Interactive: New You Resolutions 2020 (Part 1)

January 2nd. The holidays were officially over, and everyone was expected back in the office, and Jim, like always, was dressed and out the door right on time…but this year, he just wasn’t feeling that excited. Maybe it was the fact that he got passed over for a promotion again. Maybe it was because, despite the fact that his yearly review at the beginning of December was good, his bonus this year was smaller than the last–and smaller than a few other co-workers he chatted with about it. Maybe it was because he was turning 35 in a couple of months, and 35 was somehow worse to him than turning 30 had been. At 30, you start to think you have things figured out. At 30, you feel like you can start blazing, full speed ahead. But at 35, with all of those goals undone, still at the same job, just feeling fatter, balding more, without a girlfriend, living alone, working long hours for no real good reason. Jim wasn’t blazing at 35, he was in a rut.

Worse still, Jim didn’t see any real way out of it. He hated his job, but it was comfortable, even if he didn’t have much free time. He hated living alone, but every attempt at a relationship with anyone, seemed to stall out in a matter of weeks. He wasn’t happy with his body, but he also wasn’t particularly interested in doing anything to change it. He wanted to change, but he had no real idea of what that change could possibly look like. Thankfully, someone out there had more imagination than Jim, and is willing to do something about that.

Jim got in his car with a sigh, thankful that traffic was light at least, and got to the office a bit early, to get caught up on the status of some of his projects. He arrived at his desk, the first employee there, like usual, and found a golden envelope sitting on his keyboard, with the words “New You Resolutions” embossed on the front. Curious as to what this might be, he opened the envelope, pulled out the stationary inside, and read the note that had been left for him.

Dear Jim,

We here at New You Resolutions understand that change is hard. We make it easy. No need to struggle, trying to figure out what to do next–we take all the stress out of your New Year’s goals, and make sure, no matter what, you end this year an entirely new person, one you won’t even recognize!

Our team has crafted a resolution plan especially for you, which will be delivered to you in a matter of stages, as we see your response to your plan. Don’t worry if some of these seem a bit scary, or out of character for you. Change requires sacrifice, but we take all the worry out of the process without patented resolution drive technology. Our organization will also make sure you have everything you need to keep your resolutions fulfilled this year, so you can just focus on changing!

Now, we’re sure you’re curious. Here’s your first resolution:

Jim, you resolve to quit your job today.

Pack up your things, put in your notice, and we’ll see you at home, Jim, were we’ll get you on the road to a whole new you!

Jim read the strange note twice, and then looked around the office. Was it a prank? It had to be a prank, right? Someone telling him that he should quit, but…who? Feeling a bit disconcerted, he sat down, pulled open a drawer, and started pulling everything out of it that belonged to him, and setting it on the desktop. When one was finished, he opened another, and did the same. He stopped himself for a moment, asking himself what he was doing exactly, but he didn’t quite know. It occured to him, after a moment, that he needed a box. A box to put everything in! He emptied out a copy paper box, and kept loading all of his stuff into it, panic rising, as he realized he was doing it. He was getting ready to quit his job, and for some reason, there was nothing he could do to stop himself. 

But he needed this job! How would he pay rent? What about health insurance? He didn’t have contacts anywhere, he didn’t know where else he could work, he just kept loading up his stuff, and when he was finished, he sat and waited at his desk, until his boss wandered in late, and obviously still a bit hungover. Jim went straight to his office, handed him the resignation letter he’d drafted, effective immediately, turned in his badge, and he was out of there by eleven, his box of stuff in his arms, more terrified than he could ever recall being in his life.

He drove home, trying not to think about what was happening to him. It had to be a dream, some fucked up nightmare he’d wake up from at any moment, but nothing he did seemed to work. He pulled into the garage of the small house he rented, went inside, and as promised, a second envelope was waiting for him right there, on the table by the door. With shaking hands, Jim tore it open, pulled out the note, and read it. As promised, there were more resolutions printed there–and Jim was going to find them all just as difficult to disobey as the first one. After all, change was hard–but Jim was going to be changing whether he wanted to or not.

Alright! I enjoyed this interactive last year, and thought I’d pull it out again for this year. We’ll follow a few different characters through the year, and see how their new resolutions treat them along the way–and they might pick up a few more as the year goes on. An important note! A lot of these might have more options than my usual polls! That usually means you get to select more options than the usual two. Make sure you’re voting for as many options as you can, or you’re leaving votes on the table! For this poll, you get three selections. Patrons have their bonus poll as well, over here.

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