Monday, January 24, 2011
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
There are many ways to view the annual ritual of passing from one year to another. For our purposes let’s use the noun page, as in turning the page from one year to the next. As we merge years and experience January we tend to look back and analyze the just-past year, and look forward to a new year of opportunities. The idea of making a resolution(s) to correct an issue or to improve life and health is part of the rite of passage from one year to the next. Studies have shown that the majority of Americans make at least one resolution each year. Studies have also demonstrated our lack of follow-through and commitment to our new goals. In short, the majority of us fail to honor our goals and, to make matters even more depressing, we fail rather quickly. I went on a strict diet one year and actually did well for several weeks; only to fall prey to an apple pie during a week of few, to zero, carbohydrates. I’m talking the pie; not just a piece.
We fail for many reasons, mainly due to attempting to change our strongest weakness. Life change is rough stuff, especially when we are battling our own personal demons. Another reason for quick failure is impatience. Are you inherently impatient? A quick test is the elevator: when you enter an elevator do you become impatient and irritated because the door doesn’t close fast enough? Do you push the close button several times, only to become even more irritated when a late arriving person pushes the open button as they attempt to join you for your ride? If you answered yes to either question you are indeed impatient, and as a result you will likely fail to keep your resolution; especially if it had anything to do with patience. We need less stress in life. We need reachable goals that actually lead to a better life. We need the sweet taste of success, not the bitter taste of failure. We need to move past apple pie and resolve to read more in 2011.
Reading is a low stress endeavor that can improve the quality of life. There is so much from which to choose virtually everyone can succeed in reading more. Plus, the paper and ink book is now sharing time with the electronic version. In seconds you can download an entire book and read it from your phone. Not even George Jetson could do that! I browsed a bookstore to note the varied titles available and came away with quite a list: The History of Salt (could be interesting, it’s been around a long time); The Science of Kissing (pretty sure it’s not actually a science): The New Evolution Diet (probably takes a million years to lose those last five pounds); A is for Armageddon (can’t wait for the sequel, B is for…); You Might Be a Zombie & Other Bad News ( maybe for a rainy day, but not at night for sure); and, The Carb Lovers Diet (been there, done that, ended up with apple pie all over my face, not gonna read this one).
Pick a book; pick a genre; turn the page on a new year with a new book and feel the stress ebb away. And, there’s always the Bible. Can’t go wrong there. Check out the new version titled The Story; a rendering of the Bible in free flowing story form. Scripture will change your life; other books will change your life; the beauty is that your life will be changed in different ways when you read both. That’s like 2 for 1. And who isn’t looking for a great deal in the new year?