Hereís the deal. Each year, thousands, no millions of U.S. citizens take a pledge on Dec. 31, to do something different with their lives, beginning the following day.
For some, the thought of transitioning their tubular and somewhat oddly-shaped bodies into a temple of health and muscular fitness is a noble gesture. One that, according to them, will begin as soon as the clock strikes midnight and that well-lit ball drops over Times Square in New York.
For others, the thought of a healthy New Yearís resolution is something that theyíve considered for a long time, but kept putting off until the right time ó New Yearís Day is the right time. The perfect starting point, if you will.
Yet still, there are others who have resisted the urge to make a New Yearís resolution because they just simply hate to put forth the effort to keeping it.
Iíll tell you first and foremost, I do not make resolutions.
If asked in which category I should be included, Iíll probably say the last one. I know that there are things that I need to do for the improvement of my health and social status. However, I would rather take the path less traveled and just do them without calling them resolutions.
For instance, I need to go back to college.
Each year, I have the intention of enrolling in school to finish a degree that continues to elude me. Each year, beginning in November, I say that I will enroll in the spring semester and continue the course. After all, all I need is to get it started, then it becomes an obsession with me (thatís one of the traits of having obsessive compulsive disorder). But each year, the first week of January rolls around and I am still here at the Paraglide, grinding away, saying I will enroll later this year. This has been a five-year process and itís time for change.
I need to eat healthier.
This one is a bit more challenging, since I live alone and hate buying groceries. If you were to look in my fridge right now, there are probably a cactus plant, and a few tumbleweeds that blow in between the old salad dressing bottles. I can cook, but I donít like cooking, especially cooking for one. Something has to give.
I need to do more for myself and place less emphasis on pleasing other friends, Family members and co-workers.
I have always had a strong protective gene, especially when it comes to Family. I would rather suffer than see my Family struggle. To some, that may not seem like a bad thing, but it really is ó especially when your Family members or loved ones donít feel the same about you. Family members, co-workers, friends, are all people whom I hold dear. However, in 2014, I need to create ďTeam Reg,Ē or become a ďReggie of OneĒ (to steal a former Army theme). I celebrated my 47th birthday in November. A few days later, while reflecting, I realized that I am three years from 50 and I do not know what happiness is! My apologies to those who will soon be affected, but if Iím not happy, I canít make you all happy!
I need to be more active in the community by committing to more social obligations. I have been negligent in contributing to the community. Even something like coaching little league football or signing on as a mentor would suffice. Now for those of you reading this, it does not mean you can approach me about joining the organization of your choice (please read the paragraph above ó if I ainít happy, nobodyís happy). Iíll consider the details.
And lastly, I need to appreciate myself more, instead of waiting for validation from others.
Since I was a child, I have always wanted others to care for me or acknowledge my accomplishments and achievements. In most instances, that didnít happen. Even as a young budding football player, whose best game included 125 yards on seven carries, no one was there to cheer for me. No Family, no friends, no mother or father just my teammates and coaches. Try explaining your performance to the Family during Sunday dinner at grandmotherís. It was as if it never happened. When I graduated from basic training, there was no Family who traveled to Fort Benning, Ga. to witness my transition into the military life. Even through my progression from the rank of private to sergeant first class and my retirement after 22 years of service. There I stood Ö alone.
So now, I say since I never had your validation for the first 47 years of my life. I certainly donít need it now. Itís time for me to soar, feel free to watch my flight.
It could be said that I am bitter about the hand life has dealt. Iím not. Instead of accepting and playing the cards that God handed me, I wasted precious time shuffling the deck. Now itís time to play my hand.
The moral of this commentary is this: Resolutions are not necessary. What is necessary is the action that you take to improve your life or achieve the goals you set.