How did it get to be almost 2015, already? Time to retrain myself to write the correct year on checks, once again (yes, I’m one of those people who still writes paper checks). And the correct year when I actually write notes or letters by hand (gasp!). And when I track versions of electronic documents. Or date invoices. Or write the date at the top of a page in my journal.
It’s also time for some New Year’s resolutions. Of course, you can make resolutions to do something better/different any day of the year. But there’s something about revising your habit of how you write the date, an act that filters into so many small daily tasks, that prompts a sense of newness, fresh starts, opportunity for change.
So, here’s my list of healthful resolutions for 2015, half-way through the teens decade of the new millennium:
- Enhance my weekly exercise routine. I do stretches every morning and Pilates once a week. But I stopped taking dance classes last summer—mainly because I was getting bored and the class involved a long drive. Time to check out a class closer to home or find something better. But I have to move, more, to keep my joints in shape and stay strong.
- Say thank-you to someone for something specific, each day. It’s all too easy to get stuck in all the things that go wrong. Expressing gratitude not only helps me appreciate all the good in my life—it also makes someone else’s day better.
- Declutter our home. This is a work in progress, to repair, repurpose or recycle what we don’t need and replace what’s broken and beyond fixing. We really don’t need so much stuff. And I feel better when our space is simplified.
- Favor locally grown, organic produce. It’s healthier, and it helps the planet.
- Write the first draft of my novel. Yes, I’m getting serious about my fiction. Started a novel in the fall, and my goal is to have a solid draft by this time next year. Investing time in my own art is central to my being—and well-being.
- Go/do/see someplace/something new each month. I want to keep growing.
- Limit multitasking. I’m really good at this, but it drains my brain. This is Part One of slowing down and focusing on what’s really important.
- Limit my to-do list to what I can actually accomplish in a reasonable period of time. This is Part Two.
- Spend undistracted quality time with family and friends. Silence the iPhone and put it out of sight. (Yes, Al, you can quote me to myself.)
- Give back to my community. I have to be careful with volunteer commitments, not to overextend myself and drain my energy. But I’ve found a pretty good balance between family, work and volunteering at present, and I want to continue as long as I’m able.
As 2014 draws to a close, my thanks to all of you who read this blog, to those who have shared your thoughts and feelings, and to all who care to understand what it means to live with a complex disease like scleroderma. My best wishes for a healthy, fulfilling, joyful and prosperous New Year!
Evelyn Herwitz blogs weekly about living fully with chronic disease, the inside of baseballs, turtles and frogs, J.S. Bach, the meaning of life and whatever else she happens to be thinking about at livingwithscleroderma.com.