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Every year it’s the same story. We all ask ourselves, "What will we do differently this year?" Well, when my family went back in the house from burning firecrackers, my dad suggested we all sit down and contemplate that very question.
It became our next family assignment. Thus, I opened a blank word document and stared vacantly for a while. What did I want to do differently this year? I fingered my hair, counted my pencils, and clicked my pen. Finally, the word attitude appeared in my mind. How many times had my mom’s criticism had threw me into fits of anger? How many times had annoyance or stress caused me to flare up and explode? Reluctantly I typed:
Attitude is everything
It was difficult even just typing it to myself. Admitting my faults was definitely not high on my hobbies list. Attitude, as I was relentlessly reminded before, was the ultimate thing that would change my life. Just knowing that made me feel guilty about events of the past that clearly did not show my strengths in that one particular area, the one that most affected my life.
Okay, I thought. So far, it wasn’t exactly up to 13-year old writing standards. Sighing, I decided to add more things to at least make it appear as if I had actually attempted this assignment. After what seemed a millennium of useless thoughts, a dull light bulb clicked. As an American-born Chinese girl, my English was basically American. My Chinese was, of course, a different story. Closing my eyes, I could imagine my mom frowning about the fact that Chinese was my heritage, I supposedly should have learnt it well, I wouldn’t succeed without learning Chinese properly…
What next? The word document still looked astonishingly empty, which did not reflect the amount of time I had spent on it. The last one came much quicker than the others. Of course, organization was an important skill I had yet to acquire. Smiling weakly at remembered times of forgotten papers, lost items, and messy desks, I typed:
It still seemed pathetic. New Year resolutions were not supposed to be this painful. I knew they were a reflection of my former year’s performance and goals for the next.
I am positively approaching every aspect of my life and enjoying the fruit of my good attitude.
I am enjoying the fluency of my speech in Chinese and basking in my parent’s (and teachers’) compliments.
I am thoroughly organized at all times with everything I do, making me feel confident as I complete task after task to reach my goal of the ultimate success.
Pretty good, I suppose. I found some pictures from Clip Art in and stamped a border around the page. Feeling pretty good about my assignment, I emailed it to my dad.
Now, 8 months later, I’m looking at that assignment printed out, under the huge glass crushing my desk. I’ve learned so much about realizing and admitting my faults, setting goals, and working hard to accomplish them. Did I do it? Perhaps I’m not completely doing what I had envisioned, especially resolution number three. I glance over at the huge pile of books and papers on one side of the desk. On the other, 3 trays—In, Pending, and Out. Completely empty. Time to do some organizing! I can already see next year’s resolution says No procrastinating. There’s enough time though. After all, I still have another 4 months.