My New Year Resolution for 2019 was to end the year with a six pack--abs, not beer. The year prior, I had set out to complete three new books. Before that, I promised to come up with five new shirt designs per month for the year. If you've seen me recently, you could probably tell I wasn't rocking Chris Hemsworth level abs and I'm not yet as prolific a writer as Stephen King or anyone who has more than two books out in the world. But I didn't come here to badmouth myself. I came here, because my wife told me to write a blog post.
At this point, you may be wondering what kind of lofty goal I have set for 2020. While I would love to accomplish everything I'd set out to do in the previous decade, I've taken a different approach this year. The resolution was to form good habits--something I've struggled with since birth (apparently I didn't sleep most nights as an infant). This resolution sounds like a cop-out, I know. It's so vague! Nothing like ending the year with a six pack. And yet, it's working.
The first habit I'm forming is actually breaking a bad habit. I stopped drinking pop (or soda for you non-Midwesterners) on January 3rd. I feel like drinking pop is the Millennial version of smoking. We know it's slowly killing us, our kids harass us about doing it, and still we give in to the temptation. Now I'm told habits take something like 60 days to form. That puts me about three quarters of the way there, but it's a start.
The second habit is walking everyday. On January 12th, I purchased a used Fitbit and haven't looked back. Ashley added me to a walking challenge group and that's all it took. I'm super competitive. Like, my-family-doesn't-enjoy-playing-games-with-me kind of competitive. I can't help it if I win a lot, Ashley! Anyway, I've walked 145 miles in about a month. Half way to the 60 day habit-secured milestone (no pun intended).
Habit number three started yesterday. I sat my butt down and wrote a journal entry. I will be writing another entry when I finish writing this. I made a rule that I was not going to worry about making it look or sound pretty. I just sit and write whatever comes to mind. 59ish days to go on this one.
You might see a pattern here. I didn't at first, but it became clear pretty quickly. When I sat down to write this, I looked at some of my activities since 1/1/2020. I've seen my doctor more in two months than I saw in all last year. I completed physical therapy to help with shoulder pain I've been experiencing since 2011. I'm seeing a therapist to help me cope with anxiety. On Tuesdays, I attend a Mindful Self-compassion class over my lunch period. And it all adds up to taking care of myself. Mind and body. I'm still working on the soul part.
The hope is, instead of setting writing or exercise goals that I feel guilty about not completing, to take care of myself and hope that leads to some accomplishments to be proud of. Even if I don't know what those accomplishments might be yet.