Hope springs eternal with the start of the new year
What are your resolutions for 2014?
It's here. The year 2014.
And just like the experts predicted 40 years ago, the average person will be flying around the Pikes Peak region with the aid of jet packs, cruising over bodies of water on hover boards and flying to the moon in rocket ships.
It's funny how those bold predictions never came to fruition. None-the-less, hope springs eternal with the start of each new year.
It's interesting how people of nearly all ages and sizes are a little more optimistic when January 1 rolls around. You see it everywhere you go.
The gymnasiums are packed with people. Businesses roll out new marketing schemes to attract new customers. School-age children vow to get straight `A's.'
That same sort of optimism happens with baseball teams and their fans. It's about this point of the year that all 30 major league teams believe they have an equal chance to win the next World Series.
It's odd how it works that way in baseball; more so than with any other sport. It doesn't matter what happened the previous season or seasons. It matters little that your organization has had a history of losing.
Even the fans seem to forget over the course of the fall and winter just how bad things got. They believe, just like the players, manager, coaches, owner and media outlets covering the team that “This just might be our year.”
Usually, however, eight weeks into the season reality sets in for most teams and the dream of winning the World Series is put on hold for at least another season.
It's sort of that way with our New Year's resolutions. Many of us aspire to work out at the gym every day and replace 40 pounds of fat with 20 pounds of muscle. We pull out those size (fill in the blank) jeans and vow that were are going to fit into them no matter how much sweat and tears and starvation it takes.
Some of us even buy swimsuits and clothes that we can't presently fit in as motivation to chip away at our goals.
But just like those baseball teams that seem to lose every year, when we feel defeated we tend to lose hope.
So what's it going to take to stay on task? Not just for a month or two, but for the rest of the year? The rest of our lives?
In the 1991 comedy movie “What About Bob?” starring Bill Murray and Richard Dreyfuss, a psychiatric patient (played by Murray) regains his confidence and transitions back into society by taking baby steps. Dreyfuss, who plays Murray's psychiatrist, wrote a book called “Baby Steps” that Murray follows to the letter.
By the end of the movie, Murray not only accomplishes his goal of breaking free from his chains, but he excels in his new world. Dreyfuss, in fact, ends up in a psychiatric hospital, largely due to the fact he has lost control of Murray.
Baby steps just might be the best way for us to accomplish our 2014 goals. For me it's losing weight and getting back into those size 34 jeans. I've worked out at the gym pretty much every day for 10 years, but I've also gained numerous inches and a lot of pounds along the way.
Perhaps I need to take a different approach to my workout regimen and diet? I likely will lose my motivation if I don't see serious results from the pain. But if I take baby steps and am content with losing four to five pounds a month, perhaps that will motivate me to stay with my plan. After all, the loss of five pounds a month equals 60 for the year.
Watch out Kevin Costner, here I come.