Happy New Year: More or Less

Image: Darrell Cassell via Unsplash

Image: Darrell Cassell via Unsplash

Yes, I realize that New Year’s Day was Friday.

But, if you read here Friday you’ll know that I had a False Start on the year. There was a mini crisis with the blog being hacked and I lost my posts from last week. Those posts included my annual More or Less post in which I talk about how I did in the previous year and set goals, but not resolutions for the New Year.

In another post I talked about how, in 2015, I was in rehearsal or production every day for 365 days. I’ve already missed that for this year, but I did go to an audition last night. Yes, you’ll know (almost) as soon as I do.

Because of the production I co-produced on New Year’s Eve, and which you are very, very, very sorry to have missed, and because of a quick trip to move my son home from Atlanta just before Christmas, I really didn’t have a holiday vacation. Saturday was to be my only day at home with no agenda but my own. Instead we ended up driving to South Hill to catch up with some relatives that we’d missed over the holidays. It was the right thing to do, and I’m glad we did.

So, as this is being written on that same Saturday evening, I’ve made a decision. My fresh start to the New Year is today.

Don’t quibble. I know that by December 31 I won’t have made a full 365 days, and I’ve no intention of borrowing from 2017. But this is a leap year, so technically, counting today, I still have 364 days. And, if you know me well, you know that I get a lot more out of most days than a lot of people. I’ll be well ahead of the game by February.

But, on to the list. These are the things I plan to work on in 2016. Again.

Worship more: I love my church. I love my church family. But sometimes I have a need for liturgy and hymns more than contemporary worship. I’ll stay put, but I plan to seek out some more opportunities this year.

Pray more: Always on the list. Always never enough. Enough said.

Read more: I read quite a bit in 2015, but I did not make the number on my Goodreads goal. I’ve not yet set a goal for this year, and I may not. I got a couple of books for Christmas and have several others on my list. I just plan to keep reading. That’s sufficient for now.

Celebrate more: We did a fair amount of celebrating in 2015. But there are always opportunities to celebrate more. Even if we have to create them.

Work smarter: I’ve already alluded to the fact that it would be hard for me to work more. So I need to work smarter. Be more organized. Be more deliberate. I’ve developed a writing plan, and am working on plans for my involvement in theatre. These things will all happen. I just need to stay on top of them.

Play more: We didn’t make it to the beach, didn’t join a pool, didn’t get season’s passes to an amusement park in 2015. Big mistake. Maybe not all three, but definitely the beach. I only got two hours on the beach this year. Not enough. And really, it’s not so much that I need to see the ocean, I most certainly do, but it’s more that I didn’t have any time in the summer, or for reasons already stated, over Christmas to sit and do nothing. I need the chance to physically and spiritually recharge. I didn’t get that in 2015. Fortunately, in the aforementioned family gathering on Saturday we made the decision that we all need to fix that in 2016. There may already be reservations by the time you read this. But, sorry, the house is full.

Eat less: I don’t know that I ate less in 2015. The scales do not reflect that. But at least I wasn’t losing or gaining weight because of the side effects of pharmaceuticals like in 2014. I do, however, think I’m eating better. I’m much more conscientious about where and what I eat. I had much less fast food. True, when I’m in rehearsal mode it’s hard to avoid. But, even with that, I made better choices. For the most part. The goal in 2016 is to eat better and eat less. And, the reality is, when I’m eating healthier foods, my appetite is more under control anyway. True story.

Exercise more: The shoulder continues to give me some issues, but this year it was the back that went south, so to speak. I’m working on it and seeing my chiropractor on a regular basis. But it makes walking for any measurable distance pretty difficult. I am thinking I won’t be doing the 10K this March, and I hate that. We’ll see. At the same time, I no longer take pain meds for my arthritis, other than supplements and homeopathic remedies and I’m much better off than I’ve been in years. Sweeney Todd was challenging as an actor and challenging physically. It’s not easy to die and be resurrected in multiple performances. But I did it with little problem.

Write more: There’s another balance that I need to work on. My theatre work has distracted from the writing. I’ve taken a few steps back on my involvement on the production side by stepping down from the CAT Theatre Board of Directors. I’m still involved, and I’ll still be doing stuff, but on a reduced level. All that to say that my writing opportunities are increasing and I’m seeking more every day. Hire me. I’ll make you look, and sound, good.

Create more: I got a good start with the paints and canvasses I got for last Christmas (2014), but they’ve been stashed in the corner since late spring. I need a couple of good snow days to catch up and get that fire going again. Still, I’ve done a great deal of graphic design work, and that continues. Again, hire me. I’ll make you look good.

Spend less: Oh, how we tried. But let’s not even go down that road. Please see the tip jar on your way out.

Give more: We can always give more. We’ve tried, but need to step up our game financially. But, we’re also going to be giving away a lot of stuff. If we have things that have been sitting in our garage and in our attic since we moved into this house, we really do need to get rid of them so someone else could use them. We’re not up to be on Hoarders. Then again, if it pays, we might consider it.

And specifically, these are the things that will be done in 2015.  No, not resolutions, but they will happen.

  • Lose weight. Not giving the number, but I have a goal. That’s related to the above eating less (and better) and exercising more. There’s just not another way to make it happen.
  • Finish and publish that novel. Stop talking about it. If I can’t sell it to a publisher, I will self-publish in time for you to give as Christmas gifts.
  • Read the complete works of Shakespeare. Just because.

So, there you have it.

You can come back at the end of December and see how I did.

Or, better yet, you can come back every day and encourage me to keep going.

This is the first day in the rest of my year.

Lots of things have made me not feel excited about the New Year. I talked about some of that on Friday.

But I’m not letting that stop me.

Names will be taken. Behinds will be kicked.

More or less.

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