“Do not be lured into wildly optimistic buys for non-existent occasions” Mrs Exeter, Vogue, 1952
I spent my first day back at work busily procrastinating at my desk. Distractions included: the usual social media suspects; taking lunch while watching “Loose Women”; leafing through the latest issue of “Vogue” and pottering aimlessly around the house.
As each New Year arrives I am usually overwhelmed by an awareness of endless possibilities that generally outweigh my post-festivity energy levels. This year I am emerging from a full two-week break of over indulgence and under-activity – stuffed full of food, and the latest Soap plots. And yet, my optimism and hopefulness drive me to make New Year’s resolutions yet again. Checking the list of commitments I made to myself last year I note that I’m still the wrong side of 9 stone, haven’t finished a novel, got my finances in order, run a marathon or climbed Mt Kilimanjaro. However, I am mindful that this year needs to be different. I am my own boss now and so the term “self motivated” that over the years I so readily bandied around my CV and job applications must be tested. This would usually suggest that I need to take stock and set myself some goals, visualise myself accepting awards, walking the red carpet or in witty conversation with the host of some sophisticated literary event. But there’s the rub. Those goals we each set ourselves can sometimes be like those false summits on a walking holiday – each push to the top ends in disappointment, exhaustion and more blisters. Yes, it is good to have goals and ambitions but for me that can result in giving up or changing course. And so I need to change my thinking.On difficult treks or those days when going for my usual run feels like torture, all I can do is take one step at a time.Over the years I have met many people who appear to have achieved their ambitions – starting their own businesses, writing novels, retraining or pursuing a sport or interest. These are not always the most talented souls, often what marks them out is that they just get on with things – they have the discipline to just keep doing stuff.
So that’s my resolution this year. Just Do It!