Resolution(s)

Is it too late to make a New Year’s resolution? I say, no! Anytime is good time to resolve to make your life better!

I said last time that I want to make my resolutions this year positive and specific. First, I want to write another screenplay. I finished the one I started last year, but now I am doing a major revision of one section of it. So that is my resolution: finish this revision by the end of February, and then finish a second screenplay by the end of the year. It does me a lot of good to have a writing project to work on. Of course I would love to sell a screenplay, but right now it’s more about giving my brain something to chew on.

I swear a lot of the reason I drank was to try to shut up my brain. This is better: distracting it.

My next resolution isn’t too exciting, but it is to pay off our car early. We owe a little less than $6000 on it now, and paying it off early will do very nice things for our monthly budget. When we do that, we can start building up an emergency fund. This is something that every finance book recommends, and we always seem to find something else to do with our money. This might be a goal that will happen more in 2016, but I’m earmarking the car payment amount, as soon as the car is paid off, to go right into funding an emergency savings account – at a separate bank.

I try to check in with my financial picture once in year in January. Last year my resolution was to start keeping a monthly budget, down to the last dollar. I did this, and will continue doing it this year.

My other news is that I got diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease, which is an autoimmune disease where your body attacks your thyroid. I put on nine pounds last year, so my doctor ordered some thyroid tests. (And here I thought it was just because I started eating ice cream again!) I am taking medication for it, and am pondering making some dietary changes as well. Based on my online research (which I know can be flawed!), an anti-inflammatory diet (mostly, no sugar or gluten) can be a good diet for people with Hashimoto’s. I have to say, I’m still in the planning stages here. 🙂 The only change I’ve made so far is to give up my granola for breakfast in favor of more protein/fat based breakfasts, with some veggies or fruit:  veggie omelets, or cottage cheese with banana, or unsweetened yogurt with blueberries mixed in.

And to anyone reading this who is pondering quitting drinking for your New Year’s resolution: GO FOR IT! I promise you won’t regret it!

Low hanging fruit

Willpower is a limited resource; don’t overwhelm it.

This is one thing I have learned in my 292 non-drinking days.  In other words, when you’re trying to give up alcohol, let yourself indulge in other ways.  As I talked about here, I gave up sugar and white flour for awhile last year.  I did feel good when I did that, but it got to be too much.  Too much self-denial.

But, I feel ready to make some other changes in my life.  So this week I have made a (late) New Year’s resolution.  It’s to do all the healthy things for my body that I enjoy.  I love taking walks, so I am going to do more of that.  Going to the gym helps me clear my head, so I am going to go when I can, but only for that reason.  Not to lose ten pounds.

I am going to drink more water.  Who doesn’t like a nice, cold glass of ice water?  I’m going to eat more sardines (for the Omega-3s!) because I’m one of those strange people that really likes sardines.  I’m going to eat all the fruits and vegetables that I like.

At the same time, I am going to continue to eat dessert when I want it, eat my apples with gobs of peanut butter (this is a major weakness), drink diet soda and lots of coffee, take the elevator instead of the stairs, and veg out on the couch playing Angry Birds when I want to.  And I won’t kick myself for it either.

Above all, I want to be kind to myself.  Kind to my body, kind to my brain and my emotions, kind to my overstretched willpower.  They’ve all served me well these last 292 days.

My mantra for this is the title of this post:  low hanging fruit.