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Marty Joins the Resolution Revolution

Happy New Year everyone! It’s time to get going on all those resolutions everyone’s been talking about. Every conversation I’ve heard in the last month has been littered with “no more sweets this January” and “after New Year’s I’m going to get organized” and “starting the first of the year I’m going to save more money.”

My mom is no exception. She’s been going through an introspective phase the last few months listening to a lot of time management webinars and self-improvement audio books. She’s been saying how this year she will meet her goals because she is going to set SMART goals. She has been all “SMART goals this” and “SMART goals that.”  Well duh! Who would set DUMB goals?

Anyway, apparently some of this motivational mumbo jumbo has worn off on me because I have set my own goals this year. I know I have said dogs live in the present and goals and resolutions are contradictory to our nature. But it’s can’t hurt. Worse case scenario I give up and suffer some disappointment. Can’t be any worse that getting to Tupancy and finding all the other dogs making their way back to the parking lot. Just try again next time.

So drawing from the pointers in the webinars, I have written down three specific goals. People who write down their goals are substantially more likely to achieve them. I chose three because choosing too many goals can lead you to lose focus and get frustrated. And they are specific and measurable, so I will know when I have accomplished them. Also, it’s important to choose goals that are meaningful to you or you won’t be driven to reach them. You gotta want it!

So here they are:

1) Earn one bone marrow per week. When I’m really good, my mom rewards me with a bone marrow. One time I sat quietly for TWO HOURS while my mom worked under a strict deadline to finish an article. I know what that’s like, so I could empathize. Even though we were long overdue for my afternoon walk and I really had to pee, I just sat on the couch and waited for her to come out of her office. That night I got a bone marrow after dinner. At the moment I’m averaging one a month, so this is a big challenge.

2) Learn a new human-like trick. I have nailed the basics. Sit, down, roll, shake. But I want to learn something more complicated. I’m no puppy, but I think I still have it in me to learn a few new tricks. My mom’s sister’s dog Ripley can lay “like a lady.” Someone will show her a treat and say “down.” Then they say “like a lady” and she crosses her front paws. Cute huh?

3) Stop eating dead things. This is a fairly recent set back probably due to hunting season. But I just got a taste for it and it’s becoming a problem. I'm not sure this is a realistic goal for me, but everyone else seems to set diet aspirations they have no intention of keeping, so why not?

So good luck with your own resolutions in 2014. Happy New Year!

J Dawg, who voices the paws-on-the-ground perspective of island life, is created by Janet Forest, owner of Nantucket Pet Sitter, which you can follow on Facebook, too.