A Tiny Tale of Terror or How to Train Your Resolutions

Many of you will innocently make resolutions for 2016 not realizing the kind of monsters they will become or the terror they will wreak. Be forewarned. This is not a tale for the faint of heart. This could happen to you.

On the first day of the year, many of us make a list comprised of all the goals we would like to accomplish. At that moment, our New Year’s resolutions are born. We point them in the right direction with a compass and strict orders to focus on the path and most of us don’t give them another thought. We assume they will find their way to achieving our goals by the end of the year. Sometimes they have other ideas.

new resolutions 2016

Many lose their way while meandering through the early months of the year without a care or a clue. Being young, restless and irresponsible they take breaks, play games, and socialize since they have an entire year to cross the finish line.

By May, the trail is undistinguishable. Covered by undergrowth and disguised with rich and colorful flora and fauna, they play hide and seek. They still don’t worry about the January 1st deadline since they still have so much time.

As the forest grows around them, a verdant canopy spreads overhead and spring days stretch into summer. In July, sparkly things streak through the sky distracting those resolutions again.

“Look! Sparkly things!”

By the time they find the path, the days have grown shorter and fall leaves swirl down to the forest floor. The resolutions grow older and wiser, but their joints ache with the change in seasons. They realize they’ve wasted time by engaging in frivolity. Their shadows stretch across the frozen ground. Once young and hopeful, they have become ancient, arthritic, and decrepit.

In November, we wake in the middle of the night to their wailing screams of terror. “We’ll never finish our goals this year!” they howl. They grip our hearts and turn our blood icy cold in panic. How did this happen? We lay awake for hours wondering what went wrong. After another sleepless night, they haunt us during the day with the same worry. “We’re running out of time. The holidays will arrive sooooooon…”

old resolutions fade

They drag their hollow brittle bones through December. We avoid glancing at their festering wart and mole-covered skin. When they breathe down our necks with the most foul and putrid breath, our eyes water.

As the last seconds of the year draw to a close, they turn to ash and blow away in the north wind.

“So long sucker!” they whisper through the skeletal trees.

The end…. of 2015

Did your innocent little resolutions became monsters in 2015? What can you do to prevent that from happening again this year?

Simple. Don’t feed them so much time. They binge on time for breakfast, fritter it away for lunch and swallow what’s left for dinner.

A WILD DECLARATION

From herein and forthwith, New Year’s resolutions will be called: 

12 MONTH’S RESOLUTIONS.

Do you feel the difference? Oh, sure. You’re thinking, “That’s a lot more work. Now I have to make 12 lists of goals instead of one.”

Ask yourself: Do you really want to make these changes? DO YOU?? Then break them down into smaller treks.

“You are more likely to accomplish the goal of walking three miles a day, than to declare you will walk a thousand by the end of next year.”

—Me

  • Make a list of small goals every day, week, and month.
  • Complete a goal and check it off your list.
  • Celebrate! Dance!
  • Post a list of accomplishments above your workspace. Even that is extra work, but the reminder will keep you plodding forward.
  • Plan breaks into your schedule. Get outside every day and stretch your creative brain and cramped muscles. You deserve it.
  • Rinse.
  • Repeat 364 times.

Remember, if you want to keep your resolutions from running wild, you have to keep them leashed and on the path so there won’t be any meandering. Make a roadmap for they are directionally challenged and sparkly things will distract them along the way. Sure it will mean more work and you will have to make a plan every day, but remember, work hard, play hard.

By the end of next year, you will be proud as you reach the end of the trail with young, vibrant, and accomplished goals in hand.

What do you think? Are your resolutions irresponsible? Do they need to be reined in? Do you avoid making any at all cost?

For more funny posts, click HERE!

88 thoughts on “A Tiny Tale of Terror or How to Train Your Resolutions

  1. Well said, Susie! Also LOVE the illustrations. Rather than resolutions or goals, I set intentions. Somehow the slight difference in the meaning of the word gives me a bit more wiggle room. In general, I’m pretty happy with my life but I do like to do a year in review and then decide on some intentions for the coming year (which Peter and I did over a lovely dinner last night.) My intentions give me a few compass settings to negotiate that winding trail but allow me to explore interesting forks in said trail without feeling like I have missed the signposts. I’m always looking for opportunities not to beat myself up… 🙂

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    • That’s a great idea!
      I will probably do both. I want to write a few books and another screenplay this year. If it makes my list of things to do, I’ll crank them out. Otherwise, time slips into the fritter chamber and is consumed. When the clock reads 6:00, I hear a long burp coming from one of those irresponsible resolutions. 🙂
      Happy New Year to you!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post! I like the idea of monthly and/or daily goals. I would have a better chance that way of remembering that I even have goals. And I’m glad to see that I’m not the only one who quotes myself. Happy New Year!

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    • Ha! I decided that tagging myself as “me” was less obnoxious than Wild Rider. Somehow talking about myself in the third person creeps me out. I could see the eyes rolling.

      I’m so glad you are going to join me in making short-term goals. This post came about when I gave myself a deadline for finding an agent. I won’t dink around with it for an entire year. I really love writing, not querying and have quite a few projects lined up!
      Happy New Year, Maggie!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I’ve come up with a sure-fire method for successful resolutions. I make them post annum. I determine what goals I achieved during the previous year and make them my resolutions for that year. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m working on my list for 2015.

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  4. I live ina massive 22 room house with no housekeeper. As a writer housecleaning is on the bottom of my list as I am the sole inhabitant. But something struck me when I got the flu 1.5 weeks ago.. I am cleaning LOLOLOL > It’s not like it was bad but the dust was there. Sometimes things just take over your mindset. Happy New year…
    (Riff Raff) With a bit of a mind flip…

    (Magenta) You’re into a time slip…

    (Riff Raff) And nothing can ever be the same.

    (Magenta) You’re spaced out on sensation.

    (Riff Raff) Like you’re under sedation.

    (Guests) Let’s do the Time Warp again.
    Let’s do the Time Warp again.

    Read more: Rocky Horror Picture Show – The Time Warp Lyrics | MetroLyrics

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    • With a jump to the left…..
      I hope you’re feeling better now. The flu is no fun at all. Sometimes when I’m sleepy, I get a lot done since I don’t think or talk myself out of it! Go you! I have all my Christmas to take down and tons of dust which has accumulated with it.
      Happy New Year!

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    • I met another blogger who chooses one word for the year. I think that’s a GREAT idea!
      In my life before writing, I could’ve cared less about resolutions. Now that I’m writing books and screenplays, I have to plan my year and structure my time. We’ll see how it goes!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Susie, I agree My promise usually end up broken and destroyed and I feel guilt and revert to my old behavior. Not good. I usually reserve my ‘resolutions’ for summer break, but this year I’m breaking the chain, sort of. I like your reminders and I’ll be incorporating them into daily routine and rituals. Have a Happy New Year and many happy returns. Peace.

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    • That’s great Clay! Daily routine is everything. I get the most work done when it’s on some kind of list. It takes 3 weeks to get into a habit, so hopefully I’lll be hitting my structured stride by the end of January! Happy New Year and peace to you!

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  6. Honestly I’m not sure I’ve ever actually made a NY resolution where I really thought it out, wrote it down, etc. I think it’s better to make changes throughout the year. Too much pressure in January when most of us are barely recovering from the previous months festivities!

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    • I agree about pressure and love your idea of making changes throughout the year.
      My resolutions are work (writing) related. Sure, I would love to get into great shape and plan to be a hard-body by summer, make a lot of new friends, and learn a ton this year. Ha! But I came up with this post after realizing querying agents is a time-consuming process. I decided to go for it until June, reviewing my choices for publication halfway through the year rather than dinking around until next January. In the meantime, I’ve got other projects in the works. I am super psyched!
      Happy New Year, my musical friend!

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Happy New Year, Susie. I don’t make resolutions, but I did have a goal in 2015, which I appear to have achieved (it’s still about a month away from completion). Had I known a year ago that that goal would be equal to entering the seven circles of Hell, it would blast a hole through my routine and nearly cause me to lose the little that’s left of my mind, I probably would not have pursued it. Now that we’re in 2016, I will probably think that it was the best thing I have ever done in my life. At least that’s what Milton and my siblings are insisting.

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    • Happy New Year, V! It is so great to “see” you!!! The seven circles of hell do not sound like fun at all. We are up in our gutted mountain house in our own seven circles. We started a remodel at the craziest time. Luckily, everyone seems to be in a big hurry to finish and we just started! There is so much to do and a lot of decisions to make, but it will be amazing when it is done.
      Are you planning to blog about the seven circles?

      Liked by 1 person

      • I so wish I could blog about this, the absolute Lamest Adventure of my entire life, Susie! But, I have gained admittance into a rarefied club, so I have to muzzle the snark about what I endured to gain entry into where I’m going. It is to my advantage not to ruffle feathers so the mute button is pressed on the details. Getting there has not only cost me time off my life, but my siblings, Milton and my boss have all declared that it has shaved time off of theirs. My colleagues were also hit with a fair amount of shrapnel. The word “unbelievable” has been said in relation to me and this pursuit easily a thousand times. Even my own real estate broker, someone I now consider a friend, was frequently astounded. Home ownership in Manhattan is a blood sport with its own set of rules that are unlike anyplace else on planet earth. Your head would spin if you knew what one has to endure to get renovations approved. But that, I cannot get into. There’s a code of silence on those details. This entire experience personifies New York City being a tough town and why only 30% own and everyone else rents. No one in their right mind wants to take on this beast! Hopefully, I will get through the weeks ahead and finally move in and move on.

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        • FANTASTIC! If you are ever in a brave place, it would make a great story. There was a very lame film released about the same topic with Morgan Freeman and Diane Keaton. If you haven’t seen it, you might be amused. It sound very stressful like a roller coaster ride in complete darkness. I’m glad you are counting the days until you move in. Only then, will it feel real, grasshopper.

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          • Writing about that has nothing to do with being in a brave place. I would have to be in an insane place. I don’t want to offend anyone. I want to remain on everyone’s good side. It’s very political.

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  8. I never make New Year’s resolutions. My birthday is in mid-January. I KNOW I will have cake and wine. I know I will indulge. So I don’t even try because that would set me up for failure. By the time my birthday comes around, nobody is talking about them any more.

    THIS is the only advantage to having a January birthday. And I will take what I can get out of it!

    Happy, healthy New Year for you Susie!

    Like

    • Ha! I’m not including working out or dieting in my resolutions. even though I plan to get in shape. Every time I diet, I gain weight. No lie. 🙂
      Happy almost birthday to you, Elyse! Happy New Year too!
      Thanks for the health wishes. That’s the plan!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I love examining the psychology behind resolutions. I’ve gotten much better at setting realistic goals by being very specific and making sure the goals match the structure of the year. I agree that it’s pretty hard to stay focused on a New Year’s resolution and prefer to set 12 month resolutions or 52 week resolutions.

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    • Most years, I really feel like I’m starting fresh. This year, I really want to finish some novel and screenwriting projects. I’ve set some deadlines and will see how it goes. I bet you have a lot of projects too! A new YouTube video, perhaps???
      Happy New Year!

      Like

  10. Attainable goals are more plausible then rash and/or impossible feats to climb. Not that the latter isn’t reasonable or even doable. History has shown us all that humans are capable of incredible feats. But why snuff out the flame of hope in human nature rather than taking one piece of kindling at a time in order to build the brightest flame of all. I am happy to say that Mathair and I have set very selfless reasonable goals that will be reached before the end of 2016. Have a great New Year, Susie. Awesome post.

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    • Thanks so much, Inion! It’s always great to see you. I hope you reach all of your goals and have a spectacular 2016!
      I agree that breaking them down into “kindling” will make for a wonderful bonfire at the end of the year. Weenie roast or marshmallow toast? Either way, here’s to a great year! *clink*

      Like

  11. Many people make the same resolutions every year – lose weight, get fitter, get more organized, stop smoking/drinking, etc, and I don’t know why they imagine that the next year will be different if they have failed every other year before. The key is a change in approach, and that’s what you’re advocating here, so hurrah to that! The traditional idea of goal setting doesn’t really work for me, but it’s all about finding what does and then putting it into practice. Happy 2016 Susie!

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    • Approach is everything! I think it takes a change in lifestyle and then 21 days to make it a habit. We’ll see….
      Funny thing. I checked out my horoscope yesterday. It was all about making plans, setting short-term goals and grounding myself by checking off lists to make me feel like I’m accomplishing something during the year. NO LIE! Ha! It was pretty much my blog post, but with a bunch of planets thrown in to make it sound all astrological. 🙂
      Happy New Year, Vanessa-Jane!

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Wise words. One of the reasons I don’t tend to make resolutions is because they’re quickly forgotten as your wonderful (and witty!) blog post points out. But setting short-term goals is more doable and ultimately more effective. Happy New Year to you, Susie!

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    • Thanks so much, Carrie! I have some super-sized short-term goals this year and wanted to get them on a calendar. That’s what gave birth to the post.
      Last night, I checked out a couple of Aries’ horoscopes for the year and cracked up laughing. They suggested using a calendar and mapping out a year with short term goals to keep me feeling like I’m accomplishing something. Ha! How weird is that?
      Happy New Year, Carrie!

      Liked by 1 person

    • I am so excited for you! I think the short-term goals will work. I have so much I want to accomplish this year and can only do it with a plan and in small bites. Good luck and let me know how it goes!
      I’m off to Barnes and Noble tomorrow to buy a planner.
      Happy New Year to you!

      Like

  13. We work backwards from, ‘where would we like to be this time next year,’ and break it down into bite-able chunks. That was we get about a 65% – 75% success rate. It’s worked, so far! 😀

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    • I am so glad to hear that! It’s exactly what I am going to do. I think this works for list-making goal junkies like myself. Time will tell. 🙂
      Happy New Year to you! May 100% of your goals be reached this year!

      Like

  14. My 2015 resolutions included going rock climbing and actually not dying, and I did that. I resolved to make a new friend, and I passed that one with flying colors because I made a few new friends. And lastly, I resolved not to get hit by a bus.

    I’m golden. 🙂

    Like

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  20. 2016 is almost over but I just found you. I do and sometime I don’t make resolutions. I do make priorities annually and try to stick with them for a year, then revise in the following year. There are a couple things seem to hugh to tackle, so I procrastinate. So I’ll read your “Crush Procrastination” to get inspiration. Thank you.

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