Happy New Year, everyone! Whether you celebrated last night with sequins and alcohol, friends and a movie, or a kiss with your significant other, the good news is that we made it to 2014! And we all know what New Year’s Day means. Resolutions. We have to make resolutions, to shape a new me, make ourselves better, newer, shinier. Lose the weight, get the girl/guy, write a book, give up drinking or smoking…
Last year I compiled a list of 10 New Year’s resolutions on my old blog. To update, I failed to finish A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin (I made it 7/8 through Book Four and for some reason stopped…and now I don’t remember what happened, so I have to start it again), I did not become the godmother of William and Kate’s little Prince George, and I didn’t meet the love of my life (but if you’re out there, 2014 isn’t too late). I did however, publish a book. It wasn’t a novel and it didn’t become a film or a teen fettish, but hey. I did it. I kind of blogged more…sort of. Here I am, anyway.
But let’s cut to the chase.
New Year’s resolutions are about making yourself better (apparently). Here are 10 smallish resolutions I’d like to attempt, and that I think everyone else should too.
1. Watch a foreign film.
Like, who watches foreign films? We see them flaunted a wee bit during awards season, but that’s it. We don’t follow up, look it up, go through the pleasurable pain of illegally streaming it from the internet, sitting on your bed at 1 am and squinting at the captions glowing on your screen. At least I don’t. But spending two hours watching and listening to another culture, without leaving the comfort of your duvet? This way you can be cultural, sophisticated, and lazy, the best North American combination.
Because if you haven’t, you should, and if you have, then you’ll know exactly why you should do it again.
3. Learn to cook or bake something new and exotic.
For me, this should be easy since my culinary skills cover mac n’ cheese and pancakes, and that’s about it. Becoming a pro at a Greek dish or Italian tradition not only tastes good, but it’s highly impressive as well.
Don’t go for something predictable like JFK or John A. MacDonald or Elvis. I’m not saying these people aren’t important, because, duh, they are, but try someone you don’t know anything about! Maybe Frida Kalho or Maya Angelou? Maybe Georgia O’Keefe or Rosalind Franklin? (I didn’t intend for all my examples to be female…it just turned out that way.)
Not only are you learning about someone imperative to life as we know it (or maybe as you will come to know it), but you’ll be bursting with facts that will awe the people you converse with. You will appreciate people who aren’t often appreciated by the general public, aside from in English and art classrooms and cafes.
Jane Eyre, The Lord of the Rings, Anna Karenina, Homer’s The Odyssey, Utopia…you pick. Read a really hard book, one that you maybe gave up on in the past. I’d like to re-tackle Jane Eyre, and maybe LOTR.
7. Eat a “weird” and/or disgusting food.
For me, that might be sushi. I’ve never had it, and it doesn’t sound particularly appetizing, but this is my chance to prove myself wrong. It’s all about being cultured, people!
8. Take yourself on a date.
Whether you’re single or happily attached, do yourself a favour and take yourself on a date, at least one. You can dress up or dress down, go out or eat in. Take yourself to dinner and a movie, or go to an art gallery maybe your boyfriend/girlfriend/wife/husband/etc would never set their foot in. Make yourself your favourite meal and spend a night in your pajamas blasting Imagine Dragons and reading your favourite books.
Only you know what your ideal date is, so it only makes sense that you would be the one to take yourself on it.
(I’ve done this before, and I’ll be doing it again.)
9. Play with a little kid.
Because they’ll make you remember what it’s like to be five or seven or nine, when everything was simple and big and the most important observations are made. It’ll be awkward at first, because maybe it’s been a long time since you played, but do it. Little kids love teaching adults, especially how to play.
10. Love yourself and others.
This is literally the corniest thing I could say, but I don’t give a damn. It’s true.
Maybe this year is the year you’ll make new friends, better ones, ones that love you, too. Maybe this is the year you’ll be good to yourself, stop blaming yourself, stop filling your body with toxins, stop hiding. Get to know yourself, get to know the people who you love or the people you want to love.
Dagnabit, just love. It’s the best thing anybody can do.
Do you have any New Year’s resolutions? Are you prone to keeping them, or not?
[Disclaimer: I didn’t intend to infringe any photographic copyrights!