Happy New Year! Welcome 2010!

I love to make New Year’s Resolutions. They’re something I look forward to making every year, and I’ve made them for the past 15 or 20 years.

This year I’ve made some serious resolutions (see below), but I wanted to figure out how to keep them. Last year I was only able to keep one of my resolutions: to give more to charity. In 2009 I gave money to the following charities:

  1. January: Heifer International
  2. February: Sanctuary for Families
  3. March: Shriner’s Hospitals
  4. April: Women for Women International (I sponsored a woman in Nigeria)
  5. May: Kiva
  6. June: Save the Children & MoMA (membership)
  7. July: Charity: Water
  8. August: Adopt-a-Platoon
  9. October: Minds Matter (I started working with the Writing & Critical Thinking program)
  10. November: Women for Women International
  11. December: Brooklyn Academy of Music (membership)

Giving to charity every month has honestly made giving to charity a habit, which, according to many people, seems to be the key to making and keeping resolutions. To keep this particular resolution, I depended on the most important tool in my life: my Little Otsu Planner. I use Vol. 2, which, heartbreakingly seems to be either sold out or (gasp!) out of print. Every month I wrote in my planner the charity I gave to and the amount given. Writing it down really made me feel like I had done something worthwhile that month, and I loved looking back over the year and seeing those special entries. (The other thing that my Little Otsu Planner is essential for is tracking migraines. My neurologist is definitely a fan.)

This year, to differentiate LOP 2009, from LOP 2010, I’ve reached back to my school days and created a book cover from a photo in an Italian magazine I found. This photo will define 2010!

This year is obviously going to be very sexy…

Since I’ve successfully accomplished one resolution (which I’m hoping to continue in the new year), I’ve decided to track the progress of my 2010 resolutions on this blog and other places. It seems that “accountability” is another aspect of keeping resolutions that turns out to be absolutely vital.

If you’re making resolutions and want a little help, here are a few sites that provide some helpful advice:

So, without futher ado, this year greenapril resolves to:

  1. Become a regular exerciser (I’d like to be up to 5 times a week by the end of the year).
  2. Clean my desk and keep it clear for my many creative projects.
  3. Make three new friends.
  4. Become an early riser (between 6:00 and 6:30). (I wake up early quite frequently, but I wouldn’t say that it’s a habit.)
  5. Make at least one postcard and read at least two books a month. (These are things that I love to do, but rarely find time for.)
  6. Cook at least three times a week. (This may be something that needs working up to.)

As you can see, many of my resolutions this year revolve around making time to do the things I love. Because I have two wonderful but time-intensive jobs, I rarely make time to do the things that I actually enjoy. Actually, I waste a lot of time thinking about the work I should be doing and procrastinating by, say, watching TV, when I could be spending that time doing something more productive.

If I can accomplish these things by December, it will have been a very productive year. Hooray for 2010!