10 Promises I Will Make to Myself in 2017

A New Year’s Message to Myself

Many of the people who promised to get fit and quit smoking last night will be cursing the fact that they threw away their last packet of cigarettes last night and, this morning, they will be driving their car to the nearest shop to buy a new pack.  

So, instead of making a New Year’s resolution to do either of the above, I have decided to put a bit more thought into it and make some promises that are a bit more far reaching. Here are the promises that I make to myself and will try my best to keep in 2017.

I will remember that you can’t please all the people all the time
I have spent most of my life being a chronic people pleaser and it’s that trait that probably made me so good at selling, because I had a knack of showing people what they wanted to see and telling them what they wanted to hear. When that habit drives everything that you do, though, you begin to obsess over people liking you as a person and you constantly seek other people’s approval of everything that you do.

It’s been several years since my wife left me and I lost my business, and just about everything else I had too, so I have become a harder person by necessity, but it still knocks me for six when someone dislikes my work, or worse, dislikes me.

So, this year, I promise myself that I will build on the strength that I have gained and stop worrying so much about what other people think. I will accept that it is simply impossible to please all the people all of the time.

I will have more faith in my own ability to survive
As a person who struggles with depression, I have made quite an art of assuming the worst in all situations. If I am going to visit my children; I will assume that the train will be cancelled. As it comes close to the day that I am due to be paid; I will assume that my money won’t arrive. I am constantly making contingency plans to cope with the disasters that never actually occur.  They don’t occur, because if the train were cancelled, I would make alternative arrangements and, if my money didn’t arrive, I would get by until I sorted something else out.

In 2017, I promise that I will have more faith in myself, the kindness of others, and whatever else it is that has helped me through all the difficulties that I thought would become disasters and did not.

I will try to accept the past
I’m still haunted by some of the things that I have done in the past. I won’t go into details here, but suffice to say that a part of my fall from grace was becoming an alcoholic, so I have done more than my fair share of things in the past that I am not proud of.

I am getting better at accepting that I can’t change the past, but in 2017, I will stop fretting over the fact that I can’t put everything right and learn to accept that what has happened has happened. In fact, I will stop trying to blot those memories out and try to see the good that came out of even the worst things that happened. After all, I have never been so free of stress and I now have a whole new life to look forward to.

I really will be thankful for what I have
It’s funny how, when you have more money than you know what to do with, you never thank God, fate or anything else for your good fortune, but when you are hungry and you find half a packet of biscuits in the back of a drawer, you praise anything and everything that comes to mind!

I have been very fortunate. I am homeless, but I haven’t yet had to sleep on the streets. I live off a very low income these days, but I still managed to save enough money to see my children this Christmas. I have a roof over my head, food to eat, and I am in relatively good health.

This year, I will stop moaning about what I don’t have and I will start being more thankful for what I do have. (No, really, I will)

I will have more fun
I’m sure that there a lot of people who take life too seriously, but I really do have to lighten up a bit! So, in 2017, I promise to actually do stuff just for the fun of it! Sure, I don’t have the posh car sitting out front like I used to, but I’ve got a free bus pass that will take me anywhere and I never use it!

I’m going to look for the fun in all the things that I do and stop thinking that you can’t enjoy life without loads of money! I promise to go out more and visit my friends and family, I promise to go the movies once in a while. I even promise to engage in conversation with the next stranger who talks to me, instead of wishing they’d just go away!

I will chase my dreams
Following your dreams when you’ve been firmly kicked in the nuts isn’t easy, but I will try. During my Christmas day lunch with my children; my son said to me that I was lucky to have been able to have done so much in my life. He’s right, but you know what, it’s not all over yet!

I will take my son travelling around the world, I will take my daughter to New York, I’ll even finish writing that book about my life that I started and never got around to finishing.

I will stop looking for the instant solutions
We live in a world of instant everything these days. We want fast food, coffee on the go, what we can’t afford today, we buy on credit, and everyone is so impatient about everything

I promise myself that I will be more patient in 2017 and persevere with the work I am doing on my various websites and with my writing. Good things come to those who wait and, while winning the lottery would be nice, getting back on my feet the hard way would be far more satisfying.

I will sing “Que Sera, Sera” to myself more often
You have to do your best and, to some extent, that means trying to take control of your own destiny, but ultimately, you can’t control everything and you certainly can’t control other people.

I mentioned before that I stress over whether or not the money that has been promised to me will arrive. I have been known to stay up all night checking my bank account online to see if a payment has arrived and wondering if there is anything that I can do to make sure that it does.

That sort of thing really has to stop so, in 2017; I will adopt the philosophy of “whatever will be, will be” and accept that I cannot control everything.

I will stop beating myself up
“How could I be so stupid?” “OMG, What have I done!”  These are just two of my self-pity phrases that I will banish from my vocabulary in 2017.

We all make mistakes and most of us repeat those mistakes several times before we learn the lesson. I’m going to stop trying the perfect person I can’t possibly be and start being proud of what I am. I will continue to try to better myself, but I won’t beat myself up when I fail.

I will make 2017 count
New Year’s Day could be a depressing day for me, especially as I am on my own again this year.  However, while I may be feeling a little bit introspective, I don’t feel down.

It’s January 1st, 2017, the beginning of a new year, and who knows that the next twelve months have in store for me. I promise to do everything that I can to make this year the year that my fortunes change for the better and to make the most of every single one of the 365 days that there are to come.

If it doesn’t work out, I can always sing “Que Sera, Sera; whatever will be, will be”