Last night I sat at the dining room table making a list of things that I needed to do today. As I wrote a few items down, new things, some that had been nagging me for days, even weeks, started to crowd around, demanding to be added to my list. So many things to do.
The ultimate To-Do’s, of course, are my New Year’s resolutions. Like everyone else, I tend to treat my life as a Personal Improvement Project. Just a little thinking about the ways I might improve myself in 2017 has unleashed a flood of ideas: eat better, get more exercise, get more sleep, go to bed earlier, pick up the flute I used to play, pay and file bills more regularly, get my finances in order, clean the house regularly, … and I was just getting started.
So, before your New Year resolve flies out the window, here’s a much shorter list of resolutions inspired by a David Nichtern‘s 2011 New Year’s Resolution published in the Huffington Post:
I intend to cultivate patience & equanimity in 2017.
I will try not to panic when things appear to be off track, and I will try not to relax too much when everything seems to be going smoothly. Instead, I will try to cultivate awareness and presence with whatever happens.
I will try not to focus too hard on outcomes because life inevitably has its ups and downs, and neither is entirely under my control. Instead, I will try to pay more attention to the process of living, and try to develop understanding and sympathy for myself and others.
Have a Happy New Year!