Instead of Resolutions, A New Year Reset

I wasn’t born a list-maker, but this super-power of mine was born on the day when I almost got fired from my first job. I was fresh out of college and since then, Halleluiah. I saw the light and learned the power of breaking down tasks into action items. It’s served me well and this is the time of year when I don’t make resolutions but review my goals.

That near calamity happened when I was a fashion ad layout trainee and an art expediter for a Federated Department store. My role as an art expediter was to assign all of what needed to be created to the illustrators and the pasteup artists, ensuring that everything would get to the newspaper on time to meet their deadlines. I prided myself on holding all these dates and assignments in my 22-year-old brain; oddly, it even worked for a while. Until it didn’t and the art director was furious that there was a big white space in the Sunday paper where a paid-for ad was supposed to be because yours truly never got the ad to the paper. She was about to fire me on the spot, but I cried and begged, finally promising that I would mend my ways and become a list-maker. I have been one ever since. That near-disaster taught me my first lesson in organization, and now, years later and before New Year’s, I’ve been thinking about my goals for 2024.

I ain’t sayin’ what’s on my 2024 list, but what’s most important is the re-evaluation of my life. Who am I now? Which directions do I want to go?  This arbitrary date of January first feels like a fine place to start, even though It’s true what that they say, that each day is the “first day of the rest of my life. Sometimes I haul myself in for an occasional review when I begin to lose my way, but the new year is my motherlode of goal setting.   I never think about resolutions, but broader directions of what friendships and projects are important now.  I break my goals into action items and lists are born. Oh joy!

Each goal comes preloaded with its own list of tasks, which I assign to my calendar. These tasks have due dates, ensuring that I am on the way to a successful delivery. But that’s the easy part, like driving with a GPS. The hard part is the beginning where I create my roadmap in the first place, figuring out what to call the streets and figure out where they go.  Some roads may be easy to follow like a straight shot, but my favorite avenues wind around a bit with lots of great scenery and adventures. Right now, at the end of 2023 when I am proud to have completed a lot of last year’s goals, I relish the thought of a fresh start of new adventures and my biggest question, where to now?

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