I’ve spent approximately 10 minutes (no joke) trying to start this post. Do I start with a generic “Happy New Year!” as I’ve done in the past? Do I make the obvious observation that every year begins rather the same–filled with hope and promise?

Or do I cut corners and simply begin?

My thoughts on New Year’s Resolutions have changed over the years. Some years I think they’re a ridiculous notion that prevent people from self-improvement year-round. Other times I think, who cares? If it gives a person the push they need to make changes in their lives, what’s the harm?

It just so happens that this year, I have goals and resolutions. On top of that, I’ve also chosen a word for the year. (Who am I?)

When I first heard of the concept, I was a bit skeptical. The benefits of referring back to a word like balance or simplify were lost on me. They just seem like flowery words that a person uses to seem deeper than they actually are. They are words that have lost their meaning over time through improper and overuse. Put simply, they are words that don’t resonate with me.

I didn’t want a pretty sounding, but empty (to me) word. The goal was to find one that spoke to the higher truth of who it is that I want to be in the new year. And not just the new year–but from here on out.

Which is why the word that I chose is:

persevere (verb.)
continue in a course of action even in the face of difficulty or with little or no prospect of success.

It was the latter part of the definition that sold me: “with little or no prospect of success.” That perfectly encompasses the person I once was–the person I so desperately wish to be again. I want to be the kind of person who chases their dreams even when it is impossible to visualize success.

And as I type this, I only begin to understand exactly how true that rings. I want to be foolish when it comes to my aspirations. To feel exhaustion set in and rejoice that it comes from a worthy endeavor–from something of value and meaning to me. I want to give all of me to that which I love.

What other reason is there to live?

So now I transition to the other part of this post:


Resolutions are “firm decision[s] to do or not do something.” Goals are what we ultimately are striving for. Thereby it seems that resolutions are more about intent? Regardless, here’s what I hope to accomplish in 2017.

Write 150 posts.

This averages out to three posts a week. It’s a goal that I have every year, and every year I fall incredibly short (which is funny because I’m short. Get it, get it?). And yes, this post was supposed to go up on Monday, a sign that ordinarily would not bode well for me. Still, here’s the post anyway.

Plus I’ve still got two more days for two more posts. It’s fiiiiine.

Some smaller, but related, items: update my about page and social media accounts.

Read 50 books.

Hooray for repetitiveness! And self-explanatory goals!

Two things I would like to add. (1) In order to become more cultured, I also want to tack on the goal of reading one book from the TIME 100 list. (2) I won’t shy away from abandoning books. There are too many out there to waste my time trudging through one.

Watch 50 movies.

Over the past couple of years, movies have become more engrossing for me. My newfound joy was in large part my best friend’s doing. It’s a great pastime and I don’t feel as though 50 is too far a stretch considering I saw 30+ movies last year (that’s just counting the new releases, not the new-to-me films).

An addendum to this, as with the books, is that I hope to watch at least one movie from the AFI 100 list every month. Again–to be cultured and whatnot.

Reach goal weight of 110.

Weight has consistently been a struggle for me. About three years ago, I was about 15 pounds away from my goal weight. Then life, and the cons of a long distance relationship, happened.

But with a plan in place, I’m reaching my goal weight–and maintaining it.

Transfer to a four-year institution.

For the past six years, I’ve struggled with getting a higher education. First, I got kicked out of UCSB after my first year. Since then, I’ve floundered around at community colleges for god knows how long. But I’ve floundered enough that it might be possible to finally transfer to a “real” school. It might take a long time, but I will get that diploma.

This last one is perhaps the most frightening of all–

Get a literary agent and publish something.

And just as it was with the introduction to this post, I’ve spent about 10 minutes debating whether I should leave this in. It’s scary to not only put into words, but put out in the open. Because now it’s not just a crazy dream. It’s a crazy dream that I will actively pursue.

Though I still plan on finishing school to get a degree in accounting, I’m not going to become complacent just living with that. I will not settle for my plan B.

Welcome, year of no sleep.