Editor’s note: we are pleased to post our first entry submitted by someone not affiliated with Quicken Loans or one of our partner companies. Who is next to appear on the DIFF?
In the nether months of 2006, I received this picture from my holiday work party. Apart from the fashionable co-workers flanking my mid-party mug, the picture tells an ugly story and was a real wake-up call. Having not seen a recent picture of myself in recent months, I was stunned at how–let’s be gracious–horrific I looked (contrary to the optics, I wasn’t over-served; I was blinking). When had I started shaving only a few times a week? How did I not notice? How did I ever think this looked remotely cool? When had my face swelled to look like a Hamtramck paczki? When did I get this OLD?
So like so many well-intended folks approaching the new year, I resolved to lose weight and shave more often. As weeks passed and co-workers asked, "How are the resolutions going?” I hunkered down, drew deep with my once limitless wellspring of discipline and intensity and…shaved. I even lost four pounds by eating differently, taking the dogs for longer walks and resisting the urge to collapse on the couch after dinner for the obligatory two-course dessert of back-to-back Scrubs reruns (my wife’s fault, I’m a sucker for snappy writing). As I battled the daily encroaching stubble and longings for third and fourth slices of Jet’s deep dish pizza, I learned a subtle difference in a timeless epistemological struggle facing all mankind, and that is:
Resolution is an act of becoming, not being.
In the past, once I "slipped" and my resolution fell apart, I might have given up. But not this time. I discovered the joy of resolution as a process, not a one-time door to pass through. Like shaving itself, you don’t "resolve" once and call it a day, or even a month. You tell yourself, and continue to tell yourself, that you can do better and just keep on keepin’ on. Clean mirrors and digital scales don’t hurt either.