Resolutions and resolve; Will 2014 be different?

Forgive me, but I tend to find end-of-the-year recap stories and lists more amusing than useful.

Likewise, predictions pouring forth into the new year are, in general, place holders.

The start of a new year is an arbitrary marking of time, accepted by tradition or enforced by fiat. Jan. 1 doesn’t mark the start of a new school year, not even a new sports season. Jan. 1 doesn’t mark the beginning of the year for our city government — that’s July 1 in Medford. It doesn’t kick off the new year for the Uncle Sam, that’s Oct. 1.

For those of us filing tax forms with the IRS and state, yes Jan. 1 starts a new year. But for many corporations, say Harry & David Holdings for example which begins a fiscal year during the final week of June, it’s a far cry from Jan. 1.

I’ve read, heard and seen people who were ready to jettison 2013 with the hope the days ahead would be better. But does merely turning the page on a calendar — or putting a new calendar on the wall — really change anything?

I talked with a handful of people around the Rogue Valley on Tuesday for a New Year’s resolution story that ran in today’s Mail Tribune. Most of them had to think about what important change they might make during 2014. In most cases, they could’ve easily made those changes a week, month, or long ago.

The challenge for most, if not all, of us is to develop self-discipline, make good choices, spend within our means, and encourage others to pursue discipline, make the tough choices and develop mutual accountability.

The people I talked to suggested attainable resolutions, but more than likely they will need prodding from family and friends who care enough about them to sustain those goals.

By my math, we’re given 8,760 hours this year. My resolution? To make better use of each of them.

The first 12 hours of 2014 are in the books, here’s hoping I make the best use of the remaining 8,748 hours.



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    Greg Stiles

    Covering the Southern Oregon business and economy since 2001. Read Full
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