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To 2013

Dec 28, 2012 - By Steven R. Peck

Next week's calendar transition is more than just Monday to Tuesday

Here is a New Year's resolution suggestion for everyone in 2013.

Be resolute.

Catchy, eh?

It isn't meant to be a joke, though. It's serious.

Resolve to be resolute.

Here's how a reliable office dictionary (yes, in book form) defines the word: "Resolute -- Characterized by firmness or determination; pursuing a fixed purpose; unwavering."

Here's what a thesaurus (the online kind) lists as synonyms: faithful, intrepid, fixed, persistent, intent, unshaken, purposeful.

Steadfast. Undaunted. Valiant. Courageous. True.

Those are good things to be. Every one of them.

The book-style thesaurus lists some opposites to "resolute":

Afraid. Cowardly. Weak. Faltering. Half-hearted.

None of us would want those words used to describe us.

And they won't be -- if we are resolute.

Our resolutions for a new year are assorted. Common ones have to do with health. We'll quit smoking. We'll lose weight. We'll get stronger, fitter, firmer.

Also in the self-improvement sphere are resolutions about reading more, arguing less, sleeping better, staying sober, staying calm, staying home.

We resolve to work harder, to make more money, to pay more attention to the kids, the spouse, the dog, the yard.

Some of us vow finally to do the certain thing, go to the certain place, achieve the certain goal, change the certain habit, learn the certain topic, have the certain experience, get to know the certain person.

In general we all want to be better people, smarter people, kinder people, more successful people, more secure people, healthier people, happier people.

And we usually have some idea of what it might take to get us there, or at least get started. The better direction rarely is a secret to us. In the privacy of our thoughts, we have ideas, we have hopes, we have dreams.

As one year melts into the next, most of us feel that next week's calendar changeover will be more than just Monday to Tuesday. It stands as a break from the past. It stands as the start of something new. It stands as something fresh, a new start. An opportunity. A chance for something better.

All we know on the last Friday of 2012 is that there is only one way to get there from here, only one way to start moving toward the better place we all imagine for ourselves, only one way to move it from the imaginative to the real.

It is to be resolute.

So try it. Pick something and try it. Stick with it for a while. See how well you do. Chart your progress. Remember why you're trying. Hang in there.

Be resolute.

Not every resolution will pan out. Most of us have stories of resolutions gone kaput.

But that's only part of the point. This is the season of good intentions. That's a good way to kick off any new year. The only chance a New Year's resolution will succeed is if you try it. The only way it's certain to fail is if you don't.

So look at every resolution, from hair plugs to a new motorcycle, from a college admission to a Ph.D., from a smaller dress size to running a marathon -- look at every resolution as a subset of a bigger one.

Whatever you resolve, be resolute.

And Happy New Year.

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