Days ago—aka one single day ago—we were all riding the holiday party train, high on sugar and entertainment binges. And now, somehow, we’ve arrived at January 2nd, the unofficial/official DO EVERYTHING BETTER day.
Perhaps you, like me, were ready to exit the holiday party train. You can only live in a world built on a foundation of whipped cream for so long. But it’s a little bit of a shock to the system to throw the brakes on that train and jump on board the new train pulling into the station, the one so bright and shiny it’s a little bit blinding. The January train is for Big Goals and Starting Over and, mostly, Unrealistic Expectations.
I’m usually tempted to board this train. Actually, I almost always board this train. Every single year I see it coming and think, “Here it comes! This is my chance! Clearly the ways I failed yesterday and the days before won’t follow me into today and the days to follow!”
And then, inevitably, I’m the same person with the same strengths and the same flaws. Only now I’m one day older and no wiser, because why do I keep getting on this dumb train???
As Joey says in his milk carton commercial, “There’s gotta be a better way!” I’ve tried color-coded spreadsheets with deadlines and checkpoints. I’ve tried the Frozen method of “Let it go! Let it goooooo!” and not planned anything at all. Neither has worked, because extremes.
I know there’s a middle ground somewhere. There’s a slant route for making progress toward the kind of life I want to live. I don’t know what that route is yet, but I know it’s not on board the January Crazy Train. That train crashes to a halt in, like, 72 hours or less.
So here’s what I’m going to do. Today, I’m writing this post and publishing it with very little time to second guess it because I know my one non-negotiable goal for this year is to actually write things. I’m buying seeds from Floret Farms because in my Most Ideal Life I am the type of person who has a beautiful garden. I’m going to keep listening to Christmas music because I’m not ready to be done yet. Tonight I’m going to yoga because I finally found a class I like and exercise is a great idea.
Basically, I’m doing things that make sense. I want to revisit all of my hopes and dreams for 2019, but not today. I need an approach to the new year that is less zero-to-sixty and more zero-to-30ish.
If this approach sounds good to you too, you’re welcome to join me on the in-between train. Tom Hanks isn’t serving us hot chocolate, but Ingrid Michaelson is still singing and we have salads and smoothies and also peppermint bark. We’re not taking anything too seriously. We’re remembering that the entire year is not determined over the course of this one week. We’re moving forward, albeit slowly, and enjoying where we already are.
Time out. We’re running the slant. That’s basically what I just took 500 words to describe.
Good grief. Did you see this coming 250 words ago??? Clearly, I did not. I’m really on top of this whole running the slant thing, you guys. So maybe just disregard all of the above and consolidate it down to: I’m still running the slant! Come join me in 2019!
At least you know that groundbreaking new material lies around every turn here. Watch out, 2019. It’s going to be a wild ride full of unexpected twists and turns that are basically all slant routes.