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This Year, I'm Gonna Change

By Tamar Yonah
9/26/2008, 12:00 AM

Yah, yah, I say that every year.  Well, in spite of my good intentions, I really haven't achieved all those lofty ambitions, and even not so high goals I had set for myself to 'change'  for the new year.  Something as simple as wanting to make lists for myself, I still haven't managed to do.  I have said for the last two years, that I need to make a check list of all the things I need to do during the day.  By doing this, I will be compelled to get more done, and also feel some sense of accomplishment when I get to check tasks done off the list.  But though my good intentions are there, I seem to float through the day.  I may get things done, and yes, I get my shows done, I write my INN articles, blog and meet my deadlines, but I still feel a lack of accomplishment.  Why?

Yesterday while saying my morning prayers, I looked around my house and saw my book shelves stuffed with books, some on their sides on top of the nicely arranged books below.  I have too many books, too many chachkas, too much clutter in this house.  My closet is jammed with clothes that I don't really want to give away, thinking that 'someday' I will fit back into them. My kids still have stuffed animals in their rooms cluttering their shelves, even though my youngest is already 11 years old. This is not an Israeli house, it's an 'American' one.  I have too much.  I have to shed.  Oh how I want to shed.   The clutter weighs down my soul.

And so, with the idea of progress, not perfection, as I probably will fall now and then, I am already before the New Year, starting a weekly calendar list with the hours of the day to be filled in.  I may not accomplish everything on my list, but the sense of checking the things I do accomplish, off of it, will give me a 'visual' of the things I HAVE completed.  When I get things done now, I don't notice the accomplishments. When I write them down, and see them, they become real.  I need the visuals.

There are those of you who may have very orderly lives, some of you may already keep 'list making' as part of your daily ritual.  I'm more of a free bird, joyfully flying from one project to another.  But this bird wants to manage her nest a bit better this year.  Clean out the clutter, write down my daily schedule, get my priorities done and then make sure to schedule an hour of 'fun' during my day.   Joy is important in serving G-d.  Laugh, rejoice and serve, although not necessarily in that order. 

Here are two short Rosh HaShana New Year videos for you.  One funny, one more serious.

PHONE ATONE(MENT)

WHO SHALL LIVE?

Think what things you want to really change this year, and then start, even before Rosh HaShana. That way you are already entering the new year showing G-d you already are making the effort to change.  Remember the old adage:  If nothing changes, nothing changes. Here's a great website to download for free any type of calendar you wish. I like the weekly one with the hours of the day to fill in.

I wish all my readers a very sweet, blessed, productive, healthy, safe and happy New Year!