A dear friend of mine – a young woman whom I envy for her bravery, she packed up her life and moved to Brooklyn from NC on a whim – has decided that October 1st is going to be her very own new year. She published ten goals to those of us she feels will keep her honest and she has a year to accomplish them; new years resolutions, really.
I can’t get enough of this idea. Of creating your own beginning. Of completely embracing the ideas that every sunrise is truly a new day; believing that it is never too late to start over. I think of all the rules and trappings of limbo, I forget this one most often: this floating I’m doing is a wonderful opportunity. This is a chance to figure out what it is I really want to do with the next 70 or so years of my life. A chance to be where I want to be and get inside my own head in a way that I might never get to do again. And so, I’m not going to give myself a year, but I want tomorrow to be a new start of sorts for myself as well. From tomorrow until the new year, I have some goals.
- Focus on my health more acutely: I understand (and somewhat embrace, to be honest) the fact that I am a drinker and a pack a day smoker. I doubt those are habits I will ever give up without serious just cause (other than the health factor, I mean) and so I need to focus on other things I can do. Pay attention to my posture so that my back doesn’t hurt after working all day. Walk more. Eat better than ramen and take out and cookies. Drink more water and less soda. These are things that if I do them, I should be feeling better by new years in leaps and bounds.
- Branch out musically: I tend to get into certain genres and scenes and then never do anything else. I’d like to check out more jazz and blues clubs, go dancing at a lounge every so often (I might even have to get dressed up for that – the horror!), and check out venues I’ve yet to experience (there are entire communities in Baltimore and NoVa that I’ve never set foot in!).
- Trim down the stuff that I own: Starting with an awesome house-wide yard sale in a couple of weeks, I’m planning on using this Fall/Winter to do what I started doing last Fall thanks to the Break Up of Doom. At the time, I realized how utterly impossible it is to call up your bff and shove your stuff into a car and move in an orderly, FAST fashion. Aka – I wanted to get out of Cleveland Park as quickly as my boxes of books would allow. Well, boxes of books don’t move so quickly. I decided then that I would seriously cut down on buying and keeping and started with donating a bunch of books/clothes but it also sort of ended there. Not this time. I’m determined. I’m going lean, mean, and mobile. Here’s hoping.
- Win NaNoWriMo: This is my 7th year taking the 50,000 word challenge (in thirty days!) but I haven’t won it since 2006. I am determined. I have a goal. I (sort of) have a plot. I have very little else to do in the month of November.
- Lastly, I will get back to my roots: I’ve started all ready, by re-immersing myself in the social life and political debate of the DCYRs. Monday night there was happy hour-ing. Tonight there is an event with George P. Bush. Tomorrow there is a fundraiser for an old friend who is now running for office in NoVa. It feels good to debate and discuss again. To be respected for my opinion and my history in policy. It’s been too long, and I won’t let another campaign season (2010 midterms, here we come!) pass without my presence.
Well then, it seems like a lot when you just list them out and give yourself a deadline. But deadlines are good, they push us, they expand our comfort zones, they give us a real target. I will spend this Fall making DC my home again, something I should have been doing all of 2009 (something I need to do before I consider taking a chance else where, something that’s been tickling my interest for ages). I have a soundtrack to guide me, friends to keep me company on the trip, and clear goals ahead – besides having missed the Muse/U2 concert last night, I’d say I’m sitting pretty going into October, how about you?