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NOTIONS: Resolved: No dropping the ball after the ball drops

January 2, 2006

Does your January break With a master plan? A savvy scheme? Sophisticated strategies and tactics?

Or will you wing it, Taking each day as it dawns, Making the most Of each passing moment?

Do you begin with an honestly clean slate? Or do lingering regrets, (Unsaids and undones), Cloud your New Year's premiere?

Was the year just past a good one for you? Did it enrich your mind and spirit? Did you enjoy good health? Did you give and get love? Did you balance your needs with others'?

And before the revelers donned their funny hats, And blew their kazoos, And warbled Auld Lang Syne, Did you get done what you'd hoped you would? Or did you scrap your plans and change course? Or dodge asteroids hurled your way? Or get creamed by one upside the cranium? Whatever the case, Having invested mind, body and soul In another year of life, Did you get ahead (by whatever definition)? Or just get by? Or were you simply glad To get it the hell over with?

At the gym this month, The resolvers will swarm Like fleas to a mangy hound. They'll circle the parking lot, Seeking the closest spot, And shortest walk, To their workouts.

For a few, well-intentioned, weeks, They'll pump iron, Pedal bikes, Climb stairs, And run laps Until and of course, Yesterday's habits, And today's obligations And tomorrow's anxieties Intervene.

By mid-February The resolvers will have reneged, And the gym, once again, Will belong to the gym rats.

So what will you resolve? What has meaning enough To overcome habit, Obligation, And anxiety? What will make you say, When the ball drops A year And four seasons, And 12 months, And 52 weeks, And 365 days, And 525,600 minutes from now:

"Look what I done, Ma, Look what I done. I set my mind to it. Poured my heart into it. Stuck with it. And grew as a person because of it"?

Whatever that is, Aim for that horizon, And start walking in that direction. Then even if the asteroids Hit you upside the cranium, (And they will), You'll still feel good When the ball drops next New Year's And it's time, once again, To begin anew.



Hetrick is president and CEO of Hetrick Communications Inc., an Indianapolis-based public relations and marketing communications firm. His column appears weekly. To comment on this column, go to IBJ Forum at www.ibj.comor send e-mail to bhetrick@ibj.com.
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