Gain 70 pounds
When I started the year I was under 130 pounds, and I wanted to get big and bulky, as a reaction to the trauma of losing all of the muscle on an athletic frame. I couldn’t do squats, or handstands, or flips, or any of the acrobatic movements I’m accustomed to using in my interaction with the world.
The goal of 200 pounds, a weight I’ve never attained, was aspirational and full of the bullish hard work energy that gets me into trouble. What I actually wanted was to feel strong in my body, and my present weight of 170 makes me feel that way. I fantasize about getting bigger, but my digestion cannot handle the bulk of calories I would need to gain weight, especially with my dietary restrictions. I eat mostly meat, some fruit, and a few vegetables. No carbs or dairy, so gaining weight is a challenge.
I don’t mind failing this one, it was aiming too high.
Write the first draft of my next book, Life Balance
I have a 4-book plan that I am planning to continue:
- Marketing Yourself – a compilation of the lessons I’ve learned in digital marketing
- Playful Productivity – a manual on how to get more done in good cheer
- Life Balance – a new way for people to relate to work and rest
- Runaway – a memoir about my childhood and the traumas that made me into who I am
At the start of this year, I angrily discarded the Playful Productivity manuscript, and started writing Life Balance. But I quickly realized that this book would not translate to commercial success (and while I was enrolled in Thought Leaders Business School, this was the advice I got – write books that will result in commercial work.) I don’t have any offers or services in my Life Balance folder of IP, so after a few months of the hard work of starting a book, I went back to finish up Playful Productivity, because it was nearly done.
I polished off 18 chapters before I gave up on Playful Productivity a second time. I was continuing because I was already so close to being done; but I know now how much effort a book launch and layout and ebook and everything is, and I can’t justify going through that again if I’m not currently getting commercial feedback from the market that this direction is financially viable.
If writing and publishing articles and books is not going to bring me commercial success, I need to focus my time and energy on generating wealth for a little while, before I get back to writing books.
I still have every intention of filling a small bookshelf with the variety of books that I will publish one day; but I just published my first book last year, and I don’t have the financial gas in the tank to do it again so quickly.
One hour of self-care every night
What makes this resolution easy is my 8pm alarm. At 8 every night, an alarm goes off on my phone, to remind me to put on my Blu Blockers, and to invite me to retire to my bedroom for a healing practice. Yoga, pranayama, qi gong, meditation, watching a webinar replay, listening to an online course – these are all things I do from 8-9 pm, when I feel like it.
Because my will is weak at this point in the evening, I often don’t do much more than put on my red shades, while I do the dishes. I want to be more diligent about healing in this hour, and when I am battling chronic fatigue, it’s easy to do. When I’m not, I find it hard to intentionally slow down at this point in the evening, even if it’s for my own wellness.
Something I’ve found helpful is to commit to 10 minutes of pranayama. An hour is daunting, and it’s easier to skip; but 10 minutes is hard to skip, because it’s so short.
Set up a cold plunge
I ordered a Freezetub and got a big freezer with some plastic tubs that make big, big ice cubes. Now my morning routine starts with a shower, before I put on a swimsuit and drop some ice into my morning tub to chill for 5-6 minutes.
Because my morning routine evolves over time, I’ll make note of it here:
- Cold plunge and pranayama
- Vibration plate, infrared light therapy, and meditation
- Sun salutations
- Walk dogs
I don’t always get through all the steps – sometimes I skip a few, depending on how I’m feeling – but having this framework for my morning Power Playlist has served me well this year.
Weekly dates with my wife
Going out for dates is hard with such a restrictive diet. Dinner and drinks are out, and we prefer watching movies snug at home. But I think we achieved the spirit of this resolution with our dog walks.
We have two big dogs, and one of them is a little hyper. He bites his brother’s face in excitement when we walk them together. So every morning and every evening, we walk one dog, and then the other, holding hands.
These daily walks give us time to chat, which is the most fun part of our dates. Going places and ordering things is all incidental; what we really enjoy about our dates is the time to chat with our best friend, and converse about our lives and our world and what’s happening next. We get to do that with our dogs, which is why this isn’t a complete fail.
But it’s close. I need to be more intentional about taking special time to be with my lady wife.
Take one of my children out for lunch every week
This habit was easier at the beginning of the year, while I was in recovery from my relapse, and small outings like this were good for me to get my get-up-and-go going.
But when we hit a financial rough patch, buying lunch for 2 every week became a strain, and I tried to replace it with a cheaper coffee date. The topics we chose – chess for Taos and Indi, and Euclid for Zaden, didn’t grab their interest. Then it got cold, and we stopped going out in winter; when springtime came, and we were more flush, I should have started this habit again, and I didn’t.
I regret not trying harder on this one, because the window is closing on the time I can nurture a relationship with these lifelong companions while they are children.
Tropical family vacation
We went on a vacation to Queenstown, but we didn’t go to the tropics. Part of this was financial, and part logistical. I was just trying to get the bills paid the first half of the year; the second half, we had our windfalls, and Johanna went solo to the States to pack up the storage unit. Getting an international trip together this year would have been tough, and it wasn’t a high enough priority.
1 win, 3 fails, 3 partials
I broke more resolutions than I achieved this year (related post: Why Breaking New Year’s Resolutions Is Good For You) but by reviewing my list every year, I can calibrate how well I can predict my year ahead.
I’m not surprised that the February Resolutions I made while I was thin as a waif and confused by my career were not accurate. I’m confident I’ll have some misses when I make my New Year’s Resolutions tomorrow.