Happy New Year! (now with resolutions!)

It’s that time of year, and while I’m not traditionally big on resolutions and all that (or really big on much of any kind of ceremony ever), I’m freshly out of a job as of December 31 and in a really good position to do some life evaluating and planning. And I figure the more concrete of a plan I have in place, the more likely I’ll be to accomplish some of the things I want. And since this blog is ostensibly about food, fitness, feminism, and fucking, I decided it would be a good idea to incorporate all of those into my resolutions, since those are generally the things I care about. So, as follows, a list of goals for the upcoming year, in no particular order:

1. Cook more and eat better: As with most other things I’ll talk about today, I blame my current situation on my former job, where as a restaurant employee I had had little choice as to what or when I would eat, and little time to make up for it at home.  I love to cook, I love healthy foods, and I just haven’t taken the time to indulge that in the last 6 months. That’s going to change, and to make sure I started off on the right foot, I made a big pot of rice and beans yesterday, even if I did go a little too heavy on the black pepper.
2. Be good to my body: I’m not going to lie, I would be thrilled to drop a few pounds, especially after gaining 30 in the last 3 years and feeling like I don’t match my mental image of myself. But more than that, I love how I feel when I’m exercising regularly, how I feel strong and have tons of energy and feel like if I want to do any given activity, I can just go and do it without worrying how badly I’m going to hurt the next day. I miss aerial and rock climbing and running and biking every day, and while I can’t make all those things a part of my normal routine anymore, there’s a lot I can do, despite the fact that I‘ll never be able to afford a gym in NYC.

I was a little chagrined to find that when I dusted off my exercise ball today, I had to do so literally. That’s not going to happen again. I’d done a pretty good job of getting back into running before the job threw me off schedule, and so after a 2+ month break, I went for a 3.5 mile run yesterday (with about a half mile of walking whilst trying to figure out how to make the gps tracker in my phone function properly). I’ve got brand spanking new gear to keep me warm if I want to run in cold weather, enough yoga mats and pull up bars and resistance bands and gyro balls to have a great indoor workout on days when I’m too sore to run, and a decent bike (if in need of a tune-up) and a cute hand-painted helmet to go with it, so I have no more excuses not to do something that makes me feel so good.

More importantly, I want to work on actually enjoying my body more, loving it for what it can do and accepting what it can’t. That was the thing I loved most about getting into trapeze, was sharing that attitude with a group of kickass women, and whether I’m still able to be with those women or not, I need to keep that lesson with me. And hey, if it just so happens that exercising regularly not only helps my mood and energy and health but also means I’m firm and toned with great muscles and maybe a little smaller than I am now, I’m not exactly going to argue with that.
3. Read more, write more: There’s a lot of ways to do feminism, but for me, so much of it is about engaging with the world and just being in tune with what is happening out there, and being part of a community. Now that I have the time to be online, I intend to use it, to keep up with what other awesome women (and people in general) are doing and writing, and to do more writing myself — both for my own personal goals but also to become a part of a community again, to be in conversation with others rather than just throwing my ideas out there into a relative vacuum. And I think writing more will force me to be more interesting — to do more, to think about more, if only so I can have something interesting to write about that someone might want to read.
4. Fuck more, and fuck better: Who doesn’t want to have more sex? I’ve actually been doing pretty okay since I became single again, but I would like to have sex that was semi-regular with someone I like a lot. One night stands have their place, and generally I’m pretty good about knowing the person beforehand and having it actually be someone that I enjoy having a conversation with and things like that, but it would be nice to feel like if I go home with someone I might also see them again. And regular sex, that would be even better! I don’t think I’m quite in a position to say I’m looking for a relationship, I think I should at least wait until I have a job before that happens, but ultimately I want to be able to have a partner that I’m comfortable enough with that I can get dirty and not worry about freaking them out, things like that, and also be with regularly  enough that we get to know what the other likes and things can actually improve a bit.

Speaking of improvement, I definitely want to have better sex this year. It’s been such a dry few years that I think I let myself get involved in things because somewhere I had the idea that it was better than nothing, and/or let myself continue in situations where I wasn’t really enjoying the sex and there wasn’t much else holding us together. I don’t want to be that girl anymore; it’s not healthy and it makes me feel slutty and pathetic. You can’t have a healthy positive attitude about sex if you’re putting yourself in unhealthy sexual situations, so I’m just going to make sure that if my situations veer off into that territory, I put an end to them. So no more old guy who insists on positions I find unpleasant, no more guy who thinks choking without discussion is fun for sexytime, no more guys who lack the confidence to get naked with me without being intimidated by me and my past. Fucking is meant to be fun, and I’m reclaiming that this year.
5. Find a job I love: I was originally just say I want to find a job, because, well, I do, but after the past two months in the hell that became my work after they announced they were closing, I feel more strongly than ever that I don’t want to spend my time working at a job I hate unless it is a direct and guaranteed line to something I know I will love. I am going to bust my ass on this job hunt, but not to get a job quicker. Instead it’s about getting a job that will be satisfying, with nice people, that will pay my rent in a nicer area than where I currently live. The thing I miss most about graduate school is the idea that I was always stimulated, that I was always challenged, and I think work can offer me that if I just find the right work for me. That means this job hunt will be harder than others, but it’s not impossible, and I’m going to do what I need to do to make that happen. And having unemployment come in from my last job definitely makes it easier to commit to the process.
6. Live better: I don’t mean in the big ways, like becoming a better person overall, or about having more money to have and buy nicer things, but the little things that will make me happier, and healthier, and more sane. Things like getting a better apartment that doesn’t leave me annoyed on a daily basis in a neighborhood where I might occasionally want to do things. Like keeping things clean enough that I never have to feel embarrassed about the prospect of having someone come home with me. Like getting on a regular schedule so that my body gets enough regular sleep that I’m awake in the morning and sleepy at night. Cutting down my caffeine intake so that if for whatever reason I skip a dose or two I don’t get a debilitating withdrawal headache. Little things, that are relatively easy, that I plan on doing so that I can be a better, happy, more grown-up pip.

It will be interesting to see how this list fares as the year goes on, but honestly I don’t think I’m trying to do anything all that extreme, or anything that will be that much of an effort beyond the initial getting-started period. And since I am unencumbered by work responsibilities during that initial getting-started period, I figure my chances are better than most that I’ll be able to make and maintain most of these as good habits. We’ll see, I’ll check back in a few months.

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About pippingeek

feminist geek starting over outside the academy
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4 Responses to Happy New Year! (now with resolutions!)

  1. Brent says:

    Easy, bite-sized goals; that’s what’s worked well for me. I don’t really tell people what my goals are because in the past they often copped the attitude of, “Well, even I could do that.” Nu-uh, not for months and years on end. Good for you for pursing both meaningful and realistic aims in life, and I’ll look forward to hearing about your new, awesome job.

  2. Cornflower says:

    I generally agree with and encourage all of your resolutions. However, I particularly like the third one, “Read more, write more.” I’ve always read quite a bit, but there are so many great books out there! It’s really difficult to get to them all.

    I’m particularly interested in books about women and feminism. (Thus my reading your blog; thanks!) Here’s hoping this year we both get to read more!

    • pippingeek says:

      hooray! one of my longtime favorite books about women and feminism is “Words on Fire: The Life and Writing of Elizabeth Gurley Flynn” by Rosalyn Fraad Baxandall. i want to say she also wrote something about rosa luxemburg that i enjoyed, but that might have been by paul frolich. amazing, you get out of grad school and all the facts slip away! anyway, those are skewed toward labor activists, but that’s what i was reading a lot of when i first got into feminism…

      or if you haven’t read them other favorites are “this bridge called my back” which i think is back in print, and “colonize this!: young women of color on today’s feminism”, which are books i used in teaching feminism classes. what’s new to read these days in feminism and women’s studies? i’m about 5 years behind…

  3. Cornflower says:

    One book that I am looking forward to is Framed by Gender: How Gender Inequality Persists in the Modern World by Cecilia L. Ridgeway. It looks pretty interesting (especially to a former sociology major like myself.)

    Thanks for the book recommendations. I’ll definitely give them a look-see.

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