As I thought about my resolutions for the coming year, I wondered where the tradition of creating resolutions began and why it was a thing that humans continue to do. Of course, I never actually got to finding that answer because ADHD and the open internet are a perfect solution for learning all the things you never actually intended to know. I meandered over to Merriam-Webster and found this paragraph on the entry for synonyms of “resolution” and I decided I like everything about this so much better than all the standard resolution nonsense.
Synonym Discussion of resolution
courage, mettle, spirit, resolution, tenacity mean mental or moral strength to resist opposition, danger, or hardship. courage implies firmness of mind and will in the face of danger or extreme difficulty. ⟨the courage to support unpopular causes⟩ mettle suggests an ingrained capacity for meeting strain or difficulty with fortitude and resilience. ⟨a challenge that will test your mettle⟩ spirit also suggests a quality of temperament enabling one to hold one’s own or keep up one’s morale when opposed or threatened. ⟨her spirit was unbroken by failure⟩ resolution stresses firm determination to achieve one’s ends. ⟨the resolution of pioneer women⟩ tenacity adds to resolution implications of stubborn persistence and unwillingness to admit defeat. ⟨held to their beliefs with great tenacity⟩
Wow. Everything in that paragraph describes qualities I’ve witnessed this year in friends, family, and strangers. This year has been a painful one. It has been a year requiring more of those qualities than many of us can muster up. And so as I go into 2018, I am not going to make myself a list of strict, unwavering goals aimed at perfection. I will never make it to the gym. The books on my reading list that I actually complete will probably be in the single digits. The New Year New Me that I want to focus on will look like this:
- Exercising my voice: Saying no to social exhaustion, to arguments that will never be productive, to things that will make my anxiety go on a rampage. Speaking and writing about my knowledge, experiences, successes, failures, expertise. Calling out injustice.
- Reading things that make me feel good. I love young adult fiction. I love it so, so much. I also love chick-lit in spite of the awful name. I love reading beautiful story books with my son. I love reading feminist literature. I do not love spending hours of every day reading dozens of news articles about the latest hideous thing tweeted by Tr*mp. In the past year I’ve slowly turned off news notifications on my phone, unsubscribed from clickbaity emails, and setting up browser things to block triggering subjects from my internet life. I’ve realized I can absolutely be a well-rounded citizen of the world- and a decidedly better one- if I cut back my news consumption to getting the details once every few days. If something mega super wild happens, somebody will probably let me know.
- Organizing my life: I do not have anything cute to say about this. I really do need to organize my life because uhhh running a business? It’s hard. And if in the coming year I want to be able to start hiring people and working on events I should prooooobably have my shit together. I bought a clipboard today, so that’s a start!
- Decluttering and throwing away: guilt about being an imperfect mother, guilt about being an imperfect woman, performative lady-magic, toxic people (I will be writing more about this soon!), toxic thoughts, anxiety-brain telling me things I should be doing. This will probably be the hardest one, but I’ll document it and keep y’all updated if you want!
Last selfie of the year! I’m into it. Catch you in 2018, kids.