A New Year’s List of Resolutions

A suitable list of alternative resolutions written for a body in motion, a body flawed, a body cracked in places, a body that soars on the page but sometimes hesitates in the mirror, for the body with a heart that is sometimes tentative, and for the body that houses a passion too big to be contained.

  1. I vow to go on a diet. It’s time to shed  my excess pounds of baggage and doubt.
  2. Everyday I will to look into the mirror—emotionally naked—and rejoice in all I see, even those Herman Munster feet of mine I’ll need to stand firmly upon when I am in front the mirror with only my birthday suit.
  3. I will exercise my heart by gifting the love that flows freely within without consideration or concern what is given may never come back in equal measures.
  4. I won’t count the number of pounds I gain and lose over the year, instead I will keep a tally of the number of words I write then rewrite.
  5. There will be at least one adventure a month and a breathless moment of bravado each week as I confront an unknown fear with reckless abandonment.
  6. I will keep a daily journal of random thoughts, wild notions, opening lines, unlikely endings, secret wishes, and dear diary ramblings.
  7. I will walk with my eyes upward, my stride even, my mind clear of lists and to-dos. I will smile, wink, and even flutter the lashes, for no reason other than to exchange smiles.
  8. I will make peace with a memory and bury the heartache that sometimes rears its ugly face at 3:00 AM.
  9. I won’t hesitate at hello and reconsider goodbye.
  10. In the heat of anger, I’ll try to remember the numbers after zero and before eleven.
  11. I promise to begin more than end, and to continue moving through life with hope of discovery regardless of the outcome even if the end is a foregone conclusion.
  12. I will whisper to the wind and wait for her response even it takes the length of a moment.
  13. I promise not to admonish myself for not reaching the bottom of a list or reading a book from page one to The End.
  14. I will not to guilt myself into undertaking a task just because it’s popular or deemed necessary.
  15. I will reward myself for investing in passions that slide like silk over my naked soul.
  16. The writer in me will believe the words I write without doubt.
  17. The woman in me will embrace the words I write—even the ones written with stark honesty—with humility and courage.
  18. The past I’ve sometimes regretted will unfold before me with new meaning.
  19. I will cherish my failures, but only after a glass of wine, a sad song, or three, a sniffle or pool of tears.  I promise to rise like a Phoenix the morning after with renewed commitment.
  20. I may doubt magic, but I won’t forsake hope.
  21. I promise to remain true to myself, and the words that come from the right side of my heart, even if it sometimes stretches me beyond my comfort zone.
  22. I will continue to believe in the mystery of life.
  23. I will continue to believe in Some Enchanted Evening connections and not don a bitter smile if love sometimes confuses.
  24. Above all, I will not forsake honesty, regardless of the cost.

I am not one to write down resolutions annually because life is fluid. What feels right in a moment will not be so in the next. The listing of ideals is futile so why set myself up with failure? The only list worth writing is one written upon the body as it rises each day.


If you were to add to my list of resolutions, what would it be?


I’m a writer and hoarder of one-size-fits-all panty hose. Until the hose fits over my bum, I write to provide an alternative view on writing and perfection.

50 thoughts on “A New Year’s List of Resolutions

  1. Brenda, This post is beautiful and I am going to share it with as many people as possible. You are a beautiful writer and gorgeous human being. I love these intentions and hope you read them everyday and write them on your body for safe keeping! Love, Jodi

    • Jodi-you’ve made my eyes leak. My heart and I thank you for your wonderful words which I will savor and reread as needed. I am grateful for many things, but one is finding other writers this past year who have encouraged me to push on.

  2. I should definitely keep track of how many words I write and rewrite. That’s a great idea. Wait, you don’t believe in magic? I read your manuscript and I kind of disagree. I think you do believe in magic. It doesn’t happen often, but it’s there. Ask Stella. :)

    • Mistress Kelly – I can’t argue with you as you know the other side of me unlike most (even the family). You are the star that has guided me through all those pages. Stella did give me a piece of her mind this morning as I reread my post.

  3. Lynne Favreau

    That’s a lovely list Brenda, uplifting and inspirational. I’ve never been a New Years resolution maker, but since my birthday is in mid-January I revisit and reflect on whether I’m keeping to my intentions around this time year anyway. 16 and 17 believe and embracing the words you write–yes, I’m working on those.

    Happy New Year!

    • Lynne, I am not one for annual resolutions either, but I do believe in regular reflection for purposes of keeping myself honest (even when I’d rather hide under a pillow). I am glad you enjoyed, and 16 and 17 are good ones. Happy New Year, to you too, if wishes were mine to give, I’d wish a year of ease and smooth sailing.

  4. I love your list, Brenda! You’ve inspired me to create my own, though I think I might just add onto yours :-). I especially relate to #3, 5 and 24 . . .

    • Nancy, feel free to add. It’s an unlikely list of resolutions, but times are not what the used to be and I think we writers should continue to challenge the status quo.

    • Maria – Gracias, I am enjoying reading the comments more than my write, especially how each can relate to all of us. I don’t think I am saying anything any of us hadn’t thought of before…

  5. This is wise and gorgeous. I know that I’ve told you this before, but I love the way your words flow. I want to dive into the deep end of their pool, to twirl and let them envelope me, to scoop them up with two open hands and splash them onto my face. You have the magic. Truly.

    My addition to the list? Let’s see. Okay:

    I will embrace my dreams and nourish them as though they are my children. I will feed and encourage them, provide them with my time and my passion, and love them to the depths of my soul.

    • Elizabeth – I love you addition, it’s the sum of all mine. Beautifully captured. Nourishing our dreams is the one lesson we women sometimes skip over and only discover later. I am speechless (which doesn’t happen too often) at your words. Thank you seems inadequate, but it’s all there is this tiny window. Gracias! I have copied some of these posts to future reference. Hugs!

  6. I will whisper to the wind and wait for her response even it takes the length of a moment … Loved this one, Brenda!
    Even if I had one to add to your list, I couldn’t make it sound as breathtaking as you!
    I’m not one for New Year’s resolutions, since I tend to see September as a new beginning rather than January, however, I vow to finish my book by mid-April, despite all the forces against me!
    Happy New Year to you, Brenda … you and your flawed, cracked, moving soaring body!!

    • Astra – you keep writing and come April I will be reading your celebratory post on finishing the novel. It’s a bitch sometimes, but I can’t tell you how amazing it is reach the end (well, it’s the second write of the novel and I am tweaking, but it’s close) but once you get there.. you’ll howl at the moon. And thank you for always coming by, reading my words and sharing your thoughts. It is appreciated more than you know. HNY to you too, looking forward to sharing in the new year.

    • Linda- It’s easier than living the alternative. I confess I do fib now and again, thus my love of writing fiction. I can create alternative universes, what ifs, and live out those fantasies. Thanks for your kind words.

  7. June O'Hara

    I am resolute: This year I will not change. Instead I’ll strive to remain cranky, bitter, intolerant and discontent. I’m looking forward to it.

    Since I’ve not yet resolutioned, (love verbing nouns) I’ll tell you that I love, love, love this post. That you will look at yourself in the mirror with love and think of your gift of writing; that you will make no hard and fast rules because life is fluid. What’s right one day might not be the next. Such wisdom in those words. It’s beautifully written and made me consider things in a different way.

    Ahhh. Now back to being my natural miserable self.

    • Oh Junebug- I suspect you not always cranky and miserable and there are rare moments (many more the you will confess to) where you actually smile and enjoy the moment. Of course, knowing that you loved my post makes me smile. For a few minutes you were outside of that cranky exterior and were blooming like a lotus.

  8. You’ve got a hefty list here. I wouldn’t add to it. I try to stick to 10 to-dos, then reassess mid-year to see where I am and redirect, if circumstances dictate.

    I do think, like yourself, that we need to set goals and strive toward being better than we were yesterday. Writing it all down is absolutely the best way to reflect and see where we are. It’s like, planning for success.

    But girl, love those Herman Munster feet and be thankful you have feet at all. I’ve worked with students whose parents would light up at the reality that their children could stand, eat independently, speak, etc. Shucks, I call my mine Fred Flintstone feet but it’s all good.

    • Hey Tosh! I don’t recall every sticking to any particular set of goals, except to write everyday and exercise. Everything else is up for debate. I am a firm believer life is too fluid to kept to a set of struck guidelines. I like setting down the loftier objectives because the seem easier to incorporate into the daily existence. Yes, these feet of mine are some stray gene from generations past. No clue where they come from. No one else has feet like mine. My sister has Barney Ruble feet (small and wide) so I am in good company.

  9. Oh how I loved this! But even as I read it, I thought, “That’s a hard one…” on a lot of those. I don’t make NY resolutions either, but I also have shied away from setting goals in general, for fear of failure. This year I am going to write down some things I want to accomplish. Mostly little things that I want to strive for. My first foray into goal setting so I am proud of even this idea!

    The words you choose to express your thoughts are so lovely. You ARE a poet. I keep telling you! :-)

    • Ah, Michael Ann, you make me smile. I am keen to hear. I am a believer in little victories. They build and push us onward. My heart is blessed to have found you in cyberspace. And you do say the most wonderful things… poet?..Something for me to strive towards.

  10. This is so beautiful. I wouldn’t add a thing, you have it covered. Why oh why do thoughts of things we can’t change rear their heads at 3:00 am, almost to the minute?

  11. 24. Above all, I will not forsake honesty, regardless of the cost.

    25. I will begin putting my book together because it must be read.

    26. I will Love Love Love in spite of everything.

    27. Especially try to love myself…

    28. I will become closer to God.

    Xx kisssss & Hugzzz from MN. GREAT POST (as usual)

    • Kim- those are wonderful additions to the list. I am in your corner on the book. You have the passion woman, follow your heart. Grazie, my dear. My write soul thanks you for your words and support.

  12. k~

    It took a total of three posts to capture my attention (not an easy feat!), and another three to keep me. Your words can shift and shimmy through my mind with luster and grace in any fashion you desire. To add to your list, might risk taking away from the final paragraph, which is where my heart resides each day. Fluid… I have told the people close to me “I am an honest person, but I am also wise enough to reserve the right to change my mind, as the truth changes.”

    May your year be all you hope for, wish for, and much, much more than you dreamed it could be!

    • K- I am right there with you. A good truth is often better served over ice even mixed with water should the situation warrant some dilution. I am smitten with your description, “shift and shimmy’.. It gave me tingles. Please come on by when you have time.

  13. Brenda a great list…Very encouraging…doable and so real. Personally I do not make lists only because I like fluidity… to be able to flow in the directions of life ….

    • Savy, it’s the anti list, mine is. I have to agree with you about being able to flow with the tides of life. We may had grand intentions but we’re forever having to review and revise our plans depending on life.

  14. Beautiful, beautiful. I can relate to so many. I particularly like #4. It’s clear you put a lot of thought into this list. Let us know how it goes in terms of keeping on track with your list. Thanks so much for sharing.

    • You know what, Monica, it was a tougher post. Sometime a post just flows without any effort, but this one I had to labor over. Spot on. I will need to print it and monitor my own progress… word count and rewriting, not that’s a challenge. Glad you stopped by.

  15. Hi, Brenda! —

    Thank you for sharing!

    My favorites are:

    #5 ‘There will be at least one adventure a month and a breathless moment of bravado each week as I confront an unknown fear with reckless abandonment.’

    and, of course,

    #24 ‘Above all, I will not forsake honesty, regardless of the cost.’

    Happy New Year to YOU!! XO

  16. You have a wonderful list, I don’t know if there’s any resolution I can add. I love Honesty: self-honesty. I love the ones about not ‘guilting’ yourself, and going on adventures.

    In particular, No. 8 stood out to me. I shall make peace with a memory that was a huge chunk of my past, too.

    We’ll have an awesome 2012, Brenda. :)

    • Claudine, I think you’re right, it’s going to be a great one..The ones you like are favorites of mine as well. It was hard to pick because all of them mean something to me in a different ways, but I thought those ones were goodies.

  17. I could not add one thing to this list . . . Life is fluid; we need to learn to go with the flow, not fight the current.
    Loved how you emphasized really getting to know who we are inside . . .

    • Thanks, Martha… Life is indeed very fluid. Easier at times to stay with the flow and sometimes the heart cannot, regardless there is always and adventure. The inside is where the goodies lie.

  18. Brenda, I can’t think of anything to add to your list, but I do know that for me personally this year I am going to try to be sure to ‘stop and smell the roses in life’. I always seem to be rushing without taking time out for seeing the truly important things in life. I hope to approach 2012 with a different attitude about ‘slowing down’.

    • Mary-I suspect if you do stop and inhale the sweet goodness from those roses everything else will come into focus and you’ll just slow down naturally. I remember the running ( I am sometimes guilty of it and life is pushy) but I work to stay less manic. I wish you peace and a different pace next year.

    • Mistress Corinne, I thank you kindly for be a supporter and reader. I see your words every time I need inspiration or forget my step. You’re a gem. And if your wishes for me come true next year I’d be a happy woman.

  19. Great list. My personal favorite line is the following: “16. The writer in me will believe the words I write without doubt.” Very inspirational.

    I’m wishing you all the best in 2012. Cheers.

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