Wednesday, January 4, 2012

New Year's Resolutions? Aww Man...

As of writing this post, I am 96 hours into 2012 (or 2013, depending on if you jumped on the #skip2012 bandwagon), and I've already broken a handful of my New Year's Resolutions. Thing is, I'm a man, and men do not take the blame for these kind of things. And, as a man, I'm going to pass the blame to the true crime here: the idea of resolutions in the first place.

I am an adventurer at heart. I take the leap and ask questions later (unless I'm talking to a girl), and for the most part that strategy has lead me to some pretty amazing and unpredictable places. It's a good philosophy to live by...just not forever, though. I'll get back to that later.

Adventurers are people who don't make excuses to do something. Often, they just do it. Their motives might differ from person to person. I've done crazy things for the fame and fortune, and I've also done some pretty amazing things in the name of science and discovery. It doesn't matter what it is though, because once that curiosity is placed in the mind of an adventurer, eventually he or she will do something about it.

And that takes me back to the idea of a 'resolution'. Every year people come up with that list of things they are going to do to improve their life. It's a very romantic idea: once that clock strikes midnight, you are somehow absolved of your old not-so-awesome self. You now are the person who goes to the gym 4 times a week, or eats healthy, or donates time to the local animal shelter. 

Thing is, you shouldn't need an excuse to change your life for the better. If you've wanted to do these things before, why didn't you start back in August when you thought about them? Think less, do more. Makes sense, right?

But this isn't a post that is suppose to chastise you on how your resolutions suck. No, this is about me and how I suck. I spent the last 3 paragraphs bashing people who make resolutions, yet I drank the Kool-Aid just as much as everyone else did. I've been doing it for years: on December 31st, I write a list of things I want to accomplish or do in the next year. It's often long and crazy and, like most people, I only get through a handful of them. The rest...well, I fail them miserably. Usually it takes me a year to fail so epically, but 2012 is a special case. 

Here's the short list of 'resolutions' that I've failed to keep in the past 96 hours:
  1. Stop drinking Coke. Yea, right...this was destined to fail. I wrote a love letter on this blog to Coca Cola.
  2. Exercise 4 times a week. Does Skyrim count?
  3. Stop forgetting things at home or at work.
  4. Staying happy all the time.
  5. Cutting back on coffee.
  6. Stop hitting the 'snooze' button.
  7. Stop putting my underwear on backwards. Damn you Hanes! Where's the tag??
And here's the short list of 'resolutions' that I haven't failed yet, but will fail in the near future.
  1. Cutting back on video games. Mass Effect 3? Wii U? I need a higher paying job.
  2. Writing on a bi-weekly basis. I love writing, but sometimes you go through dry spells that produce nothing but lists of resolutions you've failed and rants about crap you carry in your backpack.
  3. Stop cursing. I play too much Mario Kart for that...
  4. Visit Antarctica. Turns out, it's expensive. And cold. I'll get there eventually though, don't you worry.
  5. Get a girl to fall in love with me. It's not that I have a self-confidence issue. It's more like I have a blog dedicated to a ratty old orange sweater, and all the things that it stands for. That screams maturity, doesn't it?
Hey bro...did you hear about my new 401k compensation package? Hold on, I'll explain after I'm done pretending that this Landrover is a chariot.

Here's the thing though: I've learned, in all of my 23 years of worldly wisdom, that resolutions don't take into account all the crazy things you'll be doing while you're busy living. All the amazing and life-changing events in my life have, for the most part, been unplanned. You don't plan on learning how to appreciate life. It just happens, whether it be in a moment of extreme joy or, in my case, surviving a car accident that I should have died in. You can't plan on seeing elephants in the wild or getting kissed by a random stranger celebrating Songkran. You sure as hell can't plan on meeting the love of your life...jease, have you ever seen Sleepless in Seattle?

So when you're making (or breaking) your resolutions, keep that in mind. Life happens when you're making other plans. That doesn't mean you can't prepare to receive all the gifts and experiences life has to offer you. Work on making you the best 'you' that you can be. For me, that comes with traveling. Right now, I have places to see and things to do. Cambodia in 11 days, Europe in the summer, and beyond...I have a lot on my plate. I'm getting them in while I'm young so that, when it does come time for me to settle down, I'll welcome it with open arms. I'll probably stumble out of pure exhaustion, but it'll be so worth it.

Plus, after all is said and done, I'll have a beaten up orange sweater to show for it. That's way better than any resolution I could ever make.

1 comment:

  1. This reminds me of a Josh Radin lyric: "I don't mind the wait, it's fine; as long as you know it's the wait that could be the something." We all spend too much time trying to think of ways to make ourselves better when all we need to do is enjoy life and become better. Or as you put it: think less, do more. <3