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Making resolutions at the start of each year used to be almost like a religious task for me. We were never very religious in my family, but I took resolutions seriously — working for weeks to make the perfect goals that would help me be a better, happier person. Unfortunately, that activity dropped off once I went into grad school. I was already working so hard on my education and my degree that I couldn’t imagine expending even more effort into making personal goals aside from that. However, even after graduating and earning my degree, I didn’t pick up the habit again.
With all that happened in 2016, and after seeing all the hate and vitriol spewing into the internet from people’s keyboards, I think a lot of us need to make goals to help ourselves be happier, kinder people. True, many of us did not call each other terrible names or dehumanize each other, but with what we’re already dealing with, even voicing one unkind thought is voicing one too many, especially when it’s at the sacrifice of legitimizing someone else’s concerns and humanity. Life is hard and I don’t see why any of us think it’s okay to make it even harder for each other.
So, here’s to a better, kinder, more thoughtful year, and here are my resolutions:
- When compelled to say something unkind, take 10 seconds to breathe and come up with a more positive, productive response that will allow us to both treat each other with respect, as if we were fellow humans.
- Be more vocal — about my appreciation and gratitude for others and reach out to friends and family at least every other week; stand up against hate.
- Do something for a charity or good cause at least once a month, whether it’s donating, volunteering, or even something as simple as talking about a cause that’s doing good work.
- Laugh AT LEAST once a day.
- Be active for 20 minutes at least 3 times a week.
- Post more regularly on the blog this year.
I think these are very simple, and I’m working on the things I think I have the most trouble with. I’m looking forward to being more mindful about how I treat myself and others, and I can’t wait to make this year a great one.