I don't typically do resolutions. Not exactly, anyway. I try to use the end of one year/beginning of the next to think of ways I can do things better or differently (or eliminate or add some things). But coming up with a list of (lofty) things almost always leads to some disappointment or failure.
Last year (in late January, in fact), I decided to write two thank-you notes per month. Unfortunately, I did not quite achieve that goal, but I did send out notes of appreciation in instances when I might not have normally. And times when, for whatever reason, I did not put pen to paper, I at least made sure I thanked people via the phone or email. Back in December, I called my aunt to thank her for the birthday card she sent me. She said she was touched that I would take the time to say thanks for a card when most people would not think to do that. I told her at my age, I hardly get any cards, so I was appreciative. I also sent that same aunt a thank-you note a few weeks later for opening her home to me and the kid to spend time with her daughters and their families when she and my uncle were not even there. I think it is nice to get unexpected "happy" mail. And I would still like to send thank-you notes in unexpected situations. But I want to do something different this year, even if it is a little selfish: I want to count my blessings and appreciate what I have more than what I normally do.
To that end, and sort of stealing from an idea I read on Facebook, I am writing down good/positive things that happened in a particular day and placing them in a shoebox, the "Good Things" box as I will call it. At the end of 2013, I should have a lot of slips of paper (and with any luck, several shoeboxes full of them). I don't expect to have something to write down every day, but I am hopeful with my glass-half-full attitude, I can come close. So far, on the first day of 2013, I spent the afternoon with a good friend and her family, which was the first thing to go into the box. I also talked to my little brother, my mom, my older brother, and my dad, in that order, which is a pretty good way to start off the year. Today, J and I had a nice girls lunch out, and we managed to get all the groceries I could remember into our cart and in the checkout line at Walmart in 12 minutes flat. Those things made it into the box as well.
There are many other things I can and should do better and differently. And if any of those come to pass, I will probably write about them here. For now, I am going to attempt this sort-of resolution. Because even though life is not perfect, and this world can be a pretty screwed-up place, there are still many things to be thankful for and appreciative of. Wish me luck! And I hope you too can find something good/positive daily or almost so.