The Year of Growing Personally

I hate cliches.  I’ve always preferred to think of myself as a Special Snowflake of an individual.  But, working in the customer service industry as I do, I’ve learned that virtually EVERYONE thinks they’re a Special Snowflake.  Most of us are not.  We like Taylor Swift.  We eat at the Olive Garden.  We wear infinity scarves and grow the ever-ubiquitous beard.  So, even though it’s a cliche, I’ve developed a New Years Resolution plan that will hopefully turn me into a Better (if not Especially Special) Snowflake

Of course I want to lose weight (or at least eat in such a way that I’m unafraid of dropping dead of a heart attack at the age of 40).  Of course I want to save money.  I want to travel.  I want to shop.  I want to get a hair cut and I want do every cliche thing that every cliche woman in every Nicholas Sparks-Hallmark Channel-FiftyShadesofPinterest meme does.  And I won’t apologize for it.  Here’s what I really want:

For years now, I’ve had an ever-increasing list of books that I wanted to read. But somehow, thanks to Facebook timesucks and Netflix bingewatching, I’ve never gotten to it.

For months now, I’ve been trying to get the needle on the scale moving back in the “losing” direction; it seems to be in an upward climb ever since I moved away from the pedestrian lifestyle of NYC and my beloved gym membership at Retro Fitness.

For decades now, I’ve been horrible in the kitchen.  I’ve listened to crappy, recycled music.  I’ve slept through church.  Procrastinated writing projects.  Gone into too much debt. Given excuses to get out of social gatherings.  Gathered too much clutter in my house, on my waistline and in my head.  And I don’t know if it’s New Years, a desire for a post-Holiday detox or the fact that I just got over the worst flu I’ve had in a decade…but I just feel like I can be a better me and that making a conscious effort to do so would make me a happier, more satisfied person.

SO…in 2015, I resolve to grow personally in the following ways:

I’d like to read at least one book a week.  I’ve developed a calendar that will be published in a separate post, but for this first week, I’m reading the interminable vampire/zombie novel The Passage by Justin Cronin.

I’d like to try a new recipe once a week.  I don’t have a calendar for this one yet, but…maybe, we’ll see. Just to manage your expectations, I don’t have a very complicated pallet.  Don’t expect me to be whipping up foie-gras or braising ox cheek or blanching anything.  That’s just not me.  Really what we’re going for here is a better sensibility on portion sizes and the ability to tell when meat is cooked without fearing salmonella and subsequently charring my dinner to a crisp.  First week’s recipe is this Shepherd’s Pie (but I reserve the right to change my mind).

I’d also like to try a new exercise once a week.  This one gets a bit tricky because, from what I understand, there’s only so many different ways to crunch one’s abs or deadlift weights.  I’m also at a disadvantage because, in favor of their newly renovated “gym,” (read: two ellipticals and a bo-flex), my apartment complex has cancelled all of our free memberships to Better Bodies.  Sad face.  So, I’m doing this a la carte.  And, because I was always secretly tempted to purchase the DVDs of it on late night television, I’m starting this bitch off with some Richard Simmons courtesy of YouTube.  Downstairs neighbors Kenny and Daryl, I apologize in advance for all the hootenanny.

And generally exit my comfort zone once a week.  I’m always expressing interest in seeing recommended shows or doing recommended things around town and then ultimately wussing out because I’d have to drive somewhere I’ve never been before or be with people I don’t know.  If there’s an obstacle involved, I can always find an excuse.  This week, I’ll be doing that by attending the End of the Year party at my new job, where I’ve met essentially no one except my husband, who also works there.  And, yes, you can expect this to get more exciting as the year goes on.  Especially around OSCAR time!  (Maybe that’s not very out of my comfort zone, but it’s my favorite, so suck it).

Once I’ve completed the week, I’ll post reviews about the experience in case you’ve ever been interested in, say, Sweatin to the Oldies Disco Dream.  Stay tuned!

For now, I’ve got to get back to The Passage.  I’m only 65% of the way through.

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