So here we are again. The start of a new year – And how do many people celebrate the coming of a new year? By looking at what they are not going to do over the next 12 months.

No matter how you look at it, people who make resolutions are looking to give something up. Whether it be dieting (giving up food), quitting the cigarettes (self-explanatory) or even something such as getting fit (giving up slobbing on the sofa), they all involve getting rid of something out of your life. In keeping with the tradition, I have been giving some thought as to what I am giving up for the next 12 months.

For me, as someone who does not smoke, gamble, do drugs, engage in criminal activities, conducts himself as a serial philander, pushes old ladies over in the street or generally engages in behaviour that could be considered as anti-social either by myself or by others, I am left with little choice but a rather obvious one. Part of me thinks that it is ok to be carrying those few extra pounds, simply because I can’t be bothered in getting myself out of the dent in the sofa cushion (which has to be said, has found itself nicely moulded into the shape of my backside – the very fact that when you stand up, there is a perfect imprint of my rear end still hollowed out in the cushion suggests that I need to get off the sofa more or that I need better foam cushions in the sofa… I have a feeling it is not the latter), but then there is another part of me which knows that for my health and happiness I should really get out in the fresh air a little more.

The problem that comes with this type of resolution is that they often commence with the best intentions at New Year and last anything up to the 3rd or 4th of January. That said, placing too much pressure on yourself can be counter-productive, so as opposed to calling them New Year’s resolutions, and I going to term them as “objectives”. Furthermore, instead of being too specific in terms of my goal, I am going to attempt to change aspects of my lifestyle around my goal which (I hope) is a positive distraction from the primary objective. So here are my objectives (which may or may not be adhered to).

  1. I am going to try and swim for an hour at least three times per week

  2. I am going to reduce the number of times I have biscuits for breakfast

  3. I will make sure that my wine cellar reduces its stock in a more steady and elongated way ie. I need to stop downing wine at the weekends like it is going out of fashion. Emptying the wine cellar is not an Olympic sport (although if it was, I would be a gold medallist).

  4. I will make and stick to a shopping list as closely as possible without getting distracted by chocolate in shiny wrappings

  5. I will reluctantly accept that Pizza is not one of the basic food groups.

  6. My secretary will no longer be a bad influence when it comes to our cups of tea which, by her rules, seem to compulsorily include some form of chocolate or cake.

  7. Cheese will not be the cornerstone of my diet.

So there it is. My last piece of writing of 2013, and one which commits me to a number of changes That said, regardless of your resolutions/objectives/panicked promises at ten seconds to midnight, I would like to take this opportunity to wish you all every success with whatever changes, goals or resolutions you make and most importantly to wish you all a very happy 2014, which is filled with good health, laughter and happiness.

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About the author: Paul Szabo
In between visits to the theatre, watching films, photography, walking, scuba diving and singing (badly); Paul writes for TheGayUK.

Opinions expressed in this article may not reflect those of THEGAYUK, its management or editorial teams. If you'd like to comment or write a comment, opinion or blog piece, please click here.