On French Fries and Shutting Up

I stopped making new years resolutions years ago when they just didn’t work for me. I get that it’s a convenient time to start something, but really, come spring (or sadly, February) how often do we keep them? I have other posts about how resolutions suck for me so this isn’t new.

Last year, I decided to set goals rather than resolutions. There was only one on my list I really wanted to keep:

Eat Healthier.

Note: that does not say Healthy. I didn’t rule out cookies or candy, I just wanted to try to eat healthier. I have a sensitive stomach that has a tendency to act out at the rudest times. Like seriously stomach, just let me eat this entire pizza in peace for once.

Anyway, for the goal of eating healthier, I had this theory with fast food places. Since my weakness has always been french fries, if I went without french fries, would I still want the Big Mac? I craveeeee fries – curly, thin, waffle, sweet potato, whatever I just need them with every meal. Or I did.


The answer was NO. My theory was correct.

I went an entire year without french fries (minus the time I forgot and put an Arby’s curly fry in my mouth and spit it out, forcing myself to believe the salty goodness that touched my lips wasn’t delicious). In turn, I went an entire year with only the occasional fast food stop.

Sure, I kept my “New Years Goal,” more than that, I learned about myself in the process. I learned I do have self-control, I can live without the greasy and fried foods that are quick pick-me-ups, the desire for the thing I gave up did go away even if it took months. And I learned that goals take one step at a time no matter how big or small.

After learning what I did from my goal in 2015, for 2016 I wanted a word instead of a phrase. One word I could look back on, try to better myself in some way with or even just float back to now and then. The word that kept sneaking back to my mind:


I’m not the quietest person or the most gentle. I don’t need silence to work. Quiet isn’t always my thing. But in the 9 days of 2016, I’ve had to continually remind myself to SHUT.UP.

Don’t be surprised if I end up getting “shut up” tattooed on my arm, because the amount of times I have had to tell my brain, my half of the conversation, my immediate comebacks to shut up has been enormous.

In order to enjoy the quiet, I have to go out of my way at times. I’ve interrupted my day for a walk or a trip to my car or a lap around the office to step back, breathe, and just be for a minute.

For this year, I hope the lessons keep coming, and I never stop growing. In the quiet (and sometimes the loud), I want to push forward. I don’t want to stall in the pit of negativity or be complacent with the greasy fry goals I had. Another year passes too quickly.

May this be the year we not only watch for opportunities for growth but go looking for them one step at a time.

Also, I’ve had fries twice now since the ball dropped and who would have known, they still are just as fried and just as stomachache inducing.


2 thoughts on “On French Fries and Shutting Up

  1. The topic of finding more time for quite and peace is gaining in popularity in the business community. This time can help you regain focus and sort of re-boot so to speak. Even scholars are promoting the 20 minute nap at work. (Maybe I need one of those google pods for my office).

    If you do continue to shut up, please don’t include the written word- as I enjoy all of your blogs….

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