Happy New Year: Finding Resolution

As a self-professed blonkie (read: blog junkie; yeah, you can trademark me on that one), I’ve cruised around to various posts listing new plans and resolutions for 2013.

So, of course, that set my mind spinning about what I could bring to the party.

I confess there was something getting in the way, though. There was some nagging feeling that kept me from sitting down and writing a post about my New Year’s resolutions. For a couple of days, I tried to figure out what it was.

It wasn’t for a shortage of things I wish to work on, either personally or professionally. Keep up on grading. Keep computer files organized. Get my house clean. Flip my classroom more. Take breaks from technology. Quit snacking so much. Try to do more centers. Blog more. Run more. Sleep more. The list goes on and on.

I’m forever an optimist, mentally visualizing my ideal teaching, my ideal life, my ideal self.

I’m also a perfectionist, which means I’m continually beating myself up for not being that ideal. Those things to work on? They play constantly in my head, like a tape loop that repeats itself.

That’s when it hit me. Why am I sitting here trying to make New Year’s resolutions when I’m really, in truth, doing it every day? Why should I make a special attempt on this holiday to focus on self-improvement when I’m critical of myself all the time? What is the point of using New Year’s as another opportunity to commemorate my shortcomings?

This year, I vote no.

It is more important to me that I begin to internalize the merits of self-worth. It is time to replace desire for perfection with the pursuit of excellence.

After all, how am I supposed to teach my students healthy responses to perfectionism if I can’t get there myself? Simply put, I can’t. I need a better way of doing business.

And you? Are you willing to toss aside traditional resolutions in favor of more attention to healthier, more positive thought patterns?

Who’s in?

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5 Responses to “Happy New Year: Finding Resolution”

  1. saved in drafts Says:

    I gave up with the usual ‘stop drinking’ or ‘stop biting my nails’ a few years back and make more generalised resolutions.
    i love lists, they keep me sane and motivated every day so personally i like to use the new year as an excuse to write a brand new one to hopefully work through the whole year – usually theyre just tweaks and small changes to improve where i am and what im doing with myself rather than drastic things because – like you- im quite happy with how things are and i dont think stopping the nail biting will change my life that much. However, I dont think theres any harm in setting personal goals no matter how small, just to give yourself that extra push šŸ˜‰ happy new year

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Thanks! I definitely get the list thing, and I use them all the time. I also agree that goals are important-I have those too, but it’s time to cut down on the static…

  2. Rebecca Michelle Says:

    Well said! As a teacher, I find that we engage in a constant reflective process so that we can be better the next day. In my personal life, I make a brief list (no more than five) of things I want to improve ( rather than things I resolve to do) in a year. I don’t know if writing down these five things helps, but it keeps them in the forefront of my mind.

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Thanks! Yes, I totally get that. Ot is helpful to have just a few things to keep in mind as a guide. I think there are definitely bigger, broader things I want to get better at, and I’ll always work on them. But I think this struggle with perfectionism takes the forefront, at least for now.

  3. A Matter of Resolve | Reflections, Rants and Raves Says:

    […] year, I watch the latest round of New Year resolutions, affirmations, oaths, and promises. I’ve not been one big on making resolutions, as it’s a never-ending process for […]

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