to tackle them one at a time. Build them up until they are ingrained habits. Then move on to the next.

So that’s what I’ve been thinking about as I reflect on the year past and set expectations for the year to come. What about you?

9 responses to “Reflecting on resolutions”

  1. T. S. Bazelli Avatar

    I like a routine, making things habit, and I try to adjust as I go, but its still nice to stat a new year. I feel good about this one!

    My goals are all mostly the same as usual. Write things. Finish things. Try not to stress out, and be patient ;) This year I hope to be happier about the small things. Happy 2013 Kristan!

  2. Trisha Avatar

    That’s alot of hands.

  3. Sarah Wedgbrow Avatar

    I’m too changeable to stick to resolutions, but I’m always working on being the best version of myself. Bangarang!

  4. Juliann Wetz Avatar

    Good resolutions, I think. I’ve kept mine simple this year. I just want to take better care of myself. I can’t say I’m off to the best start, but at least it’s foremost in my mind. Eventually it will stick. (I hope!)

  5. Julia Avatar

    I don’t tend to think of them as resolutions so much as plans. Sometimes I stick to the plan. Sometimes I don’t. This year, I plan to add colour to my beige life. Starting with the walls of my house. Oh, and I plan to be taller.

  6. Kristan Avatar

    Hehe, I like routine too. But sometimes it’s good for outside forces to shake things up a bit, lest I get too comfortable. Also, I’m stealing your resolutions!

    Riley lent me some of his. ;)


    That’s a good one. Good luck!

    I love color. :) Btw if you figure out the taller thing, let me know!

  7. Sonje Avatar

    I’ve always liked New Year’s resolutions and pretty much always made them. Sometimes there are Big Intentions and sometimes small, but I usually come up with something. Not this year. My life is in flux, and I’m just waiting around to see where the chips fall, not trying to push things one way or another; the forces at work are too strong to be messed with by the likes of me.

  8. Jon Avatar

    I actually like that the New Year falls right about now. It gives me a little hope in the middle of winter. Spring, and rebirth can’t be too far off.

    Good luck on the resolutions. You have the right ones. That “Don’t Worry What Other People Think” is a big one for me, but I’ve never been very good at following through on that.

  9. Kristan Avatar

    “the forces at work are too strong to be messed with by the likes of me.” Heh, I like that. Wishing you the best…

    I think it’s one of the hardest things for artists. After all, we’re trying to connect with people through our work; of course we care what they think. But sometimes that hinders the making of the work…

    Anyway. I like your perspective about New Year’s being a bit of hope/spark of life in the middle winter. (Although I personally like winter quite a bit.)