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Oh! The Resolutions…

I confess. I don’t have resolutions.

I never do. Many years ago, I made the New Year’s Resolution to never make another one. It is the only resolution that I have ever kept. Now, before anyone flips out and lectures me about the importance of making goals, please give me at least a blog post to explain why I do not make resolutions.

I was in my early twenties when I bid a final farewell to many of the New Year Eve’s traditions. I do not rub my hands in bowl full of coins for more money. I do not eat black-eyed peas or herring on a cracker for good luck in the coming year. I do not frantically change my calendar to welcome in the new year. I do not do any of that stuff and I do not make resolutions to fix my weight, my job or my soul.

I do acknowledge that these traditions are social activities that bind us together and therefore they hold importance in society and communities. Eating black-eyed peas or making wishes together are common activities that we can focus on instead of our differences. In short, they bind us together in a common act or desire. We all want to hope that our lives will be better in the new year. In reality, they are superstitions that do not actually have any credible influence on how much luck manifests in the next year of our life.

Why did I quit good luck superstitions or new year resolutions?
There were two reasons.

Reason number one. I never managed to keep or fulfill any of my resolutions. In truth, by mid February I had all but forgotten my carefree resolutions. I came to understand, that my resolutions were no different than any of the other good luck activities. I did not really give any serious thought to what I set out to change. I hastily, and in my early years, drunkenly, prattled off a list of my faults that the New Year was going “correct” for me.

Reason number two. When good luck or the magical “new” year did not produce a whole new me, I became discouraged. I concluded that I was a bad person responsible for the entire universe gone awry. I was the ultimate failure because even good luck could not come my way. This was a dangerous internal dialogue that no amount of black-eyed peas was going to fix. Wishing wasn’t going to make see myself in a more positive light.

Good luck was not the answer. It never worked. On a hap-hazard, laughter filled, wine induced New Year’s Eve, I announced that I was never going to make another resolution and trust luck to fix all my problems. Instead, I started making goals. I focused on three goals a year that I was responsible for manifesting in my life. That’s is when things began to change. I no longer sat back and relied on fate to solve my problems. I took time to consider the direction that I wanted my life to go, made goals according to my plans and then worked on meeting those goals. Sometimes I do not actually make my goals.That is okay. I work toward them. I have discovered that working toward my goals shows me what I need to do make to them a reality. I practice reality every year not good luck.

Hard work will be the primary tool in shaping the life you desire. 2017 did not hate you. 2018 is not going to magically make your life better. The New Year is not a fix all moment. It is a day on the calendar. Nothing more, nothing less. It is a good time to reflect on your life and your goals. It is a good season to come up with a plan. It is a great idea to celebrate with family and friends. These things are absolutely true. Superstitions and good luck are not the Universes handymen to problem solve your life.

I don’t intend to sound harsh but that was the difference for me. Resolutions, black-eyed peas and bowls full of pennies relied on some good luck fairy to swoop down, waiving a magic wand that was going to make all my problems disappear. When that didn’t happen, I could easily blame luck because I did not have the life I wanted or wasn’t the person that I wanted to be. I held no responsibility in the outcome of a year, an entire year of my life. Making goals meant that I was responsible and accountable for my how my life turned out. I made the choice to do away with superstitions and empty wishes. I embraced the reality that I was in charge of my goals coming true.

Maybe, reality is cold and harsh. At the end of today, the New Year is not going to bring you a better life or make you a better person. January 1 is just a day on a calendar. Sure, it is the beginning of a new calendar year and that is good for marking time but not so good for life changes and life plans. The next 364 days are in your hands.

My goals for this year are really a continuation of the direction I was headed in when 2017 ended.

Goal 1- Establish an online blog and business. This has been developing for many years. I am getting close. Closer than I have ever been.
Goal 2- Move out of the Valley of the Sun. I need to get out of this valley for a variety of reasons. Health and happiness being the top two.
Goal 3- See my mom, Jeri. I’ve seen her once since April 1993. It sucks.

These next three goals are kind of a given in my life. They apply no matter what year.
Goal 1-Be kind. Learn to practice kindness every day.
Goal 2. Be thankful. Learn to spend more time expressing gratitude and less time complaining.
Goal 3. Photography. Learn more. Do more. Grow more.

Make goals in reality not resolutions hoping for good luck to fix your world. You’ll get a whole lot more accomplished and next New Year’s Eve, you can be proud of what you have done and not spend the evening blaming the calendar for not making all your dreams come true.

Be brave.
Jamie Christine

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Bridal Shop Bliss?

I’ve been thinking…

A few weeks ago, I had a job interview at a bridal salon. I was super excited about it. I was interviewing for a customer service representative position which would require me to work the front desk, answer phones, up-sale items at the cash register and generally be an assistant to everyone in the store. I have a lot of customer service experience in my 30 years of work experience. Topping off all my work experience is the fact that I have a diploma in bridal consulting and I consistently monitor the bridal industry along with keeping fresh with latest trends. Seriously.

I had two interviews with two different ladies. The first interview was with a calm and charming woman who was especially easy to converse and laugh with. The second woman was uptight, snobby who barely even spoke with me. My interview was less than 15 minutes long and she was ushering me out the door. Keep in mind that I am completely prepared to accept that there was a better qualified candidate out there. In fact it is pretty true in life that there is always someone better qualified than you and someone less qualified than you. It is just a fact. Here’s my however. I over heard the snobby lady say something as I was waiting for my interview that has been rolling around my brain and now, I am not sure about that my qualifications or lack of were the reason I did not get the job.

I was browsing through the stunning dresses when I over heard the snob say, “I liked her but I think she would be better in the back, in alterations. She was old you know.” She was speaking about whomever had interviewed before me. The lady who had previously interviewed for the job was an older woman. Apparently, the snob, felt that because although she was qualified, she should be placed in the back so no one would see her. Because she was old.

When I heard her say it, I was shocked and I thought to myself, “I hope she is not doing my interview.” Sure enough, she was the person I was meeting. The snob was so brisk in the interview and impatient. It was obvious that she was in a hurry to get it done. I did my best to work with it and keep moving forward with a smile. In hind sight, I am not sure that the snob ever gave me a chance. I am older and I am fat.

This is the first time in my life that I have ever wondered if I lost a job based solely on my appearance but after considering how the snob was willing to hire a qualified candidate and stuff her in the back because she is old, I am not so sure.

I understand, people and companies have images. I also understand that I am perfectly capable of dressing and grooming to company standards.  I understand this may have nothing to do with why I did not get the job. I also understand that it is wrong to put qualified employees “in the back” because they are old or fat.

Other than my weight, I was appropriately dressed, clean and well groomed. I was 15 minutes early, well mannered and have a bridal consulting diploma. I understand that I am a valuable, hard working and intelligent employee who happens to carry some extra weight. I understand that loosing weight would be better for me. I am working on it!

More importantly, I understand that, sadly, that bridal shop was no where I want to work especially after seeing how they treat older people. The snob can feel safe. Me and my old, fat, qualified self will just work elsewhere with people who know how to NOT discriminate based on weight or age.

Be brave.
Jamie Christine