Wishes and Resolutions

Approaching the end of every year, one-third of the population of the world (maybe more, maybe less, who does not do it?) makes wishes and resolutions for the upcoming new year. Some people do it just because they are asked what would be their wishes; others, make wishes so whimsical that they could only be fulfilled when an asteroid hits the Moon and then bounces back to Earth in small gold pieces falling right at their feet.

For my part, I try not making any wishes because I know that a dream is just a desire with no further commitment. Instead, I make resolutions and set some goals associated with these resolutions to transform them into life-changing events, hopefully in a positive way.

Let me give you an example.

I am studying and practicing to be a good photographer, and this is my lemma for the next few years. Therefore, my wish for this new year could be: “I wish I could be THE photographer!”. Magically, by the end of the year, I would be THE photographer recognized and acclaimed by the community.

The sad reality everybody knows is that Life does not work like that though. This wish is a bag full of nonsense that would render me frustrated if I would go ahead with the idea.

Instead, if I say to myself: “I am setting a resolution to be a better photographer by the end of the year by practicing more, by perfecting my techniques, by submitting my work to galleries and by letting the available social media know my works.” And I top off the cake with this icing: “My goals are to have at least one gallery in my pocket and sell 100 more prints than I sold last year”. That is a firm and palpable resolution because I know that its actions and goals are reasonably achievable.

Wishes like “I want to be happier,” “I want to be richer” or “I want to be healthier” can be very generic and abstract unless the realistic resolution accompanies them and goals method showed above. In some cases, it might even entirely fail to comply with it.

What is the meaning of “be happier”? How can I measure whether I am happier today in relationship to yesterday? What do I need to do to “be happier” considering that I do not even know how to measure it?

A common wish is to have more money. Good deed! How? Winning the lottery? Getting a raise on the job? Getting an inheritance? Finding money on the street? If you try to set the proper resolutions and the goals for each of these questions, you are going to see that things are a bit more complicated than initially thought. Otherwise, everybody would be rich by now.

Just for the sake of stretching your mind, think about wishing to get an inheritance. Usually, inheritances come from close relatives that happen to die leaving some money behind. So, are you hoping some relative to die? Any possible “candidates”?

Jokes apart, I try to keep my resolutions low profile and just a bit higher than the limit possible to make things but not high enough to discourage me.

One more thing: as I said before, wishes and resolutions are made at the end of the year. Why am I discussing this subject way after that? Think about this: a resolution is to be valid for the duration of the year; therefore, it needs to be continuously revised, monitored and worked to get finished by the end of the year, yesterday, today and tomorrow, not only at the end of each year.

For the above, I am doing this now as I need to work on my actions to be a better photographer.

Meanwhile, as part of the representation of my resolution, I wish you would enjoy my sunset warmth in spite being taken in the harsh Winter. Why a Winter scene? Simple: Don’t we make our wishes and resolutions at the end of the year? Winter starts at the end of the year here in Canada.