Resolutions and Exclusions

As part of the New Year tradition, I am posting my Resolution. I am also posting my Exclusions—some popular resolutions that I am not pursuing.

Resolution: My New Year’s Resolution is basically the same every year, and has two parts:

  1. Do more: “Do More” is my ongoing mode of travel through life because challenges are exciting and the more I accomplish the better I like it. Here are a few modes of doing more:
    • Industrious: Use “spare time” to build, create, accomplish something extra, professionally or personally (see “Builders vs. Bellyachers” below1)
    • Initiative: Beyond not leaving gaps in my work—Fill gaps left by other people in their work
    • Discipline: Do the worst/hardest items from my To Do list first (see “Time Management” below2)
    • Creative: Maximize work that is most creative, because that is the most rewarding as well as most difficult. I am always looking for trouble in this area.
  2. Increase the quality of everything I do. Quality depends on several factors:
    • Prepare: Whether at work or home, for any activity, do the homework, start ahead of the normal starting place, know my stuff
    • Apprehend: A notch above “comprehend”—mentally grasp and capture the whole picture to be sure I do it right the first time
    • Hone in on Details: Tasks and other activities have particles and layers—see the depths and micro-aspects and take care of them
    • Undivided Attention: concentrate on what I am doing—no distractions or multitasking (see “Time Management” and the “multitasking” reference below3)
    • Attention Span: Produce high-quality results over extended periods by practicing focused endurance
    • Handle with Care: Be careful with every microsecond and millimeter of my work—All my work has my name on it whether I sign it or not—it is mortifying and shameful to botch a job from carelessness (see “Celebrating Mistakes” below4)
    • Doublecheck Everything: See “The Doublecheckers” below5

Exclusions: For fun, I looked online for popular New Year’s resolutions. I found these common resolutions that I would not have:

  • Be a nicer person, help others, etc.: I’m nice enough as it is, as far as I can tell…comments welcome 🙂
  • Spend more time with family and friends: That pretty much happens without the aid of me making resolutions
  • Lose weight: Just lucky I guess, or just in denial
  • Get fit, Exercise more: I’ve been doing the same daily workout since 1973 so I don’t need that particular resolution
  • Quit smoking: I already don’t smoke, except when I breathe in Philadelphia
  • Quit drinking alcohol: I already don’t drink alcohol because I am OCD about my neurotransmitters; but anyway the AMA says 2 drinks a day is healthier than abstaining so not sure why this would be a health-related resolution
  • Travel more: I love where I live more than any other place to which I’ve traveled, across the US and Europe—now I like to stay put
  • Learn something new: I do that constantly—it would be like resolving to eat more ice cream
  • Get out of debt: No cc debt anyway—I am paying my mortgage every month—not much else I can do on the debt front
  • Manage stress: Stress comes from being idle long enough to notice you are stressed—Cure stress? Quit relaxing!

So much for the unneeded resolutions.

There is a reason my blog title at the very top is “Working Well, Living Well: Rose-Coutré on quality, content, active minds.” To me that is most important. My resolution is a recast of the same objectives every year, and every year I think I do a little better. Rewriting and renewing them helps me stay engaged in the good fight.

Here are some links to my earlier posts on similar quality-of-life objectives.

There’s more where that came from, in my new book Active Minds: How to Recapture the Magic of Everyday Life, if and when it ever gets published. Now that sounds like a great New Year’s Resolution!

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