There are parts of myself that I’d like to abandon—pieces of me I hope will wither up, detach, and die like that extra bit of umbilical cord on a newborn child. I want to put as much space and time between these parts of myself as possible—distance myself from them by as great a margin as I can muster.
Fear: I don’t want to waste undue or unwarranted amounts of time fearing the imagined or hypothetical. I don’t want to fashion shackles of inaction for myself out of trepidation and worry. Fear has stilled my tongue when I should have spoken up. Fear has rendered me inert when I should have been reacting, acting, or moving forward. Fear has partnered with doubts to plant stifling insecurities. It has expanded to occupy too great a portion of what I can imagine or foresee. I want my counterproductive fears uprooted—ripped from my life like weeds and burned to nothing.
Judgment: I too often and too comfortably recline in a position of judgment over others. It is a sinister and counterproductive approach to self-soothing or feeling better about myself that I excessively engage in. Who am I to stand in approval or disapproval of any person, action, inaction, or life? It is contrary to love for me to judge—especially since I almost never have the whole story. Given more information, I tend to find that everyone—even those who appear to be failing—are doing the best they can with the resources they have. I want to take my judgmental tendencies, coat them in cement until they can’t float, and sink them.
Envy: What a caustic poison. What a self-destructive emotion. To look at what another person has (or has accomplished) with jealousy or resentment is self-defeating and futile. When I indulge envy, I act as though an increase in someone else’s good requires a proportional decrease in my own. Jealousy demands that I blind myself to the fullness of another person’s life—which includes joy and pain, successes and failures, peaks and dark valleys. If my dreams come true for someone else, I should feel more motivated, not sorrowful. At its core, envy is at its worst a lie and at its best an illusion. Another’s gain does not necessitate my lack. I want to smother envy in its sick bed. I want it to suffocate until it’s dead and lets go—no longer able to hold me back or down.
I want to enter 2014 open to opportunity. I want to live and love honestly—able to see people as they truly are without judgment or jealousy.
I want to enter the upcoming year with hope and faith in good things. I don’t want to allow the pessimistic side of my imagination to grow too big.
I want to live instead of just being alive. I want to act on my own behalf, move forward with confidence, and thrive. I want to be fully and honestly myself in all situations—not overly censored, apologetic, or deferential. I want to speak the truth rather than just saying what is easy to hear or expected.
I don’t want to get lost in a digital quicksand that pulls me down and away from authentic and meaningful connections. I want to look people in the face and have evocative conversations. I want to invest in friendships that go deeper than Facebook. I don’t want to just “check in;” I want to be fully present.
I will not proclaim these New Year’s resolutions. I have no faith in the practice. But when I think about what I’d like to see left behind in this year and the manners in which I’d like to grow in the next, theses are the things I will work to embrace or let go…starting today, starting now.