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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

One Hundred Promises to Myself

They say that most people have already abandoned their New Year’s Resolutions, or will soon in the coming weeks.  That says more about the choice of resolution than the people who make them.  When we decide to do well for ourselves we are immediately invested in the process.  With all the information and support on goal setting available, the most important element is, “What’s in it for me?”  If we are not to be the winners in the end, the whole program is destined to fail.  Yes, we may get organized, loss the weight, earn or save more money; but for whom?
Resolutions are really promises to you.  They are the statements of how you choose to show up in the world, how you will shape your life and life experiences.  The beginning of the year is merely an opportunity to review and establish another pattern of movement.  As I recognize my connection to my family, friends, neighborhood, community, and world at large, I acknowledge that that which I do for my own growth and healing extends to the healing of others.
This year I took on a commitment toward zero debt.  As we move toward more electronic management of information, those of us who push paper for a living are effectively being made redundant.  Before that notice arrives and while I am (thankfully) employed, it seems to make the most sense that I make my escape from the obligation of debt.  With this particular focus, I am conscious not only of my spending but also of the resources available to me from friends, families and neighbors.  How easy it is to run to the store to make a purchase rather than to ask if an item is available for loan (or gift).  In the past, my neighbor and I made regular exchanges of food, clothing, tools and services.  There are also plenty of websites set up for this very purpose.  We can sell or trade our excess; buy another’s. 
The most challenging aspect of this commitment is my enjoyment of shopping, both online and in stores (garage sales, booths, etc).  I love a deal, a bargain, stuff.  I have more than enough of everything – food, books, purses, clothes, shoes, linen, soap, and toys.  Because I have enough, I have decided to begin to use what I have.  I make my own body balms with oils and butters (avocado, shea, cocoa).  I have collected wonderful handmade soaps over the years along with some favorite body washes.  As much as I would like to replace those that are running low, I will merely move on to a new fragrance. This month I explored the pantry and cooked lentil and bulgur soup; served it buckwheat pancakes.  It was most excellent.  Next we had tomato sauerkraut soup.  I actually have a large collection of lentils (dal) and enjoy fashioning my own versions of Indian dishes.  I have already made the investment.  It is time to collect.
Staying connected with my financial commitment means walking away from items that attract me.  Today that means garden bulbs on sale.  I plan to grow food to support my family and friends.  We planted fruit bushes last year that we hope will produce this year.  I already have plenty of flower bulbs for the beautification of my yard and have seeds harvested to be planted in the spring.  What money I have available will go to purchase crop seeds.  In the spring I plan to plant radishes, spinach, lettuce, kale, onions, garlic, herbs, potatoes and tomatoes.  Sometimes my draw to flowers is not only their beauty, but my success in growing them.  This year, I will push beyond my comfort zone and plan according to my vision.
From the review of this single resolution – to be debt free – I am addressing shopping, spending, cooking, family and community involvement, gardening, organizing (using current supplies and resources), and a daily appreciation for my job.  I am thankful for the life I have chosen, with its simplicity and myriad opportunities.  None of us know what the future offers, but we can each find ease in the journey.  What’s in it for me?  I am all about the ease and the effort; the opportunity of growth – shifting and changing. 
In love and light…

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