Making resolutions for the upcoming year is, like voting, something we do to assert control in our unstable and uncertain lives. Many times this is the right choice and things actually change for the better. I did not make substantive resolutions in 2016 and the year was a disaster. Compare this to a wonderful year like 2014 where I strongly resolved to stop eating candy and cookies, which led to Robin Williams finally killing himself. It's too late to consider reviewing the material of two years ago so let's assume it all went as planned and dive right into 2017.
Add fruit snacks and yogurt to my banned food list
Like anyone else battling an eating disorder (vegetarianism), I find control from and define my identity by what I put into my mouth. Over the last three years I have successfully cut cookies and candy, as your brain can conceive of it, out of my diet. But like a river finding a new path around a dike, my sweet tooth forced alternate methods of satiation. Have you ever snorted Stevia? Anyway, this dietary whack-a-mole has forced me to add fruit snacks (or essentially any "non-candy" hiding in the candy aisle) and frozen yogurt to the banned foods list.
Take two concrete steps to learn more Spanish
¿Hablas español? I don't, as evidenced by the fact I used the very casual tü format in that question and then incorrectly used an umlaut instead of an accent when trying to explain my mistake. I do however have a background in studying the language and a very real need to get myself back up to a level where I can at least buy drugs or explain why all JJ Abrams creations produce existential disappointment. Taking a class is also a great way to meet friends!
Have a Dave Matthews Band Renaissance
I could have put a different artists in this slot (as there will be multiple renaissances this year) but since this list is online I want to follow the standard online playbook: say something in the most controversial way you can and then slowly walk your audience through unpacking it afterward. In the pretend vision of my social world, getting unironically back into DMB is only a step or two below ironically re-joining ISIS. But I want to be one of those people who loses hang-ups and biases as I get older instead of the people whose world view and interests solidify like the stone monuments I never helped ISIS destroy. So this year I will become a "Davehead" and listen to more sweet ass jams.
No more solitary games
...And I don't just mean solitaire! (Though I certainly mean that.) Whether on the phone or computer, I find myself going through distinct and powerful phases of filling boredom/dread/whatever with games. I'm not officially a gamer, but at one point a few years ago I played Euchre on my phone for a few hours straight! Most recently, I regressed during a trip to visit my parents by getting back into early high school favorite Warcraft 2. This resolution wouldn't be needed if I could leave this shameful the activity there (like my kids) or relegate it only to weekends (like my other kids), but I don't have that level of self control.
Watch a non-TV movie once a week
You: "Glenn you watch movies all the time! Feels like every time I open my AtHome app, I see you on that couch with a cold beer staring at the screen with that dead look in your eyes. Why would you possibly need to make a resolution about watching MORE movies on TV?"
Me: "Hear me out. First of all, the movies don't have to be on TV - they could also be in the theatre. Second of all, the movies I'm watching on my very limited cable package are usually terrible Hallmark or Lifetime productions. I watch them because they're on. By setting this goal, I'll be forced to intentionally choose something hopefully more highbrow - and I can use my new Letterboxd app to track it! Third of all, I hope you enjoyed what I did on Tuesday night. It was for you."
Thanks for reading. Let's check in at the middle of the year to see how everything is going. Below are some things that might help you out as you plan your 2017 resolutions:
How to Make Friends Faster
7 Simple Rules for Getting Lean in 2017
Old habits die hard. Here's how to change your life in 2017
To Live Remarkably, Repeat This 1 Affirmation Every Single Day for the Rest of Your Life
What a Sensory Isolation Tank Taught Me About My Brain
Play Warcraft 2 Online