18 New Year’s Resolutions Ending With: Live The New Year One New Day at a Time.

About to Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) with some of my crew, December 2014.

About to Stand Up Paddleboard (SUP) with some of my crew, December 2014.

What’s your word for 2015? Mine is joy. I plan to seek joy each day. We think our time on the planet is limitless but there are only a certain number of hours left. Which is why I spent one of my last days of 2014 going out on a stand up paddle board with some of our crew.

I’d like this year to be a string of memorable days. So my new year’s resolution is to make each day count.  Here are some of the other things I hope to do:

1. Stay positive. My old habit? I used to always point out what was wrong with the picture rather than what was right. I have to work hard to get the critic inside me to shut up.

2. Seek joy. And more joy.  I no longer ascribe to that notion that life is for suffering. And I don’t get any extra points for being a martyr.

3. Stop to smell a blossom, to watch the birds, to listen to the wind rustle through the trees.

4. I won’t let my pride prevent me from admitting I’m wrong and saying I’m sorry first. So many times I’ve held onto that idea, “The other person should say sorry first,” which is a waste of time and so silly. Nations, too, can start racing to make amends first.

5. Reach out to someone I don’t think I like and making her/him a friend. Okay, maybe not a close friend, but an acquaintance, nonetheless.

6. Not reacting to every rude/insensitive/dumb comment thrown my way. I won’t give away my poise and dignity so easily.

7. Stop hitting the rewind button and replaying terrible/hurtful scenes in my head. And stop trying to come up with that brilliant line that I should have said at the time. The scene is over. Done. Resentment only poisons our own well. I want to fill my brain with positive images and thoughts.

8. Let go of futile regrets. Auld lang syne, which translates roughly as, “old long since” or “time goes by.” (I never knew that either!) The statute of limitations ended at midnight. It is so old. It is gone.

9. Reminding myself that envy is a hostile form of self-pity. And every time I go there, to make a gratitude list, beginning with A and going to Z, of all I have to be thankful for.DCIM100MEDIA

19, Emotional control trumps situational control. If I lose it, I lose it. If I stay in control of myself, the situation doesn’t turn into a power struggle. I win if I keep myself in check.

11. I can’t control my loved ones. Or change them. All I can do is keep loving them without judging them. I can practice live and let live.

12. Even mental criticism of other people is harmful energy that blocks joy.

13. Prayers are positive energy. They’re not guaranteed to give me what I want but it’s a way of creating good karma.

14. I can face any problem that comes my way without getting so overwhelmed that I slip into paralysis, confusion, self-pity and/or depression. I can make a list of what I need to do and go about doing those things, following simple steps, each day.

15. I can avoid people who pull me down. Oh yeah. I can’t save them. I can’t rescue anyone but myself. I won’t help them by jumping into the boat of misery with them. And if they make me feel bad because I feel good, then they belong in my No Friend Zone.

16. I can’t take care of anyone else unless I take care of myself. And I do this by filling my own well. Going out on the paddle board spur of the moment was one way I filled my own well. Standing on water gave me new perspective. If anything gives me new perspective, it is thinking about our tiny place in the universe. (Check out Phil Plait’s article with videos of the earth here for more perspective.)

17. I can say no to people I love. They might accuse me of not loving them. Then I can say, “Oh no, if it is because I love you that I am not saying yes.”

18. How to change my life? By living this new year one new day at a time.

About dianabletter

Diana Bletter is the author of several books, including The Invisible Thread: A Portrait of Jewish American Women (with photographs by Lori Grinker), shortlisted for a National Jewish Book Award. Her novel, A Remarkable Kindness, (HarperCollins) was published in 2015. She is the First Prize Winner of Moment Magazine's 2019 Fiction Contest. Her work has appeared in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, tabletmag, Glamour, The Forward, The North American Review, Times of Israel, and is a reporter for Israel21C, and many other publications. She is author of Big Up Yourself: It's About Time You Like Being You and The Mom Who Took off On Her Motorcycle, a memoir of her 10,000-mile motorcycle trip to Alaska and back to New York. She lives in a small beach village in Western Galilee, Israel, with her husband and family. She is a member of the local hevra kadisha, the burial circle, and a Muslim-Jewish-Christian-Druze women's group in the nearby town of Akko. And, she likes snowboarding and climbing trees.
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22 Responses to 18 New Year’s Resolutions Ending With: Live The New Year One New Day at a Time.

  1. Rhonda Blender says:

    Happy Birthday Diana!! My birthday is today. I love these resolutions so much, they are so applicable to me that I’m going to print this list out (I might add 2-3 of my own to it although you’ve really covered my territory for me!). Thank you for all the great posts you’ve written this year…I’ve benefited from each one. I wish you a wonderful birthday and a happy, healthy, professionally productive and meaningful year ahead. I’m always grateful that I’ve made it successfully through any challenges of the past year and lived to see this next time of my life. Best wishes and a celebratory birthday to you!!!!!!!!!

  2. Rhonda says:

    I love this!!! I am doing it w u!! Also I thought u were turning 58 mid January? I miss u. We can do this together with a sticker chart. Joy one day a a time. When u fulfill the day of being joyous u get a sticker. Lol

    Rhonda Cohen


  3. Tom Scott says:

    Happy Birthday Diana! Great list. Thanks for sharing and have a Joyful new year

  4. Elyse Brown says:

    Wonderful list, Diana; thanks for the inspiration. Happy Birthday and Happy New Year. May it be a healthy one full of peace and contentment, fulfillment and joy.

    • dianabletter says:

      Thank you Elyse, I hope you are doing OK and that this new year is for you also one filled with health and happiness.

  5. juliabarrett says:

    Happy birthday and Happy New Year. Eighteen – l’chaim!

  6. ajk says:

    Happy Birthday and wonderfully said though my own assessment is that life is a mixture of joy and suffering and the best thing to do is to concentrate on and appreciate the joyful times (I’m giving up punctuation for the new year 🙂

    • dianabletter says:

      Throw out all punctuation
      We can make it like a poem anyway
      Life is a mix of all things as you said and all we can do is focus on the good
      Thank you

  7. Anonymous says:

    What I love about you, is that you are a woman of action! Creating joy! What a great way to end the year, and start the new one! Keep on celebrating and have a very Happy Birthday!

  8. Cynthia says:

    I will read and reread this Chapter, everyday, a day at a time.
    I love this’

  9. Pam Huggins says:

    Happy Birthday and Happy New Year! Yay!!! 🙂

    • dianabletter says:

      Hi Pam, My bad to everyone including you who wished me happy birthday! I was TRYING to say that it feels like a few hours until I’ll be 60 but I still have 2 weeks and 2 days until then. So all of you now get a FREE PASS and DO NOT have to wish my happy birthday in January! I apologize for my lack of stellar editing skills…Meanwhile, HAPPY NEW YEAR to you! Keep creating your wonderful drawings and humor!

  10. Diana, your 18 tips for 2015 are wonderful. My word for 2015 is “No Fear”. Your posts are always so uplifting and encouraging. 🙂

  11. P.S. Happy belated birthday. 🙂

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