Resolution Amnesty Day

Resolution amnesty day
By Jarrett Bellini | @JarrettBellini | February 1, 2019

So, how's that New Year's resolution going?

* shamed silence *

I know. It happens. And I'm here to tell you there's hope - that 2019 is offering you a second chance. Because I hereby declare (with literally zero powers vested in me) that starting now, February 1st shall be known as Resolution Amnesty Day.

Here's how it works.

First, admit to yourself that you failed. It doesn't have to be a long conversation. Just an honest one.

"Jesus Christ, Janet. Get your shit together."

Something like that. Then, take a deep breath and understand this: On Resolution Amnesty Day you are forgiven. There is no judgement. There is no shame. There is no defeat.

Today is your free pass to humbly acknowledge that you aimed for the stars but landed somewhere near Pittsburgh.

And it's time to aim high again. Because Resolution Amnesty Day is a marker. A new DAY ONE. And, really, that's just what most of us need. A starting point.

Think about it. You could've exercised back in December. There was really nothing stopping you from waking up on any given morning, looking yourself in the mirror and saying, "Today is the day I lace up my Nikes and go for a run."

But you didn't. You ate Nilla wafers.

Then you oozed over to your desk like a Hefty bag full of fudge, circled January 1st on the calendar, and (like everybody else) made yourself a promise. 

New year. New you.

And maybe for a day or a week things went as planned. You forced yourself to the gym. You started a budget. You began calling old friends. It was almost like being a functioning human.

But, soon, cardio at LA Fitness turned into meatloaf on the couch. The entire entertainment allowance went to a single night of tequila (which, to be fair, may or may not have been worth it). And the joy of hearing your old high school friend's voice over the phone quickly dithered back to just texting each other eggplant emojis. 

So, on this inaugural Resolution Amnesty Day, it's time to re-evaluate your goals and consider the options.

Option 1: Start Again

February is a new month. Another fresh start. And the year is still plenty young. Today, having been absolved of any feelings of failure, you are free to move on and hit the resolution reset button. 

Do it. Press the button. You got this!

Unless "this" was something wildly unrealistic. Like building a border wall and having Mexico pay for it. If that's the case, you might want to try ...

Option 2: Recalculate the Resolution

Let's say you fancy yourself an artist. And this is the year you resolved to get serious and draw every single day. But that's not happening. Because every day is difficult. It requires that you do something ... every day. 

And that doesn't necessarily allow time for Netflix. Or Twitter. Or wallowing in self doubt. 

Or, you know, other things I'm clearly projecting. 

So, instead, maybe adjust that drawing resolution to once a week. That's do-able, right? Hell, even I can do anything once a week. 

Like wear pants.

Option 3: Pick a New Resolution

Learning French seemed fun. It wasn't.

Ambitious, but a waste of a resolution. And under normal circumstances, you'd have to wait an entire year to pick something different.

But on Resolution Amnesty Day you also have the option of completely changing your goal. 

It just has to be today. Seriously. Time to get your shit together, Janet.

Some Personal Advice 

So, assuming you do take advantage of Resolution Amnesty Day and kickstart yourself back into self-improvement, I want to share one little thing that I learned this past month. And I think it's important.

Because for the first time ever, I'm still going strong.

My resolution was simple: Portion Control.

Generally speaking, I eat fairly healthy. At least according to some guy on a podcast. 

But it's pretty much proteins and vegetables. I've been on this whole no-sugar-no-grain train for a while. But the problem has been that my train is hauling ALL THE MEAT!

Basically, my plate is like Everest base camp. And the Hillary Step is a side of bacon.

So, my resolution was portion control. And I'm crushing it.

Here's my theory. I'm having success because my resolution was reactive as opposed to proactive. I'll explain.

Eating is something I have to do. Whether I like it or not I'm required to provide food to my body so that it has enough energy to make it through a long day of Tweeting. And when those cravings come - as I get hungry throughout the day - I get to make a reactive choice.

Eat a reasonable amount. Or eat enough to fill a small school bus.

And, in that moment, it's effortless to immediately recognize the choice and make a decision.

Exercising is not reactive. It's proactive. You have to mentally decide that sweating with strangers is something you want to do, and then physically force yourself into the gym. And all that is before you can ever REACTIVELY decide whether to lift weights or just read USA Today in the locker room.

I'm not saying that exercise shouldn't be your resolution. I'm just suggesting that the results might be better if you either reduce the goal or make it a response to something else. 

Like, every morning when you wake up, just drop to the floor (which, as a mezcal drinker I assure you is fairly easy) and do 20 pushups.

There. Done. You did it.

But whatever you do. Whatever change you make. Decide today.

Because Jesus Christ, Janet. Get your shit together.

1 comment:

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