Sunday, 1 January 2012

2012: Be it resolved



With a pug as my witness, I resolve...

...To be more patriotic.
...To bow to the Queen when I enter the post office.
...To salute our glorious leader.

With a gun to my head!

Let's face it.

Resolutions are a crock.

I was reading in the New York Times today which reported that one-fifth of all Americans who sign up for gyms at New Year's fail to darken their doors after the first week. A third of them stop going by the March break. And the average member, typically, visits the gym only 54 times after joining.

Less than once a week.

Yet they all keep paying.

What a bunch of maroons.

That's why business loves resolvers.

"Our collective failure to keep our resolutions represents an annuity of sorts for health clubs, weight loss centers and other enterprises that make up what you might call the self-improvement industry," says Nastasha Singer, the author of the Times article. "It's an industry that thrives on our failure to change: recidivism is good for the bottom line."

Last year was the first year that I made good on a resolution.

I joined a gym and stuck with it.

That's because I was poor, couldn't get into my clothes and couldn't afford to buy a new wardrobe. I had reached the size of some small countries -- weighing in a whopping 220 pounds; I couldn't sit comfortably at the computer anymore nor could I walk a block without sore feet.

I'm proud that, today, I am healthy and strong.

But I didn't make this resolution on January 1, 2011.

I made it in the previous summer.

I made it because I was ashamed to wear a bathing suit in the summer time. I was tired of my thighs slapping together when I walked down the street. And I hated having my picture taken.

In essence, I had hit a brick wall and bounced off it.

Lifestyle change requires a paradigm shift, a tectonic shift in thinking. It doesn't start on a drunken Saturday night watching Dick Clark's Rockin' New Year's Eve.

Or Night of the Living Dead, as I like to call it.

Most of us come to make successful resolutions gradually.

Others of us have to be felled by heart attacks or cancer before we realize that change we must.

I got tired of going to funerals.

If you must make a resolution, make one that you have some hope of realizing.

Otherwise, it's just the booze talking.

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