It’s January! And though we’re in the midst of a nasty, dreadful winter, it feels a lot like spring…well, if you don’t consider the weather. January, like March, is a time of rebirth and new beginnings. In the spring, nature beckons and we follow her lead. In the winter, we don’t have the benefit of nature leading the way so we have to be self-motivated.
Fittingly, January, the first month of the year, is when we make commitments, mostly to ourselves, to be better, improve, to do or not to do. Ultimately, we “resolve” to be our best selves and our resolutions, when implemented, lead the way. And, if we’re committed, come spring, we’re in full bloom.
January is also National Mentoring Month. It’s the time of year when Harvard, Mentor and the Corporation for National and Community Service join forces to shine a spotlight on the need for mentors in the lives of America’s youth.
In this new era of service, when Americans are being asked to give of themselves to help make America better, resolving to mentor a young person who could benefit greatly from having a caring adult in his/her life can be a worthwhile and mutually beneficial commitment.
I had several mentors growing up and believe that each of them positively impacted my life and greatly influenced who I am today. Whether it was a movie outing, helping me with my homework or just talking and laughing, I looked forward to our time together. Life has shown me that any time I help my fellow man/woman/child, I too am made better in the process. So instead of making resolutions that only benefit me, this year I endeavor to be more altruistic and help someone else become his/her best self.
Years ago, I “resolved” to no longer “resolve”—at least not like I’d done in the past. Instead of creating a laundry list of resolutions that I’d abandon before the end of the month, I decided to set just a few easily measured goals. This year I’ve done just that.
In 2010, I resolve to:
- Delete emails from 2007, 2008, and 2009 from my work and personal accounts and/or to get my work email below 6500 emails (so I can stop getting that system administrator, “your inbox is over its size limit” message) and my personal email below its current 3450, whichever comes first.
- Read all three of my magazine subscriptions within a week of receipt.
- Recycle/give away my magazines each quarter.
- Read a book a month.
- Shred junk mail each weekend.
- Become a mentor.