Now that the season to be jolly is history we’re in the season to seriously look back at what we’ve accomplished in 2011. And, to look forward to what we’ll pretend we want to accomplish in the coming year. Except, not me. When it comes time to make New Year’s Resolutions, I’m a no-show.

Looking backward isn’t often as pleasant as it could be because we have to admit that we’ve often failed to accomplish what we said we were going to in the past year. Looking forward fills us with hope, although we kinda know that the hope isn’t going to last very long.

A good example of the New Year's brat's ignorance of the value of experience. Image courtesy of Wikipedia.

The past year is often represented by a decrepit old man, Father Time, carrying a scythe, just like the grim reaper. The coming year is represented by a brand-new baby in a top hat. Huh? Isn’t there a better way to look at the yearly cycle?

Exiting, Father Time could possibly offer some advice based on experience for the New Year, if he stuck around. Entering, there’s a baby who only knows how to sleep, cry, sometimes scream, and poop. Maybe that’s why Father Time is getting out while the getting is good. It’s a flawed model.

There’s nothing hopeful about celebrating the coming of the New Year by the grand old tradition of getting drunk. In these more politically correct times, tipsy might be substituted for drunk, but tipsy enough to render an active hangover by tomorrow morning. Not an auspicious way to begin on one’s resolutions.

An improvement on the situation might be to substitute goal-setting. Admittedly, in my younger years I thought goal-setting was okay for realtors and middle management folks but for me, no dice. I was living a bohemian lifestyle of perceived purity as opposed to the lives of bankers, corporate wanks or political wonks, and used car salesmen. Ha! I showed them. I didn’t even reconcile my checkbook.

Fortunately, age sometimes brings a modicum of wisdom and eventually I took up the habit of setting specific yearly goals, financial, personal, spiritual. I reconciled the checkbook. I didn’t get gloomy over goals I hadn’t reached. I focused on what I had succeeded in doing. This turned out to be a better way, but not necessarily the best way.

A bunch of Times Square revelers waiting for the ball to drop. Whoopee. Image courtesy of Wikipedia user Chensiyuan via Wikimedia Commons.

With more age—I’ve got quite a bit of it to rely on—setting goals seemed unnecessary as my connection with Spirit through meditation became stronger. I have come to see life as a continual unfolding, not year-to-year but as a day-to-day, minute-to-minute stream of experience.

Instead of trying to figure out what I’m supposed to be doing I do what my intuition tells me to do, and that comes from whatever Whatchamacallit you want to call it, the All-That-Is, the Source, God, the Whatever.

For me, this is the best resolution of all.