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Tomorrow I Will…

change2017 has dawned, and it’s time to think of new beginnings and challenges.  It’s always a healthy thing to think about how one can change and improve, and what better time than the New Year?

When I was younger, I used to take New Year’s Resolutions more seriously and engage in them ambitiously, at least for a short time.  Health options are always good.  Exercising and eating better have been on my list on and off for years, but neither has a good track record.
In the computer age, I have spent more time looking at a screen than a page in a book.  So I want to plan to read more books.  I have, of course, read some books on screen, but the comfort level is still not there.

Speaking of books, I have sort out some guidance by looking for resolutions in books. “52 Small Changes: One Year to a Happier Healthier You” by Brett Blumenthal is a fun and comprehensive book.  Each chapter is a week (52) and gives a suggested life change for each one.  Changes range from diet/nutrition and fitness/prevention to mental well-being and green living.   It is very specific by giving sample diets and instructional exercises.  Blumenthal’s premise is that change takes time, and if one follows a change each week, by the end of the year, one will feel happier and healthier.   It would take a lot of discipline to follow his recommendations that closely, but the book gives some very interesting and realistic changes from which one can choose.

“30 Lessons for Living: Tried and True Advice from the Wisest Americans” by Karl Pillemer,Ph.D. is a book that can make one think what changes can be made to have a more fulfilling life.  Pillemer is a gerontologist who collected advice of wisdom from people over the age of 65.  He wanted to “find out what older people know about life that the rest of us don’t.”  Advice is given in the book for lessons on such life issues as marriage, career, money, children, aging, regret and happiness.  Pillemere claimed that interviewing the people and writing the book changed his own perspective on life.

“Pivot: The Art and Science of reinventing your career and Life” by Adam Markel is a newer self-help book on how to change one’s life.  The idea for the book came from a health scare that Markel had as a result of a stressful and unhealthy life style.  He presents the book as a toolkit and roadmap for reinventing one’s life.  Markel’s advice goes beyond simply choosing a new year’s resolution, but the book is an interesting read for anyone who is considering some serious and sweeping life changes.

Benjamin Franklin said, “Be at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let every New Year find you a better man”.  I guess that sums it for all time.  New Year’s resolutions at least give us the chance for pause and reflection.  Happy 2017!

Norma Logan is the Literacy Volunteer Coordinator at the Morrill Memorial Library. Read Norma’s column in the January 12, 2017 issue of the Norwood Transcript and Bulletin.

Sam Simas

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