Thursday, January 1, 2009

I Resolve NOT to Resolve

So we survived 2008 and New Year's Eve [even the bricked-up zune owners] and now we encounter the awkwardness of New Year's Resolutions. Every year some of us find a part of ourselves we want to better [loathe] and we  confidently make a declaration of change. Unfortunately many of us just set ourselves up for failure and thus add one more thing to loathe [want to better]. Wikipedia, the foremost authority on factual information, reports that NYR's have a success rate of 12%. That means 88% of us suck! Even Dubya has a higher approval rating, which should tell you something.

Since I am firmly embedded in the 88%, I am choosing this year to forego Resolutions and set INTENTIONS instead. You say: What's the difference? I say: Thanks for asking. It's a subtle difference but enough to not make me feel like the under-acheiver I don't want to be. Resolution comes from Resolve which means to "come to a definite or earnest decision." [plug: Dictionary.com] And therein lies the problem: "definite" has such a ring of finality to it; it's so black and white; pass or fail; no room for grading on the curve.

Intention [sweet flexible Intention] comes from Intend which means to "have in mind as something to be done or brought about; a plan." Now here we find room for success! I can have plenty in mind; I can draw up plans til the break of dawn; no pass or fail, but 'A' for effort-my kind of grading. Allow me to be metaphysical on you for a moment and share a fundamental idea held by many: whatever we hold in our consciousness (i.e. our mind) are the things we will experience. If you think about it that way, intentions should offer a better success rate than resolutions [no Wiki stats on that]. 

I know what you're thinking: What are my intentions for 2009? Thought you'd never ask. Here are the top 5 [only five because my mind can hold a lot more (maybe seven) but frankly the rest are none of your business-feel the luv]:
5. I intend to cultivate and sustain meaningful friendships [held over from last year-it worked so well I figured I'd keep it going-shout out to all new 2008 friends...and previous friends too].
4. I intend to buy drums and join a band [a once forgotten dream come back to haunt me-remember, just a plan].
3. I intend to devote more time to my spiritual life [figured since I'm a minister in training it couldn't hurt].
2. I intend to be a better husband and father [I'm fairly awesome as it is (shhh...just read, don't argue), but always room for improvement I think]
1. I intend to do more things that nurture me as an individual [and as a result I can do 2. thru 5. a whole lot better].

So free yourself of the shackles and pressures of Resolutions and find true liberation on the Isle of Intention. What will your intentions for the new year be?


Wonder-Rachel said...

I never make New Years resolutions for two reasons.

First, I share your ideas about the futility of resolutions.

Second, it seems everyone's resolution is to lose weight and that's always what pops into my head when I wonder what I should resolve. But since I weigh like... a buck-oh-five, losing weight isn't high up on my list of priorities so I can never think of a good resolution till a couple weeks in and then I feel like I've missed the deadline.

I firmly believe in the power of intention however and very much like the intentions idea so I'll have to think of some intentions and get back to you.

wakati said...

I intend to restore my body to good health and vitality.

I'm not one for resolutions either, but this year I have an elaborate scheme to work on my body. I'm tracking it at my new blog, slimspirited.

This one you have access to:-)

To intentions!