December 2014


11:09 EST (-05:00 GMT)

In the past, I've written about various New Year's resolutions I've had (see new year's resolutions and 2011 new year's resolutions), and I thought it was a fun thing to do. However, as I look back, I see they're pretty much the same every year…and that's a bit sad and disappointing. So this year, I'm throwing caution to the wind and trying something different. I will not be making any resolutions for this year.

Does that mean I will be giving up on everything and expecting a boring, uninspiring 2015? Certainly not. I intend to work hard to be a good husband and father to my family. I expect I will continue to work at my job to the best of my ability (and of course continue to seek new challenges in the workforce). I fully anticipate a year of progress on my exercise and dietary regimes. I'm sure the coming year will include travel, both business and pleasure. I think it's safe to say a number of days in the new year will be devoted to time spent with family and friends and eating at tasty (and to be sure, some untasty) restaurants. And, I plan to look for the fun and excitement in everything I do in 2015.

But do I need to list these in a "To Do" fashion with little tick boxes next to them? No, I do not. I personally think that's where we so often fall off the proverbial wagon. When we set such high expectations for ourselves, it's damn near impossible for all but the uber A-types to accomplish. Uber B-types like me have a hard time looking at the list and mustering the ambition necessary to accomplish even one resolution, let alone all we typically jot down. Add to that the unrealistic ones that could never be accomplished in a lifetime let alone a year, and you've written the perfect recipe for absolute failure.

I think it's better to go into 2015 with no preconceived notions or ideas of what to expect. It's like waking up on a cold, crisp winter morning and looking out the window and seeing a field filled to the horizon with fresh snow: nothing but pristine white as far as the eye can see. The possibilities are endless: snow angels, snowmen (can anyone say, "Olaf"?), snowballs, snow forts, skiing, skating, staying in bed, sipping hot chocolate in the Jacuzzi. Or perhaps this metaphor would work better for you: it's like opening a brand new pad of unlined paper, and all your colored pencils are sharpened. You can draw anything you want: no guidelines, no plans, just complete and unhindered creative expression. To borrow from a popular movie, "the window is open, so’s that door," so walk in to a brand new year where anything can happen if you want it to.

If you come in without any expectations of what you want to do in the New Year, you won't be disappointed with the accomplishments you do achieve. And when you don't set expectations that are nigh impossible, you realize and—I daresay—appreciate more, the small deeds you do that normally go unnoticed. Who would put on their New Year's resolutions list "Order something different at my favorite restaurant"? But when you're sitting looking over the menu and the server suggests an entrée you never knew they had, let alone considered, you just might find the Foodie's version of nirvana on that plate in front of you. Yes, this just might be the highlight of 2015; but if it weren't on your list to tick off, you'd miss this moment of bliss.

So, all in all, it seems this year I actually have made a New Year's resolution: not to have any more resolutions.

Happy 2015 to everyone, and I hope (as I always do) that it will be even better and more exciting than 2014.