As I sit in front of the home computing screen clicking out this last post of the year, it is 1:57 P.M. PST. In roughly ten hours, as Tennyson says, this year will be “dying in the night.” Hope springs eternal. A new year is upon us. It’s time to join the rest of the modern world in penning a list of resolutions to make 2014 the best year possible.
If I was indeed a kindred spirit to masses of humanity that call planet earth home, my list of resolutions would involve being trimmer, fitter, wealthier, more rested, healthier, more cultured, more well-read and basically a new and improved version of Blake Hiemstra, circa 2013. And though none of those items on humanity’s list is necessarily bad, I’m choosing this year to eschew the status quo in favor of one simple goal for the new year:
In 2014 I resolve to love more.
That’s it. I want to love more. I know that the statisticians among us may scoff at that kind of goal that is neither measurable or quantifiable, but I’m willing to endure a bit of scoff. When New Year’s Eve, 2014, rolls around, I’d like to have a great capacity to love and receive love than I do now.
As I sit here contemplating, I realize the irony that this goal presents. Obtaining it might just mean working through those standard, stereotypical resolutions. Allow me to explain.
Hitting the pavement to put a few more miles on my jogging shoes and a few less inches on my waistline is in itself a rather selfish goal, unless, of course, it’s done in the name of love. Perhaps improved cardiovascular health will give me increased energy and vigor so that I can I engage in spirited conversation with my wife when the kids go off to bed instead of nodding off into a comatose state as soon as the clock ticks 8:30 P.M.
Getting more organized in itself will make life easier and less stressful as a teacher, but perhaps the greater good of such efficiency is not just in cutting out the marathon grading sessions, but in creating energy and time to give concerted and quality feedback (and love) to my students’ writings.
Maybe the aim of reading a certain number of quality books this calendar year is not solely for the selfish fulfillment of being more intellectual, but rather to aid in conversations and to strengthen relationships with friends and family.
I’ve gone the route of the Resolution-aholic many times before, flaming out well before the national media starts replaying “I have a dream.” This year, I’m simply going the with the minimal. But hopefully, that sole, minimal goal is the only New Year’s Resolution that I’ve ever had that’s worthwhile and achievable.
Happy New Year from The Write Project.
What’s your goal for the year ahead? Share your dreams with The Write Project community by leaving a comment.