Hillary aglow

Today is New Year’s Day, and with the day comes the energy of new resolve. It seems hopeful that so many folks start the New Year with intentions to change for the better: this year, we tell ourselves, things will be different.

On the one hand, this is the definition of insanity: here’s to another year of doing the same things and expecting different results. But on the other hand, this is a perfect illustration of the old axiom “Hope springs eternal.” They say that second marriages represent the triumph of hope over experience, and every New Year’s Day, many of us choose hope, again, despite past experience.

We are the same person on January 1st that we were on December 31st, only one day older. But this widespread determination to turn a new leaf along with a calendar page is both hopeful and encouraging. I heartily approve of renewed resolve not because we’re likely to achieve our New Year’s resolutions but because there is something wholesome about trying. The stretch demanded by reaching is itself salubrious.

My goals for 2023 are the same as most other years. Every day, I want to write in my journal, take and post at least one photo, meditate for at least five minutes, and walk at least 17,000 steps. Every week, I want to blog at least three times, write at least one letter, and go on some sort of Fun Outing. Every month, I want to go to the Zen Center and to a museum or botanical garden at least once, and over the course of the year, I want to read at least 50 books.

In 2022, I faithfully kept some of these goals…but others, not so much. To me, what’s important isn’t so much the perfect keeping of a goal but the dogged determination to keep returning to it.