Calvin & Hobbes borrowed with respect from Keysmashblog.com

Calvin & Hobbes borrowed with respect from Keysmashblog.com

A new year means a new post dissing resolutions. I believe I’ve written one of these every year since I started blogging—it’s one of my favorite New Year traditions!

If you haven’t already figured it out, I’m not a proponent of resolutions. They are evil, negative constructs—harbingers of defeat. This is especially true of resolutions which involve giving up a pleasure like caffeine, the occasional spa day, or dare I say it—chocolate? Why are New Year’s resolutions so wicked? Because they build failure into our fresh start; they corrupt our second (third or fourth or fifth) chance to get it right.

Example: If on January 1, 2014, you resolve to give up refined sugar and on January 2, you succumb to the undeniable charms of a salted caramel macaron, you’ve broken your resolution. There are three hundred and sixty three days left in the new year and you are already a failure. How cruel! How unforgiving!

The Ladurée Salted Caramel Macaron — Archangeli/Flickr

The Ladurée Salted Caramel Macaron — Archangeli/Flickrcc

That’s why instead of New Year’s resolutions, I advocate goals. Goals are personal contracts with objectives but without a resolution’s relentless promise of a crash and burn.  If my goal is to stop eating refined sugar (not going to happen), and I indulge in the Ladurée macron above (yes!), I have not failed. Oh, I’ve experienced a setback to be sure, but my goal is still attainable.

Goals allow us to visualize success in realistic stages rather than in one giant unattainable, leap. When we’re able to imagine success, it becomes real. It becomes possible. Here are my goals, writing and beyond, for 2014.

1. Complete CRYING FOR MERCY.

2. Self-publish BLOOD UNDER WILL.

3. Find more time to read. Reading is essential to becoming a better writer. I read fifty books last year. My goal for 2014 is to double that number.

4. Give more – in all ways.

5. Guard against regret. It’s been seeping into my thoughts lately, and there’s nothing more crippling.

What are your goals, or if you’re braver than I,
resolutions for 2014?
Go ahead, share! Swear I won’t tell.

LadyDragonflyCC - >;</flickrcc

LadyDragonflyCC – >;</flickrcc

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Hope to see you all on Wednesday for IWSG!

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