Tuesday, January 8, 2013

New Year's Resolutions? Nope. New Year's Realisms

(post copyright 2013, Dawn Weber)

Positive thinking: You're at the wrong blog.

Realistic thinking? Come, young grasshopper - sit by me.

I finally get it. That's right. I've found enlightenment, peace, all that happy horse-crap, and since it's the new year, I'd thought I'd share.

The path to happiness is . . .

Low expectations and standards.

Yep. You've heard it a thousand times, "Have hope! Chin up! Things will turn around!"  

But verily, I say to you, "Have no hope! Head down and power through! Things could remain the same but will likely go straight down the shitter!"

To that end, here at the Lighten Up Center for Keepin' It Real, we have developed the "Low Expectations & Standards System," (LESS) and its message is - surprisingly enough - keep your expectations and standards low, low, low. 

The "Low Expectations & Standards System" works especially well in January. Here's how "New Year's Resolutions" become "New Year's Realisms" with the LESS program.

This year:

I resolve to lose weight.

I will probably gain at least five more pounds.

I resolve to work harder.
I will probably work harder . . . at checking Facebook on company time.

I resolve to become a more spiritual person. 
I will probably continue buying ridiculous amounts of material things that fail to make me happy.

I resolve to attend church more often. 

I will probably glance at the clock, roll over, and go back to sleep. Every Sunday morning.

I resolve to drink less. 
I will probably maintain or increase my intake of alcoholic beverages.

I resolve to eat healthier foods.
I will probably keep greedily consuming all manner of crunchy Frito-Lay products.

I resolve to get organized. 
I will probably collect more crap and eventually end up on "Hoarders."

I will volunteer 

I will probably avoid volunteering at all costs.

I will read more books. 

I will probably only read Facebook, Pinterest and blog posts of no more than a few paragraphs.

I will save money. 
I will probably buy more useless junk that stalls my efforts to save money and get organized, and eventually end up on "Hoarders."

I will quit procrastinating. 
I will probably quit procrastinating . . . tomorrow . . . next week . . .  maybe next year . . .

I resolve to learn something new. 
I will probably be much too busy to learn anything new, what with procrastinating, hoarding and avoiding volunteering.

See there? Simply by replacing the phrase "resolve to" with "will probably,"  you too can find harmony and be happy with LESS, just by embracing reality. Always remember our mantra, which is not "It could be worse," but rather "It will probably get worse."

With the "Low Expectations & Standards System," there is none of that "pesky disappointment" when things don't go "your way." Because - inevitably - many things won't go your way. It's called "adulthood." 

And it largely "sucks."

With that joyous thought, we at the Lighten Up! Center for Keepin' It Real wish you a very lazy, very average and - most of all - a very REALISTIC new year.

You're welcome.


Four chapters done now, and what? Like 50 more to go to get enough for a book.

Somebody, please - hold me. Or at least send a nice box of wine,
Anyway, as promised, here's a blurb from my next book chapter, tentatively entitled "Breakin' the Law, Breakin' the Law," about riding with Grandma.

". . . Yep. Grandma got pulled over by a trooper, driving down to our house Christmas Day.

She was pleased with herself.

"What? I didn't get a ticket and I made it in record time!"

None of this surprised us. Getting stopped is what Grandma does. Over and over over again.

It's nice when the elderly have hobbies.

You've seen the older drivers, the senior citizens, the Buicks rolling along at 15 m.p.h.?

Grandma is the one flipping the bird as she passes them . . . "

Stay tuned!


  1. I can always count on you to lower my expectations. But may I ask, just how low can they go? Don't answer that! 5 chapters....Congrats. Maybelle and Mabel have been thru the second edit. I must admit reading the stories for the first ummmm... I mean second time allowed me to laugh even harder. You go girl!!!

  2. LOL! I will probably follow every one of your realisms. ;)

  3. I've been telling Mary for years -- who swears she's going to get it embroidered on a pillow -- "Lower your expectations".

    Great minds, eh what? :-)


  4. I think you're on to something here....


    Nah....it's probably nothing....

    Thanks for being an underachiever right along with me. I feel so lonely sometimes.

  5. This comment has been removed by the author.

  6. As a fellow aspiring writer, I firmly believe that LESS is more. That is, of course, until it comes to Dawn’s posts. Then I believe that MORE is BETTER! Happy New Year, Dawn! Thanks for Keepin’ It Real!

  7. I love your new system! I have lowered my expectations long ago. I don't expect anything from certain people in my life- thus I am never disappointed. Sadly though, I find it carrying over to other people sometimes too. Maybe something will change all of that in 2013?

  8. Hahaha, I love your granny. Will she take me cruising? And I am sobbing here too about the book thing. Four chapters should make for a best-selling novel, I say! It's all about lowering our expectations, right? BTW, I love that part too, especially the bits about Hoarders.

    Keep us laughing while you keep it real, dear Dawn.

  9. I've always said that the key to dating me is having very low expectations. I feel right at home here.

  10. Yeah, I just make the goals up for myself as I go through the year. Hopefully that'll be more successful than making them in the new year.

  11. Wanda - Oh, they can go low, Wanda. Low low low. You're writing a book too? How very awesome.
    Linda - Very good! Prepare for untold inner peace.
    Pearl-Oooh- embroidered on a pillow? We here at the Lighten Up Center for Keepin' It Real love that idea!
    Susan - No problem! Really, it was "nothing." :)
    Jeff- One thing I want MORE of. And not LESS is Master of None posts. Get on that! ;)
    Pixie- actually, as I was writing this, I thought of you, and thought you would like the LESS system. Expecting less of people? You got that right, and it's a whole 'nother post.
    Robyn- We don't ride with Granny anymore. There are several reasons for that, which make up the rest of the chapter. You'll just have to read the book, dear friend.
    Jayne- Totally agree and understand. Welcome home.
    Dwei- Even with your process of continual goal-setting, low expectations are the way to go. :)

  12. Oh, now you've tapped a memory of something I have to write about "Less is better." /curse you

  13. My philosophy?
    Don't sweat the small or big stuff.
    You're gonna die eventually anyway.
    So go ahead and eat that whole pizza yourself.
    Probably a bummer philosophy.
    But that's a bitchin' tasty pizza.

  14. Thanks for the important life LESSon! ;) Happy New Year!

  15. Really nice Dawn - I was just reading an article along the same lines: http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887324705104578147333270637790.html

  16. Under exceeding low expectations is what I do best!

  17. Eric- we are glad we brought you inspiration with LESS.
    Penwasser- that's right. Eat right, exercise, die anyway.
    Annie- thanks. For the spam link.
    Rj- nice to meet a fellow expert. :0)

  18. You should offer a "New Year's Resolution" revision service...

  19. Yep... LESS is more. I wholeheartedly concur with the wisdom of those resolutions!

  20. Sage - Great idea for us! That's some "sage" advice!
    Paula - Glad to be of service. ;)

  21. Hmm, so that's why I'm still in my pajamas at 6pm. I'm a realist.

  22. Kelly- Yep. And I bet you're a comfy realist, at that.

  23. This is a great inspiration to me, great advice.

  24. We are glad to be of service, Anthony! :)

  25. I'm definitely lowering my expectations this year. I'm so over resolutions.