Monday, January 4, 2010

Revolving Resolutions

Start of a new year, start of new lists, new resolutions. Quick show of hands: how many have the same thing on their list this year they had last year?

I'm as guilty of that as the next person, though it's not always a bad thing. Some resolutions are things you ought to keep to, year in, year out. You could argue after a certain point they stop being resolutions for improvement and just become things you do, and therefore shouldn't count as goals, but I don't buy that. Some things are constant goals, and there's always some room for improvement even on the perennial ones.

Sometimes things drop off the list one year for various reasons, only to end up back on it at a later date. Maybe it was something we thought we outgrew, or something we put away for a bit and have only now come back to. Maybe it was just something we stopped codifying at the beginning of each year only to realize we needed it on that list to reinforce it.

One of mine this year is taken from a poster I had up in college. I came across it when I moved this year and have put it back on my wall. I was going to quote the whole thing but then realized that it's copyrighted, someone might object, and starting the new year of with a bit of plagiarizing - or at least unauthorized reproduction even when credit is given - was probably not the way to go.

It bills itself as the creed of the sociopathic obessessive compulsive, and while I no longer agree with all of it as wholeheartedly as I did in college - though the one about using a bulldozer to deal with bureaucracy still sounds about right - there is a comment about patience and persistence that I find pertinent. It reads, "Patience is a virtue, but persistence to the point of success is a blessing."

Which is part of what this whole writing profession is about. You have to keep at it, else you're not going to get anywhere. It's not guarantee of success, as other things go into that formula, but it is an integral part. You have to keep at it. And if it helps to put it on your list of resolutions, year after year, then I say by all means move it to the top of the list. (Another on the list on my wall reads, "If it's worth doing, it's got to be done right now.")

Just as long as it actually gets done, and isn't being recycled year after year because you never fulfill it.

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