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Choosing a path for the new year

January 9, 2011
Chelsey Roath

2011 has finally arrived!

Looking back on 2010 I can honestly admit that I'm thankful it's over. The Winter semester of my junior year has commenced. Winter break is almost over and it's time for a new set of classes. Basically, I'm ready for a fresh start.

I know, it's not the normal thing to say when looking back, but it's how I feel.

I also know it's time to make my New Year's resolutions. I hate making resolutions; I never stick with them. Plus, usually my thoughts are all wrapped up with how I need to make myself a better person, make my life more beneficial, make my body more "ideal." In the end, I drive myself crazy by striving to reach perfection.

I'm sure we have all been there.

Giving up pop, starting a new exercise routine, planning on never being late ... so on and so forth.

Somewhere along the road to our resolutions, life happens. We skip a day or two on our workout plan. The dogs won't go into their kennels so we are 10 minutes late for a meeting. Perfection never seems to happen, no matter what year it is.

So this year, I'm trying something new. I'm hopeful it will allow me to be more self-fulfilled when looking back at 2011.

It was my mother's idea. My mom told me to try to pick one word to symbolize the upcoming year.

It was more of a challenge than I thought. But after careful consideration I decided on the word "choices."

My mother constantly reminds me that every person is blessed with the same 24 hours in each day. At times we wish there were more; we have to remember to count our blessings.

We all make "choices" every day. To go to class or to call in sick. To use the drive-through at McDonald's or go home and eat a chicken breast. To work hard at our jobs, or let the Internet distract us. Choices.

I've heard it over and over again: integrity is what you do when no one is looking. Again, I want to make the right choices.

It's OK to waste a day if you CHOOSE to waste it. Just be aware you made that choice to do so.

Sometimes a girl just needs a weekend to lounge around without a care in the world.

So this year, why don't we all try something a little different. Let's all make a pact to embrace 2011 and everything it has in store for us - including all the choices we will make. Let's embrace the new relationships we'll build, the highs and lows we'll encounter.

And just for kicks and giggles, if you find yourself itching to make a "real" New Year's resolution, try this: Live joyfully. Worry less. Be brave.

Editor's note: Chelsey Roath is a student at Northern Michigan University. Her weekly column on college life in Marquette runs on Sundays. Her e-mail is



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