By Lori Pankonin, Imperial Republican Co-publisher
More and more people have come to the conclusion that New Year’s resolutions aren’t worth making. I took interest in a comment I read that we shouldn’t be as concerned about the food we eat between Christmas and New Years as much as that eaten between New Years and Christmas.
Isn’t that the truth? What counts are the habits we work on all year long, not just during a short-lived period.
If a New Year’s resolution starts on Jan. 1 and you mess up by the 2nd, it’s too easy to consider it blown. So much for that thought. Guess I’ll wait another year to make it a resolution again.
Goals and habit changes need to be ongoing day after day after day, possibly hour after hour. The challenging times create more strength. And when you fall off, you need to climb right back on.
If we take just one time a year to analyze how we can make life better, there is too much to tackle at once. What would I like to work on in my life?
1. Lose weight. 2. Exercise. 3. Eliminate clutter. 4. Do good deeds. 5. Love and laugh.
So if I truly feel that these changes would make my life better, then why not just do all of them? Good question. Why not?
I have lost weight (many times). I’ve been in the exercise habit (many times). I’ve eliminated clutter (many times). I’ve done good deeds and I’ve loved and laughed. Obviously none of them are impossible.
But no matter how many times I’m reminded how great it feels to accomplish even one of these victories, I slip. I stray. I fall away and wish I were back, wish it would happen again and stick.
What are your goals and wants? Do you ever stray?
Sometimes we look at bad habits of others and think, why can’t they conquer that? Or we get older and wonder why our bodies, metabolism and energy can’t be like they were. We’ve got to realize that everyone has different challenges and the challenges change.
That’s why there are counselors, pastors, health care professionals, financial planners, personal trainers, self-help books, parents, caring relatives and good friends who are there to help guide us.
Some people have better genes than others to maintain a lean physique without having to work at it. Others have the genes that make it harder to control alcohol addiction or depression when their friends find no challenge in the same environment.
Even when something isn’t natural, we can train ourselves. Athletes who don’t have real natural ability but have desire and a hard work ethic sometimes prevail. Students who have to study numerous hours more than others in order to get good grades BUT they have the desire and hard work ethic to make it happen definitely have a chance.
Some children grow up eating healthy, keeping active, enjoying learning, helping with chores and believing in God. They definitely have a head start over other youngsters who haven’t felt loved or nourished. But a bad attitude mixed in with a positive upbringing can tear down opportunity, just as a can-do attitude of children raised in unfortunate circumstances can carry them through.
Call them resolutions, goals or wants. I am reminded of what simple changes could make me happier. I am going to work at finding the right attitude to make life better each day.
When I fall, I’ll get up again. And I’ll focus on what I might do for someone else. Doing a good deed is bound to feel good.
LORI PANKONIN is co-publisher of Johnson Publications newspapers in Imperial, Wauneta and Grant, and part-owner of the Holyoke Enterprise in Holyoke, Colo. E-mail: ljpank@chase 3000.com