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calvin-hobbes-new-years-resolutionsHere we go again.

As the days dwindle down to a precious few, we ponder the past year and set our sights upon the future.

Poetic ain’t I?

Well we do.

Jan over at Yearning for God posted a good idea on Facebook a few days ago. It’s this: get yourself a jar of your choice of at least quart size. Then whenever something especially nice happens–the test results were good, you got a great gift, your plumbing bill was not nearly as bad as you expected–whatever, write it down on a piece of paper and put it in the jar.

At the end of the year–like now–you open and read. Kind of puts the year into perhaps a better perspective I suspect.

As to the future.

Well we all, make resolutions though many of us, (myself included) don’t formally write them down since its way too depressing. Depressing you ask? Why yes, I answer. For we all make essentially the same list. First and foremost is to lose weight. Then get in shape. Drink less, stop smoking, be kinder to people, spend more time meditating, reading, or engaging nature. Finish the book, the quilt, the landscaping, the cookbook assemblage. Have I pretty much covered MOST of the shit on your list?

And what do they have in common for the most part?

They are vices we are trying to overcome, or inertia which is the bane of humanity. Get off your duff and attend to business. Stop sitting in front of the computer/TV and ACCOMPLISH something for God’s sake.

Why we do this is well, part of the human psychic haywire we all experience. We are gonna die. And depending on what you believe, we are still not gonna be here. It matters little WHAT legacy or lack of same we leave behind. We will either be utterly unaware of it because we are DEAD, nor can we have the peace of mind of knowing that even though we don’t KNOW, we KNOW we must have been appreciated, because we are DEAD, or if we are eternal in some fashion as many of us believe, well we will undoubtedly be busy doing other unearthly things.

So accomplishing anything is pretty much for no good reason other than we feel better when we do. It is strange and stupid really. I work so much harder now that we are officially retired in New Mexico. I am on the go almost every day for 6-8 straight hours, doing chores and such. Yet I have this amazing sense of accomplishment each day, and am very satisfied in my tired bones.

This makes no sense I realize. Yet I prefer doing this than sitting passively throughout the day playing computer games and watching soap operas.

We all do this throughout life, we must admit. We work to have a nicer house, live in a better neighborhood, have more things to play with during the diminishing time of “leisure.” We read stuff that is not particularly entertaining, because we want to learn, though I rather doubt that in the grave or afterlife, we will have use for all that knowledge we have acquired.

Now that I have gotten you sufficiently depressed, I’ll point out that the more “useful” we are and the more we know, the more we like ourselves, and the happier we feel. As I said, danged if I know why, but it seems to be the case, so I can see no useful reason to discontinue the process.

The end of year is also a time of assessment. Part of looking at the past year is to put things in perspective. And to devise better ways of doing what you didn’t do so well. One thing I’ve learned is something that monks and contemplatives are quite good at. And that is being in the moment and being engaged in what you are doing. I don’t know why this is, but doing even the most mundane of tasks SEEMS to go better when I pay attention to it, rather than try to divert my head with music or internal musings to “pass the time.”

The TIME you are passing is YOUR LIFE. So I think it makes some sense to pay attention to it.

Anyway, I have some goals for next year. After exercising for a full nine hours a week more than I used to, I still find that I have lost no weight. I know I have a good deal more muscle now, and muscle weighs more than fat, but good lord in heaven, a few pounds wouldn’t be so much to ask would it? I can’t do vegan, but I can increase fruits and veggies and reduce my meat intake. So I’m going to work on that a bit.

I fritter away entirely too much time on the computer. I’m going to try to spend more time on crafts and reading that I have so far.

That’s about it.

I’m pretty darn perfect, there’s very little left to do.

Can’t you tell?