…on resolutions

It’s safe to say 2022 has so far been the most lackluster start to a year that ever was. I feel for regions that have had covid around longer than we have in Queensland. Melbourne: hand on heart, you guys have more right to this whinge than me. Folks in the US and UK and Europe – avert your eyes. I selfishly claim the right to whinge on my own blog. Coming off a week of iso with a positive in the family has definitely disrupted a flow that just was reaching fruition getting set up the first week back at work. Now I’m tired before I even start.

I know I’m not the only one who likes to start a new year with intention. When I was a kid I made resolutions. These days I choose a word or phrase to inspire me, or a good habit to adopt, or I’ll make a change of some sort, like clean out some cupboards or rearrange our furniture. Recently it’s a phrase or motto I can live by until it becomes habit. ‘Little and often’ for my procrastination and perfectionism. ‘Less is more’ for my inclination to magpie every object that catches my eye, and overeat, or obsess. I know plenty of people who do the very same, in their own ways. It’s not a resolution as such. There’s more breathing space.

But this crazy year? Do I really need that kind of pressure?

Well, weirdly, yes I do. Why? Because I like myself better when I’m striving. I don’t do so well with time on my hands. I’m not a Type A (husband definitely is) but I like to keep busy. I like variety. Actually, I NEED it.

And rituals support the small changes I want to make in my life. And also, not slacking off is a mental health strategy. Writing is a mental health strategy. And maintaining some vestige of order and pattern in my day to day definitely greases the wheels and facilitates flow. It’s easier than fighting the chaos.

Sounds overly dramatic but some days it really *does* feel like chaos. Emotionally speaking, I’m spread pretty thin and I will write more about that very soon.

Anyhoo, I often listen to Freakonomics Radio while I’m driving for my day job. This one particularly resonated, which is why, if you are still reading (thank you) it feels appropriate to share it here.

https://freakonomics.com/podcast/are-you-ready-for-a-fresh-start-replay/

Behavioral scientists have been exploring if — and when — a psychological reset can lead to lasting change. We survey evidence from the London Underground, Major League Baseball, and New Year’s resolutions; we look at accidental fresh starts, forced fresh starts, and fresh starts that backfire. And we wonder: will the pandemic’s end provide the biggest fresh start ever?

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