How Do You Start A Year Right?

woody1The wonderful list above was posted a couple years ago on Boing Boing and it is popping up again as we start a new year. The 33 rulin’s were penned by Woody Guthrie sixty-one years ago. It is a mighty fine list.

New year’s resolutions were pretty simple and private things pre-Internet. Like Woody, you may have written them down, or shared them with another over your New Year’s Hoppin John. That was about it. Today, there is so much on-line guidance about how to get yourself on track. There are so many nifty tools available to track your progress/failures. Like a lot of people, I definitely want to make sure that my year is set up for good things, and that my failures of last year won’t be repeated. But what is the best way to do that?

I must divulge that I give myself a little slack in getting my act together for the new year. You may notice that It is January 4th and I am really just getting serious about this. But it is okay. I have a January birthday! I have decided that my new year’s resolutions need to be made by my birthday. If procrastination is one of my vices, I don’t have to be mad at myself until January 18th rolls around and I am still resolution-free. If I get this blog post done today I am winning!

Last year I started this blog as a writing exercise and an accountability thing. While I have not followed through on some of the things that I claimed I would do, I did post fifty-two times last year. I am proud of that; I have very much enjoyed it. There seem to be a few people who read this, and it gets me to write. There really isn’t a good reason that this shouldn’t be my place to set my goals. It is public enough that I feel sheepish when I really drop the ball, but I don’t have to worry that the few people who do read this will rise up against me and call me a fraud should I not drink my 32 ounces of water every day.

So let’s get this done. What is it that I want out of this year and myself? What would be my 33 Rulin’s?

  1. Finish writing my book. This is going to be the year.
  2. I am going to drink more water. There, I said it.
  3. My gym membership will be used more. I actually had some great momentum going at one time last year. I need to figure out how to gain that back.
  4. I will watch less television. Dan and I discussed last night that we would do at least one night a week television free.
  5. I am going to learn how to dance – my Christmas present from Dan.
  6. I am going to fit into some of those clothes that I refuse to move out of my closet.
  7. I am going to spend time each morning at work, planning my day.
  8. I am going to clean my office at work and keep it organized and inviting.
  9. I am going to re-up my Mug Club membership because going to lunch at 75th Street every Sunday with Dan is one of the things that makes me happiest.
  10. I am going to learn how to draw Ali’s dog Banjo better so I can write stories about her.
  11. I am going to send fan mail (real postage stamped mail) once a week to someone I admire. I did this a couple years ago where I sent notes to authors of books I read. It was heartwarming how many wrote back and told me how much my note meant.
  12. I will do what I can to make the possibility of us opening a brewpub one day a reality.
  13. I will be a better leader and employee by being more positive and creative.
  14. I want to video chat more with Sam and Ali.
  15. Books – love them. I don’t really have to put it on my list because I will always read them, but I do want to read more! Good lord, there are so many wonderful books. Just yesterday, I got one in the mail that I had to order because Sam wrote me an email about how good it is.
  16. Magazine – love them too! I have not done a good job keeping up with the wonderful print magazines that come into our house each month. I will do better.
  17. Computer – love my computer too, but I spend too much time with it and not enough time with rulin #15 and #16.
  18. Last year I bought the Hugh Acheson cook book and that became my adventure cook book for the year. I didn’t do great with it, but I did okay. I got Girl and Her Pig for  Christmas this year. That’s my rulin there.
  19. The Italy documentation will be completed. I haven’t updated on this, I know, but I will. I am actually doing okay, but I need it on the list to keep me moving.
  20. Be a better gardener. I planted basil last summer and did not make a single jar of pesto. I think one thing that I need to do is figure out a good watering system.
  21. Keep a journal better.
  22. Do the crossword puzzle every day. It keeps your brain fresh!
  23. See my friends more, and be better about setting up times.
  24. More movies. This is one of those things that I really do think that if I put it down, it will make me go see more movies than if I didn’t.
  25. More live music. Ditto rulin #24
  26. Keep up with my Newbery Challenge.
  27. Pick two music albums each month that I really get to know.
  28. Make a photo album of 100 pictures from 2012, and put the 100 photos from 2011 that I ordered last year into an album.
  29. Take more pictures.
  30. Figure out how to start an Etsy shop. We have some ideas that we have been kicking around and doing some stuff on. Time to get real.
  31. Get the attic organized. I made such progress when we got to fill the dumpster, time to make it right.
  32. Bring my guitar out of hiding and play it again.
  33. Keep Deliberate Obfuscation active and fun for me.

Happy new year all! 33 is a lot of rulins, but I am pretty sure that I can keep on task. Nothing here is impossible, and all of it will make it a better year. How are your rulin’s coming along?