After attending a friend’s funeral, a few of us were reminiscing outside the funeral hall.
“It seems like we attend more funerals than weddings these days,” an old classmate said.
When we were in our twenties and early thirties, receiving invitations to weddings and one-month birthdays felt like a weekly occurrence.
Unfortunately, now that we’ve hit middle age, funerals have replaced those joyous celebrations of new beginnings as the occasions where old friends congregate.
Personally, 2022 was not a particularly happy year, with the premature passing of a good friend and a family member.
I’m not gonna lie. Their early departures impacted me greatly. Everyone’s time on Earth is limited, I shouldn’t be surprised, but the death of loved ones forces us to face mortality with a more pragmatic mindset.
The rest of our time might be twenty more years? Ten years, just one, or much shorter? Who knows?
I’ve reached that stage in life where time is now my most precious resource. Don’t waste time and energy on inconsequential people and things; every action should be more intentional, impactful, and meaningful.
How best to make a decent living while constructing a life that nourishes me both physically and mentally? And most importantly, still able to contribute to the betterment of the planet? These questions began to occupy my thoughts since that funeral when my classmate brought up the wedding/funeral observation.
Hence, setting New Year’s resolutions for 2023 took on new importance. I want to make them count.
I have always been good at setting personal goals and sticking to them.
- Some life-changing – 2019: redefine my relationship with alcohol or 2010: run an ultramarathon.
- Some practical – 2005: save a little and invest a little each month.
- And some a bit silly – 2021: finish that 1000-piece jigsaw puzzle that’s been sitting in the study for two years.
How about you? What are your resolutions? Are you already beating yourself up for not following through? (Did you know there’s a Quitter’s Day? Funny, but not that funny.) It’s ok. It has been less than a week. You can restart anytime!
Before I share my 2023 goals, here are some personal tips to help you determine your New Year’s resolutions and make this year a time of growth.
1. Is it meaningful?
First and foremost, make sure it is meaningful to you. Not for measuring yourself against some external, superficial yardsticks. Make sure it provides intrinsic value.
Have people around you that will hold you accountable or, even better, chase this goal with you.
I had two great training partners when I ran my first 100km in 2013. We kept each other motivated, and they made the entire training process super fun and meaningful.
3. Have a plan of attack.
Any worthwhile resolution should feel a bit daunting. So put pen to paper and detail how you plan to accomplish your resolution.
Be specific. Every mission looks more doable when you break it down into smaller bites. And you’ll feel less stressed once you download all the thoughts swirling in your brain onto a piece of paper.
4. But the goal should also be realistic.
Yes, it will require you to reach a little higher, but definitely doable with discipline and hard work.
Additionally, don’t overwhelm yourself with ten different resolutions. Start with just one thing and put your heart and soul into it, especially if you have found it hard to stick to a new year’s resolution in the past,
5. Don’t approach it with an all-or-nothing mindset!
You set out to lose 5 kg by summer, but you lost 2kg. That’s not failure. That’s excellent progress.
You aimed to read three books per month, but you read one in January? That’s still one more than what you would’ve read if you hadn’t embarked on this new quest. Celebrate progress and every milestone.
6. Close your eyes, breathe slowly, and visualize.
What would your life look like in six months if you changed nothing? Be specific. Visualize the details of the different facets of your life. Is it a joyful and meaningful life?
Every minute is an opportunity to cease settling and create a life you want to live by December 2023.
Without further ado, here are my 2023 new year’s resolutions:
Reduce my carbon footprint.
Help underprivileged children.
Complete the Javelina Jundred 100 miler in 20 hours.
Do a pistol squat.
Finish a novel I’ve been writing for two years.