Tuesday, January 3, 2012

New Year...Resolution?

I didn't make a list of new year's resolutions for 2012. Why does this sound like a shameful confession? Because I'm breaking a tradition, an unspoken law, a rite deemed necessary to bring in the new year and get my life in order? Well, I already broke the tradition of being sad after the holidays, and I must "confess" I neither ate twelve grapes at midnight nor made twelve wishes either.

Instead, I made another type of resolution: to not have one day so important over the others that it be deemed the only one allowed to witness resolutions. Every morning should be a time of resolutions, not once a year.

I'm not discrediting the idea of resolutions--they inspire change and typically stem from honest and noble intentions. I'm discrediting, rather, our approach to them. We seem to forget that every day is essentially the beginning of a new year, or better put, a new life. Every morning that we are graced with life, we are given a clean slate on which not only to write our resolutions but to live them out.

A wonderful friend gave me the book The Cloister Walk by Kathleen Norris. In it, the author writes about the writing process as a metaphor for life itself.

"To keep bearing fruit one must keep returning, humbly, to the blank page, to the uncertainty of the writing process, and not pay much heed to the “noted author” the world wants you to be," she writes.

To keep bearing fruit, to keep growing, we must return, humbly, to our roots each day, to the uncertainty of the life we are living, the decisions that will plague us each moment, and not pay much heed to the "yearly resolutions" the world wants us to make, but to the daily ones we make for ourselves.

As another example from Norris simply states: We should, rather, say everyday to ourselves, "Today."