Kelley (kelglitter) wrote,

Empowering Impossibly Great Lives...

I read this apparently hard to find funny comic called A Softer World. It's crass, and selfish, and horrible, and I think I like that it is so cut-yourself-on-the-pointedness. The most recent one though, wasn't all that crass or horrible, and it was actually exactly what I was thinking about writing about.

You can read it here. The mouse-over says (like xkcd it always has one) "What interests us most is finding out what we are like," a statement which isn't as dumb as it sounds. It's true - we are a rather selfish species, and we spend vast amounts of time thinking about ourselves. In fact, the whole annual resolution thing is usually a byproduct of thinking centered on ourselves - we have been thinking about this or that for quite some time, usually, and then finally resolve to do or cease to do x,y,z as of some definitive date (which should really be the solstice, or Christmas at the latest, but those pesky Romans...).

But why not resolve to each day resolve to live a better life? Why not spend your time working on the math of why we do the things we do instead of the math of how much force must be applied at what angle to pull ourselves up by our own bootstraps?

In some circles a "quiet time" is sort of the gold standard for spending time with God. Most focus on having a set plan on what is done during said time, and importance is laid on the consistency of those minutes' makeup, the repeated doing of said same thing during said same interval each day. But I remember a guy named Jim, a small group pastor, mentioning that he doesn't actually decide what to do with that time until that day, and then he does whatever he feels like doing - maybe some Bible reading one day, journaling another, praying the Psalms another, etc. At least, that's how he approached it then.

I've been pondering this for a while now, and it makes all the sense in the world for me. Our lives change regularly based on this or that new crisis, this or that virus that taxes our immunities, this or that slice of pizza that gave us crazy dreams, this or that vitamin deficiency that makes us want to eat out-of-season vegetables. The weather, our appetites, ladies' hormones, the health of our loved ones, the days of the week, all change on different schedules. Applying a one-day-fits-all sort of standard to our lives might work for some, but for many, it leads to despair when we realize we really cannot consistently clean ALL the things.

So this year I think I'm going to do my best to quit the quixotism. I've had at least fifteen years of attempting the specific annually and performing poorly; I think I'm ready to admit my shortcomings enough to attempt the broad: Better life, according to whatever sum the confluence of current complexities dictate, as integrated over perhaps daily time t.

Ideas visiting vaguely:

Quitting my job to just make art. (See "Here's A Box" lyrics here.)
Riding my bicycle far away by myself (perhaps to visit family in Indiana?).
Shipping a bike to my uncle's in Cali and spending like, February, there.
Recording or writing nearly every day. (See Making Light for details.)
Swimming for cheap on Thursday mornings.
Actually using my gym membership sometimes. Including the sauna.
Gardening in small doses.
Getting new roller-blades.
Eating what I feel like when I feel like - there is an appropriate number of calories to consume for every activity level, even the sedentary - surely this math is not too hard.
Walking or riding to work (weather, such an unmitigable variable).

Vaguely. Broadly. Generically. Uncertainly. Variably. Yea, variably.

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