Present Tense

How about a mid-year reset?


I wrote this last December and realized this week, that I had abandoned much of what I pledged for 2012. As we get into the “silly season” of a presidential election I thought it might be relevant reminder for a lot of us, so I’m re-posting.  Or maybe it’s just a reminder to me that I had certain goals for this year and  since we’re halfway through, I need a kick in the pants to live them.

So, my friends how about a mid-year reset?

The week between Christmas and New Year’s Day is kind of a netherworld between regret over the past year and the exciting potential to begin anew.  Time to mull over what worked and what didn’t, while you try and formulate the way forward into another year.

Maybe the past year was rough, maybe it didn’t live up to your expectations, maybe 2011 flew by and you didn’t lose the 20 pounds or get a better job or save as much money as you had hoped.  The beauty is that we all get a mulligan; a do-over in 2012.  Every year, every day for that matter, we can hit the re-set button and start again.

2011 was a better year for me than 2010; I made some personal progress in some areas that I felt that I needed to work on.  I developed some new skills and hobbies.  I let go of some stuff and I re-connected with some old friends.  As we all must plot the way forward into 2012, my goals for the coming year include developing more humility and grace.  I admire those traits so much in others and they don’t come easily to me.

You see, I have a tendency to evangelize.  I try to bend people to my way of seeing or doing things.  When I see the light, I want everyone to see that same light, to have that same epiphany that I’ve experienced.  It’s my ego, mixed with an equal part of wanting people to be happier, less frazzled, less scattered.  There are some philosophies and behaviors that I feel strongly about and I’m compelled to force them on others.  No more.

What I’ve realized is that I can only control me; I can only impose my will or my beliefs or my knowledge or my epiphanies on me.  Look, a lot of you have lived your lives this way for years.  I’m usually a little late to the party, when it comes to self-realization and self-control.  I got here through study,  introspection,  observation and finally, acceptance.  People are gonna do, what people are gonna do, regardless of how I think they should behave.

The basic message of Christmas is what crystallized this for me: “Peace on earth, goodwill toward men”.  Christians say they believe in Jesus as their personal savior;  his message fills their hearts and their lives, yet many Christians seem to ignore what I believe is Jesus’ main message: 1. We are all sinners and 2. Love thy neighbor. I don’t study the Bible (that’s a whole other post, my friends), but I’ve read it and those two statements seem to distill it all down into a very simple premise that I intend to follow, even though Jesus is not my personal savior.

My no-nonsense husband put it this way:  “God didn’t mean for it to be so complicated”.  YESSSSSS!  So, whether you are religious or a searcher, like me, it’s this:  Take care of your own business and stay out of everyone else’s.  We’re all flawed, messy humans and the only person that you can fix or control, is YOU.  That’s it.

We can guide, we can teach, we can influence and then, we must accept.  Simple.  We make life complicated and frustrating when we list all of the things that we ‘wish’ other people would do:  drive better, be more polite, go to church, don’t go to church, believe in God, don’t believe in God, vote differently, spend money, save money, raise your kids better, blah, blah, blah.  Look, we’re all ‘that person’; you know, the imperfect one.

So, in 2012, I will work on me; I vow to stop bitching about everyone else because that takes away valuable time from my true work.  I won’t worry about other people’s sexual orientation/diet/political views/spending habits/parenting skills/religion/work ethic.  To paraphrase the J-man, who so many of you follow, “it’s time to worry about the plank in our own eye, dudes”.  Simple?  Yesssssssss!

June 9, 2012 - Posted by | Musings | , , , , , ,


  1. EXACTLY!!

    Comment by Marge beem | June 9, 2012 | Reply

  2. “Take care of your own business and stay out of everyone else’s. We’re all flawed, messy humans and the only person that you can fix or control, is YOU. That’s it.” Wow, if this just doesn’t hit you up the side of the head, what will? I get it, thanks for clearing that up for me. I should be happy with what I am accomplishing and quit forcing my new beliefs on who I think it could also help. In time, perhaps by my example they will inquire, but the key is IN THEIR OWN TIME! Thanks for the post, as always.

    Comment by Carol | June 10, 2012 | Reply

    • Easier said than done, Carol, which is why I felt compelled to re-post as a reminder to ME to back off:). Thanks for the comment. Best of luck.

      Comment by janelondon | June 10, 2012 | Reply

  3. Jane,

    Thanks for re-posting, I missed this the first time. I made a decision to work on this very simple approach towards life a while ago and can report it has made all the difference in my life. It was quite difficult for me at first to really accept that things/people do not change, we do. Once I actually started to live that philosophy the quality of my life changed dramatically. I’m more relaxed, far more gracious , empathetic when appropriate and sympathetic to those I may not previously have been. I still backslide occasionally and think I know best for all. I seem to catch myself quite quickly and even if painful offer an apology when due. All my interpersonal relationships thrive on a much easier keel and the one with my husband has enjoyed the most dramatic change. By accepting my own flaws and those of others I seem to regard us all as a little more perfect. And with a lot more gratitude. People really aren’t as dumb as we think. Just like me, they are just trying to enjoy their life and figure things out. I feel so fortunate for those who have given me a pass when I was busy deciding how they should live. I’m glad I am making an attempt to return the grace. Wish me luck as I pursue what I plan on being a life long practice.

    Comment by Kristyn winn | June 11, 2012 | Reply

    • Hey jane! Desperately seeking some insight!

      Jonesing for a new blog entry from you. I love your thoughts and the writing style they are expressed. I moved to Denver from Durango this past february and faithly monday thru friday continue listen to the Dom and Jane show via the IPOD app.

      Comment by Kristyn Winn | June 22, 2012 | Reply

  4. The above comment was suppossed to indicate that I moved from Denver To Durang. I accidently expressed that in correctly. Anyway thanks for blog. how are the things progresssings with the purchase of the farm in Michigan. I hope it all goes wel and you find you oasis. Take cafe and please continue to amuse us with your insights.

    Comment by Kristyn Winn | June 22, 2012 | Reply

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