In Australia I always think spring is a better time than the New Year to be making resolutions. New Year’s Eve falls in the middle of a long summer, after the end of the school year and all the fun and tensions of Christmas. The school year comes to an end in a flurry of activities, then there is a tiny pause in which the children explode with anticipation over Christmas. In our family there is also a birthday between the end of the school year and Christmas. There’s Christmas itself, delightful in the parts involving immediate family and sometimes less so in extended family, and often a long drive down to Sydney. I am often cranky and tired (even more so than usual). It’s no time to be planning major life changes or even minor adjustments.
Spring on the other hand is a season of promise and anticipation. One eases out of the coolness of winter with pleasure at the balminess of the spring air. If we’re in luck we have September rain, blossoms, grass and the promise of a less-dry summer. We haven’t yet hit the unrelenting heat of January and February when winter seems illusory. The world seems a nicer, more hopeful place.
Every year around this time I decide to turn my life around. I’m going to be more organised, more pleasant, more patient, less irritable, healthier, fitter, tidier, more satisfied with my life, do more in the garden, grow my own vegetables, watch less television, clean the house more often, read more erudite books, avoid junk food, finish off projects – simply be a better human being all around.
This lasts for a few weeks and then I fall back into my slovenly ways. So this year I am determined to simply focus on a few things. I want to finish the book, finish the renovations, remember to enjoy being with my family and squeeze in a small amount of exercise. The rest will have to wait.