|Maxims for the new year|
Wednesday, 3 January 2018
Dream, believe, achieve is emblazoned on my teenager's sweatshirt when she surfaces late morning. Not that there is any rule about squeezing achievements into the early part of the day - the placement of dirty cereal bowls in the dishwasher is generally good enough for me. "That's a nice thought for the new year," I tell her in my cheery voice (she can be a little temperamental before her first slice of toast so I have to tread gently). If only it was that easy, I think quietly to myself.
Life is about striving in one way or another, no more so than at the start of a new year. The slate has been wiped clean, the days are growing longer and we are buoyed up by the belief that a few new numbers on the calendar will make all the difference. If Theresa May can feel chipper about making progress with her Brexit deal (assuming she believes her own rhetoric), then my own small-scale goals should be relatively achievable.
Tuesday, 10 January 2017
Christmas with all its excesses becomes the last stop on the route to self-improvement. This seasonal splurge seems designed to usher in a period of self-disgust, exacerbated by too many puddings / presents / cheese / glasses of Irish cream. As the decorations come down, you long to emerge like a butterfly from the Christmas-chrysalis with a cleaner body and a purer purpose. January inevitably becomes the anointed month to slough off the extra pounds, change your ways and build a brighter, better future.
As human beings, it seems we need structure, if only to keep the messy amorality of life in check. With the start of a new year, resolutions provide a roadmap to a new, improved self. Often such resolutions require discipline and self-denial, but all of us know a little bit of pain is the price you pay for a higher pleasure. Structure equals control over laziness, small addictions (in my case, chocolate) and other character defects.
|Emerging from the excesses of Christmas...|