I'm surprised people don't like New Year's Resolutions. Or maybe they do and feel more shy about sharing it than they used to. Either way, I'm a big fan of setting long term goals and working towards them.

People like to say, if you really cared, you'd start today, you wouldn't wait for the end of the year. There is a lot of truth in that, but I think it is mostly pretend wisdom, and meant to discourage people at that. That's the sort of toxic stuff nobody needs.

Sacred rituals aren't always available. Their scarcity is part of the ritual. If you mess up a New Year's Resolution you have to wait until the next calendar year to start over. There is no equivalent, no replacement, not really. So, of course, help your future self by starting progress early. But that's just help. It's not a promise. That's what New Years is for.

Aside from fitness goals (needed after a recent slackening in my fitness, and unacceptable after making such good progress even before that), I have a couple – I'd like to read more. Maybe a book every week, something to talk about here. This probably means I'll be focusing more on topic-selected non-fiction, although fiction or non-fiction recommended on the strength of the book would be okay too.

I also have some goals about making things, and some more private goals. But I'm mostly interested in seeing a solid list of general goals people should have. I want to be a good cook, for instance, and getting hyper-specific about that takes meaningful work – but work you'd only need to do once, really. Shouldn't there be a rubric for culinary school graduation tests or something I can use?