It may be a little early, although it is my desire to write a blog entry that focuses on New Year’s Resolutions in hopes of letting my mind churn around them as soon as possible. New Year’s Resolutions are technically defined as promises we make to ourselves no later than December 31, 2016. Resolutions are goals we vow to accomplish the following year and hobbies we wish to start. They are often things we say we are going to do followed by giving up after approximately two weeks. The same resolutions may be made year after year either because our goals are unrealistic or we do not have the motivation to follow through with them. My advice is to make no more than ten and rejoice if just five of them come true. Perhaps this is true for all individuals but this is especially true for the autism population because battling our struggles will be worse if we make promises that we cannot possibly keep. Here are my resolutions, and I go into 2017 knowing that the odds are unlikely that all ten of them are going to fall into place. As a wise relative once said, “It is better to do about three things very well than twelve things half-assed.” Come to think of it, I have decided it is a better idea to simply make a list of five resolutions considering my track record with keeping at least ten.
I would like to beat my habit of excoriation (a.k.a. skin picking). There is a large scar on my hand that is the result of excoriation, which has not healed since 2013. Whenever I am frustrated or worried about something, the tendency to pick my skin away returns with a vengeance. Every single time the question remains, “Why am I doing this to myself?” The best analogy I can give you is comparing it to a crusty barnacle that has fused itself to a ship’s hull. The sailor things it looks unsightly so he (or she) chisels the abomination off. Eventually it gives way but takes a piece of the hull with it. Instead of looking smooth, the hull actually looks worse than it did before when the sensible thing to do is leave it alone for a couple of weeks so it could die naturally and fall off without a trace. Perhaps the best way to accomplish this goal is keep my hands busy by writing emails, blog entries, and exercising. And speaking of exercising…
My resolution this New Year’s is the same as in year’s past. I would desperately like to lose at least 30 pounds and get back to the shape that I used to be in after the Appalachian Trail came to a close eleven years ago. Part of the reason I have gained so much weight is due to a phobia of waste. I will find myself overeating at restaurants to avoid wasting the leftover food. If they bring me a container to take the food home, chances are strong it will be a Styrofoam container that is going to poison the universe. Therefore, I have started to bring my own containers to restaurants in an effort to avoid waste of either the food or the Styrofoam. Perhaps it will be necessary to pretend that I am in some kind of a horrific thriller in the sense that a mad scientist has implanted me with an internal bomb and the only way to keep it deactivated is by exercising at least one hour per day. Preferably in the morning, by the way. There are at least two weeks at my program when the students are not present and work is performed at the main office. During this time, perhaps I could leave the laptop at the office and walk to and from work every single morning.
I used to read a lot more. A whole lot more!! In fact, I was often reprimanded by elementary school teachers due to my habit of reading instead of doing my work. The instant gratification of YouTube has taken away some of the motivation to read. Why read a book when I can relive my childhood years of yore and yesteryear by watching intros from TV shows in the early 1990s? But one step I did take toward accomplishing this resolution a little bit early is having my best friend from college, Karl get me a book about Bernie Sanders for Chanukah instead of my usual DVD. Perhaps reading on the elliptical trainer at the gymnasium will dramatically help with the pursuit of this particular goal.
Some resolutions cannot be accomplished because they are too ridiculous and/or go completely against our nature. But we may compromise with these goals. I continue to worry all the time, and this produces some unusual nightmares. For example, I recently had a nightmare that I was having a second Bar Mitzvah at age fifteen or something. But as you can imagine, I had no idea what to say nor did I have any Hebrew memorized. All of my relatives were there, and I knew it would be an absolutely disaster. Furthermore, I cannot seem to stop being angry or dwelling over problems that had occurred at least ten years earlier. Everything is always at the surface. It is basically impossible to let go. For nearly ten years, I would also return to a job that I had lost in 2006 and grovel for them to take me back based on the dramatic progress that has been made over this time. In every increment of six months, I would say something along the lines of, “There is a huge difference between consequences and being forced to suffer forever because of some troubles that occurred many years ago when I was struggling with the worst of Asperger’s syndrome. This is a problem that has shown little improvement over the past 34 years and do not know if it is possible to completely stop dwelling on these ancient issues. But perhaps this year I will try to think about the past while doing something very productive like cleaning the apartment or swimming at the VENT fitness center so it will not technically be wasting time.
A few months ago I posted a Facebook photograph of me posing with a slice of cake along with a big wax zero bearing a flame. The photograph was to celebrate me finally getting out of what was at least twenty-five thousand dollars in credit card debt. Unfortunately, I am currently back in a little bit of credit card debt even though it is not even remotely close to the mess that was created back in 2012. My most important resolution is to pay off the new debt and do everything I can to stay out of debt for a long time if not forever. I have been putting one hundred dollars per week in a savings account after storing it in my Toy ATM bank that is technically for small children but I went through a brief phase of being hypnotized by the worthless junk in the Skymall catalogues within airplanes. This piece of junk has actually proven to be quite useful, however. Within time I will begin to chip away at the problem and will always have this particular savings account that will allow me to bail out of trouble within having to swipe the problem on credit cards.
This is what I have to say about the subject. Perhaps the best way to achieve these resolutions is to start them well before Christmas so there will be some amount of momentum by New Year’s Day!