a new year, a new list…

I always have good intentions at the start of every year. I try to stay away from making “resolutions” at the New Year because, let’s face it, “resolution” is just a shitty replacement word for “unattainable and/or disgustingly lofty goals I will probably never reach and will promptly quit working on in approximately five to nine weeks.”

So instead, I have decided to call mine “intentions.” Because I am one of those aforementioned people who drops those “resolutions” “intentions” like a bad habit (which, ironically, are immeasurably difficult to just “drop”…). And then let’s just admit the obvious: my use of “intentions” is just a shitty, fancy word for “resolutions.” Alas, I digress.

But anyway, if you’ve been reading along with me for any length of time, you’ll know that this isn’t my first time writing about goals or resolutions or intentions or whatever the hell you want to call them. (You can read about them here and here should you be interested.) And I dropped the ball on many of them. I even went so far as to re-evaluate some of those things back in May and change them up a bit, and I still dropped the ball. Since then, I have changed them, in my mind, a bit more.

The moral of this post: I cannot be trusted with my own goals.

I looked back at my New Year intentions in May because we, as a collective group of humans, were nearly halfway through another year and I knew I had screwed up. And now, nine days out from my birthday, I’m looking again and starting a new list. Rather than considering things strictly from the perspective of January 1st, I have a tendency now to look at a new year beginning with each birthday; or each November, really. Since my father died on the first of November, I started counting the years he was gone, and then two weeks later my birthday would come, and it all just sort of meshed together. Another November, another year. Another list. I do love lists and love crossing things off. There are few things in life that give me joy the way tracing a line through a phrase to show it as “completed” does.

I’m not ready to make this new list public yet, but I’m thinking about it and working on it. Looking at my life list, I don’t even know where to begin. The first thirty things (also known as “Thirty Before 30” to me) are looking more and more daunting. I’m getting uncomfortably closer to 30 than I would like to admit. And it’s not the turning 30 part that is worrisome to me – it’s not crossing those thirty things off the list before reaching 30 that makes me nervous.

You see, I’m one of those people who becomes disappointed with myself pretty easily. I’ve gotten better about this over the years; my disappointment used to also come with a heavy dose of self-shaming. I’ve moved past most of that, but maybe I’ve moved too far… These days, if I don’t get something done, I shrug it off by going to Starbucks and telling myself it wasn’t that big of a deal. Or telling myself I’ll just get back to my routine tomorrow. Or telling myself I don’t really care. The secret, however, is that I do care. I care a lot. But somehow I’ve gotten so so good at pretending that it’s no big thing and I don’t stop, I just keep walking.

Maybe that’s where I need to start this year: taking responsibility for the things I set out to attain. Reach those things, or at least make an attempt. And then, if I don’t make it, at least I know I tried. But not trying? That has to stop.

So here’s to another new year! We can celebrate on January 1st together, but for now, let’s just bask in my future plan-making. Because I can already feel it: 2015 is going to be a freakin’ awesome year for us, Reader.

Believe it.


  1. Pingback: once a runner, always a runner… | a little bit brave

  2. Dan Antion says:

    I just crossed the “60” mark (also a November baby, we are the best) and I’m sure that I’d I had a 60 before 60 list it wouldn’t have everything crossed off. Having the list is a good thing in and of itself. Don’t fret.

    • shops4shoes says:

      You’re always so encouraging, Dan! Thank you. November babies are totally the best, I agree. I have my doubts about finishing the thirty things, but I’m hoping to get it together next year and make a fool-proof plan to pull it all off. :) Here’s to more expectations and good intentions!

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