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Welcome new year with open arms, open minds

December 30, 2012

By MATT CRANE
life@starkvilledailynews.com

It was nice while it lasted, 2012.

With the Mayan calendar not being as accurate as we thought, we are left to enter into a new year with new possibilities and uncertainties. Of course, every new year would not be complete without the requisite resolutions. Over the past few years, I have grown increasingly skeptical of myself when it comes to making New Year's resolutions because I can never seem to make them stick. I started to make a list of resolutions for 2013, but I decided to bless my own heart and scratch off the title of "resolutions" and go with a more plausible heading of "goals that I may or may not achieve this year."

I am, for better or worse, an optimist. I believe good conquers evil and happily ever afters are a real possibility and this — this — will be my year to shine. There is an overwhelming chance I will not get through half of my goals, but I will not be deterred. I am going to roll into 2013 with the blind optimism of a grade-A fool. Whether it is considered healthy by psychological standards or not, I believe in our American-made right to a tiny bit of self-delusion. If we proceed into something with a can-do mindset, the only person who can stop us is ourself.

Here is what I am hoping to accomplish in 2013:

– I really need to stop eating my feelings. At the end of a hard day at work or a not so great rehearsal, I should probably just go home, have a glass of water and watch some mindless entertainment on E! Network about the latest Kardashian katastrophe. Instead of calling a friend and talking about my day and why it might have gone badly, I pull through the Wendy's drive-thru line, order the largest Baconator they have and proceed to eat the entire thing circling my block. I am aware it is unhealthy on many different levels. No more late night burgers. No more double mocha ice cream floats with a side of brownie chunks. It is time to start handling my stress like an adult and workout every once in a while and take some time for myself. (Seriously, if you seen me on Jackson or Gillespie streets with a burger in my hand while driving…call the police. Someone must stop this madness).

– I need to reach out to my friends more. Graduating in 2011, many of the friends I made during my time at Mississippi State University are still here in school. While writing for the paper and staying involved with the Starkville Community Theatre brings with it some interesting hours, I blame work and theatre too often for my missing events and socializing. Those MSU friends still in Starkville mean the world to me and I have to do better.

– I have to be more grateful for the people and things in my life. I have been blessed with a nice writing job in a town I fell in love with 5 years ago and I'm surrounded by people who encourage me daily and make me strive to be better and dream bigger. I fear that my gratitude towards them is not enough sometimes. Instead of making this a strictly 2013 goal, I will start early by saying: thank you. To the people I have met on this job, thank you for welcoming into your homes and feeding me delicious dishes while I sat around asking questions and asking you to pose for pictures. It has been an honor to tell your stories. For the people in my life outside of this job, I say thank you. Thank you for being a hand to hold, a shoulder to cry on, a person to laugh with and everything in between.

New Year's is not about complete reinvention, and it should not be. I think the best thing we can do this New Year's Eve is to take an inventory of the whats and whos in our lives and try our best to improve upon what is already there. The rest will fall into place.
Happy New Year.

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