I was looking through one of my old journals and found my “resolutions” for 2000, which were more or less short-term and far reaching goals. At twenty, I knew what I needed to do to make my life what it was “supposed to be”. Looking back on my set of resolutions, I could definitely benefit from giving these another shot … and also wondering what life could have been like, had I given these the effort that they deserved back then.

Here they are (were?):

I will finish this semester with high grades and graduate with over a 3.0 (Surprisingly, I did this one. Once I realized, post-freshman year, that attending class definitely helped my grades, my GPA took a turn for the better.)

I won’t procrastinate on big school projects. (I doubt I accomplished this one. I could change that to “I won’t procrastinate on big work projects” or “I won’t procrastinate. I consider extreme procrastination one of my talents, actually.)

I will read more interesting things. (I guess I’ve done that. I probably should have defined the word “interesting.” Something tells me that my intent here was to read more intellectual and worthy books, rather than what I generally read. I guess I can assume I did this, but it’s certainly not a consistent success. Can US Weekly be considered “interesting”? Sure.)

I will learn to surf better. (Nope, never happened. I suck as much as I did back then. Maybe a year in Costa Rica would help that … hey, you can’t accomplish goals without the proper equipment.)

I will try new foods and learn to cook new things. (This was before I found out that I was allergic to 85% of foods. I did learn to cook a lot of things … I just can’t eat most of them. I would be remiss to say I’m an adventurous eater, though.)

I will be better with my money. (Yep, it was possible. I actually became considerably worse with my money. This one should actually go to the very top of the ’08 resolutions. Definitely.)

I will pay all of my bills when I get them. (Pretty good with this one … I guess after college I recognized that it wasn’t really optional.)

I will keep sending out resumes and cover letters – when I graduate, I either want a good marketing job or to work in Charleston. (I actually pulled off both of these in 2001 – I had the sports marketing job of my dreams … or so I thought … in Charleston.)

I will eventually have a good marketing job, hopefully with a sport team or surfing company. (At that point, the dream life was to work for Quiksilver. Two years of mediocre wages and insane hours in baseball brought me back to reality on that one.)

I will write more creative writing. (Argh, this one gets me every time. It is honestly my only true “goal” in life … yet I never focus enough to do it. Keep this one on the list.)

I will pay off a lot of my credit card debt and not get it high again. (So I didn’t do this the first time around – I definitely made it much, much worse. But then I paid off most of it and I’m doing a decent job not doing it again. But again, there’s always room for improvement. This one is at the top of the ’08 resolutions.)

I will travel more and try different things. (The problem here is that this resolution was in direct conflict with the one above it. Oh, I traveled more. I’m great at traveling … one of the best you’ll ever meet. Unfortunately, I suck at doing it in cost-effective ways. Sadly, this one can’t go on the ’08 list. I’ll keep the “try different things” one, but they’ll have to be of the local and cheap variety.)

I will stick to my exercise program and get a flatter stomach. (Yes, I really listed this as a goal, and no, I totally didn’t do it. The best exercise program I ever stuck with came in 2003 and 2004. I’ll put this one back on the list, though.)

I will try to lose five pounds. (Clearly, I didn’t accomplish this at that time. I did weigh like 123 when I waited tables, but that was only because I couldn’t afford food and was living on Saltines, because they were the only free thing we could eat at the restaurant. I’ll relist this one for ’08 and put a “1” in front of that “five”.)

I will swim, rollerblade, and surf more. (I just swam laps for the first time since college the other day. It’s an actual realistic goal for ’08. Rollerblading – did a bunch of that this summer. Surfing? I live across the street from the beach, but I’m too much of a baby to go in the cold NY ocean. I’ll put that one back on the list when I move to Hawaii some day.)

I will get more definition in my arms and become stronger. (Seriously, it’s no wonder I didn’t accomplish these goals. I doubt I could have listed more specific things that would be easier to forget. I also must have been making this list while looking in a mirror. There is no way I could have realized all of the ways my body seemed to suck at the time otherwise.)

I will try to eat less junk food and fast food. (Almost totally gave up fast food. It really has no appeal anymore, and I think its only appeal back then was the convenience and price. Junk food … eh … I go through phases on that one. I think this could go on the ’08 list.)

I won’t go over *** pounds and will continue to eat better. (I’m totally not filling in the blank there. I’m only like five pounds over that, but clearly, if that number horrified me enough to create a resolution around it, I never anticipated this weight.)

I’ll try to get past *** and not talk to him anymore. (Again, not filling in the blank, but it was an ex at the time, and clearly, this was the best resolution I could have made. We did stop talking and I think it made every day a little better at the time.)

I’ll only give myself to people who want me and have time for me. (This one sounds really depressing. Geez. I think this is one for everyone, though … there are definitely people out there who deserve you more than others.)

I won’t waste my time on people who don’t treat me how I deserve to be treated. (This is actually my 1 goal for 2008. It’s up there with the money/credit cards thing, but for other reasons.I kind of wish I had figured out how to do this one back in 2000. Better late than never, I guess.)

I will remember what kind of person I like to be, not what kind of person I think people like me to be. (Again, this one is pretty solid. I feel bad that I made this a resolution and couldn’t just accept it without trying.)

I won’t leave my happiness in the hands of others – it’s my responsibility. (If I had a dollar every time I tried to tell myself this, I wouldn’t have to worry about how I spent my money. Put it on the ’08 list.)

2008 is right around the corner … and I’m ready for a new year. I’m not sure why the changing of one digit always makes it feel like a fresh start. My expectations for this year are high, but not unreasonable. I’m focusing on the big picture – being healthy, being happy and being the best version of myself that I can be. In doing so, I’m sure I can accomplish (most of) the minutiae I listed back in 2000.

Happy New Year to all … cheers. I hope your 2008 is the best it can possibly be.

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