Daily Prompt Post: Resolved

Today’s Daily Prompt asks:  

Have you ever made a New Year’s Resolution that you kept?

Yes, I have.  I feel like I am a work in progress and every year I think of areas of my life where I feel there is room for improvement.  Not everything is something over which I have control, however.  For instance, I am currently unemployed.  I can resolve to be employed by this time next year and that would be foolish because my being employed is not solely determined by my actions.  I can’t even resolve to apply to more jobs than I did the previous year because how many jobs I apply to is contingent upon how many jobs for which I am qualified are listed.

So what about “Lose 10 lbs by the end of the year”?  That certainly seems within my power of control.  But is it really?  If I get on the scale at the end of the year and I’ve only lost 2 lbs did I simply not “keep” my resolution?  Did I fail?  

I don’t think so.  Not if I made conscious and healthier dietary choices throughout the year.  Not if I drank more water and exercised more consistently.  Not if I made an effort to do the right thing for my body.  

What if, instead of losing a mere 2 lbs I actually gained weight?  Surely that would mean I failed, right?  

The problem here is in the concept.  Keeping a resolution does not mean fulfilling it.  Life is complicated and the best laid plans of mice and men often go awry, to paraphrase Robert Burns.  The best of intentions–to lose weight, to drink more water, to read a book or ten–can be waylaid by circumstances beyond your control.

Or my control, anyway.  Do I keep my resolutions?  Absolutely.  Do I fulfill them?  Not always.  Sometimes.  I hold my resolutions, the intentions I make to myself, loosely.  I know where I would like to be by this time next year but I have little control over the end result.  All I can do is focus on today and make choices today that will take me a step closer to fulfilling my resolutions for this year.

Today I will spend time studying.  Today I will spend time reading.  Today I will find an app for my iPod that will help me track my diet and exercise.  BTW, I’m looking for recommendations for an app so you if have one you use and can recommend, I would love to know what it is.  Thanks!

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I am only responsible for the choices I make today.  And trust me, I’ve learned enough about myself to know that the choices I make today may be very different from the ones I make tomorrow.  I can only resolve to do my best with what I am given from one day to the next.

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