While growing up, I watched and listened to too much talk about New Year's resolutions that didn't resolve, so I don't put much stock in New Year's resolutions.
Most of those resolutions were aimed at cutting drinking or smoking or weight by people who really weren't ready to do any of them. They seldom lasted longer than a month, or week, or all day after the day they were made.
In Echoland, in our cozy little corner of the world, most of us live in our own little daily life filled with choices. We can probably exercise more choices in any given day than some less fortunate have available to them in a lifetime. If you're destitute and disabled and hungry and homeless and living in fear as an escapee in some foreign land you don't have many free choices to make.
So let's appreciate all that we have here and now.
So. How about a slightly different approach for 2019? It's about choices, instead of the discipline sounding resolutions, that don't seem to work very well, although they may well be aimed at the same types of behavior.
Let's decide to choose the positive side of our daily life as the choices come before us. Let's look at the bright side, the positive side, and go light on the dark side. We will be the healthier and happier, for just that one way of living.
We make choices every day, hour and minute. Through the year it will be choices, choices, choices.
We can start right out at the beginning of each day. We can wake up in the morning, and if we're among the fortunate to be without, or with minimal pain, be thankful for a good night's sleep and tell ourselves it's going to be a good day. It usually will be.
On the other side of that coin, it we start out grumbling and talking about the bad day ahead, it most assuredly will be.
As we walk down a sidewalk, or from the parking lot into a grocery store we can wear a smile instead of a frown. They cost the same, and the experts tell us a smile takes less effort, even for us oldsters.
We can choose to eat healthy choices, with out paying the advertised "Healthy Choice" prices. We don't have to make or break a resolution to pick up an apple or orange instead of a candy bar. We can eat a few more vegetables and a little less fat meat, or meat that is less fat, at the dinner table and maybe another fruit instead of a pastry for dessert.
When we're going somewhere, we can choose to leave a few minutes earlier and set the cruise control for 55 mph instead of 68-70 mph.
We can choose to go to church on a Sunday morning, and choose to bring someone else with, or make a call and offer a ride to someone less mobile.
We can choose to accept the Vikings as the entertainment they do provide, and not agonize over what they might have been. Now we don't have to be concerned about them losing again next week to a team that is quite apparently better than they are, in that team's stadium.
We can choose to look forward to going fishing instead of watching football, believing the adage that the worst day fishing is better than the best day working, or watching the Vikes getting beat again.
We can bemoan the present state of our national politics, or take heart in the pendulum swing in our state and accept what is. Or, we can choose to offer our tiny individual better effort locally, and make a point to thank those partisan and nonpartisan friends and neighbors who serve with little or no pay in local elective office just to make their communities a better place to be.
If we just make the better choices, we'll feel better about the world and ourselves, and be the better for it. Have a happy new year!