So where to go from here?
Most of you know my thoughts on New Year's Resolutions*: it's a good opportunity to focus on behaviors you want to change, a time to reflect on what's worked - or not worked - in the past, and to draw up some goals you want to aim for in the coming year.
There are a lot of pro-and-con articles about "Why you should--" or "Why you shouldn't--" list some resolutions. Personally, I figure whether I call them resolutions, or challenges, or goals, makes no never-mind. Devising resolutions puts me in a good frame of mind as I scan the landscape of a new year.
Just as there are so many articles about doing them / not doing them, so too are there scads of articles about HOW to develop some resolutions. You're familliar with the SMART goals concept? I think a similar approach for NYR is a sound idea, so I try to do them that way.
Think of an outline, the kind you learned in elementary school (thank you, Mrs Boyle). You have maybe five main categories, and under each you list supporting subheadings, and under each of those (if necessary) you list more details. I see resolutions as the main categories in my map for the year.
Before I set them out, a note: ol' Rabbie Burns had it right when he said "The best laid plans o'mice and men [oft go astray]..." As do those of Sparklers of all sorts. I've had it amply demonstrated to me over the last year just how astray things can go, even when you have contingency and back-up plans in place.
All we can do is the best we can do from where we are, right?
1) Fitness: first, getting back to the gym. I have certain targets I want to achieve, especially in the area of strength training. New this year, anticipating that it will be another year divided between the US and the UK, I'm working on developing a more portable plan that ultimately won't be as "gym reliant" as last year's was.
2) Diet: that went so far off-track last year as to be a dot on the horizon. Getting back on track now is good; staying on track this year is better. To that end, just like the fitness I'm working on a (lifelong) nutritional plan that I can follow regardless of where I travel. I'm also revamping some of my vitamin / mineral / supplement requirements. It's been a while since I looked them over, and a refresher is always good even if nothing changes. But I suspect the vitamin-D will require a bit of an overhaul, so - we shall see.
3) Physical health: ay, caramba! It's become a disaster, as I've missed checks for hypertension, stopped charting daily blood-glucose readings, and bounced between healthy eating and non-healthy eating. The goal is to improve my health this year, and of course Resolutions #1 and #2 will help me get there. I'm setting a couple of number targets (blood pressure, blood sugar) as well.
4) Mental / emotional health: living the stress-free existence - if only! I'm working on setting up a routine that will include some techniques for mini-R&R sessions (meditation, anyone?). This category might in some ways belong at the top of the list, as progress here will color and boost fitness, diet, and over health.
5) The Fun Stuff: if I'm overreaching anywhere, it's here. I've got several irons in the fire, everything from taking a class to adding more genealogy research to volunteer work - and there, in the distance, at the end of the year, what's that I see? Why, MOUSE EARS!
To paraphrase a poet somewhat later than Burns "A [person's] reach should exceed [their] grasp, or what's a heaven for?"
'ave a good 'un, Sparklers - carpe diem!