My 52-week New Year’s Resolution

Update!

I made a post about this project on reddit.com on 12/28/12 and it went viral pretty quickly. We set a new record for most promise card requests in a day: 518! Thank you to everyone who voted on the idea and shared it through social media! I’ve received two media requests and look forward to sharing the message with those audiences. It make take me a while to process all these orders, but as sure as the sun will rise, I will.

My father tried to teach me the importance of staying true to your word, partially because I wasn’t great at keeping with a commitment. I think about my dad everyday and that memory helps me become a better person. I still have a long way to go, so for my New Year’s Resolution I will be completing one promise every week for 52 weeks. These 52 goals will help me grown and become a more well-rounded person. I will certainly be doing a number of charitable projects in 2013 for because I said I would, but those won’t be considered a part of this personal mission.

“You must be the change you want to see in the world.” – Gandhi

On Sunday of each week, I will pick a promise card at random out of a hat (a sombrero actually). I will fulfill that promise at some point during that week. The topic of each promise varies greatly, but they all tie back to a charitable cause that I will highlight on this website. Each week I will explain why I chose the goal and I will feature pictures and/or video of the promise in action. The following is a list of the 52 promises that make up my 2013 New Year’s Resolution:

  1. Donate my clothes that I don’t wear anymore.
  2. Clean out the laundry room.
  3. Give blood.
  4. Put registration stickers on the kayak.
  5. Properly recycle all of the old electronics and batteries in the house.
  6. Mail Hallie a letter.
  7. Learn how to tie 5 new types of knots.
  8. Start a physical photo album with 100 of my favorite photos.
  9. Update my top 10 online accounts with more secure passwords.
  10. Start poker night.
  11. Pick a random house in Lakewood and do yard work for them.
  12. Get my dad’s lawn mower fixed.
  13. Prepare and postmark 50 personal thank you cards.
  14. Walk the furthest distance I’ve ever travelled on foot.
  15. Write my senator and congressman.
  16. Teach my grandma how to call me on Skype.
  17. Make kimchi.
  18. Watch Food Inc.
  19. Buy a veteran a gift to show appreciation for their service.
  20. Record my dog snoring.
  21. Plant a tree.
  22. Send flowers to my Grandma Kemp.
  23. Drink a glass of rain water.
  24. Sew a hole closed.
  25. Learn SOS in Morse code
  26. Learn how to say “thank you” in 20 languages
  27. Ride a bicycle to work.
  28. See how many numbers of Pi I can memorize.
  29. Make home cleaning products.
  30. Climb a tree.
  31. Change a baby’s diaper.
  32. Take an I.Q. test.
  33. Pick up trash on the side of the road.
  34. Watch “Gone with the Wind” for the first time.
  35. Create a last will and testament.
  36. Complete a pilot for a radio show with my friends.
  37. Create a “bucket list.”
  38. Watch Paranormal Activity 4 alone.
  39. Make an appointment to see a doctor for an annual checkup.
  40. Teach someone how to throw a punch.
  41. Write a song.
  42. Learn how to make a pie from scratch.
  43. Build something out of wood.
  44. Change the posture of all of my chairs.
  45. Go to the Great Lakes Science Center for the first time.
  46. Create a series of graphs that describe how I spend my money.
  47. Draw a self-portrait.
  48. Learn how to play Euchre.
  49. Read a book about how to successfully run a non-profit.
  50. Start a fire using primitive techniques.
  51. Make something useful out of trash.
  52. Learn how to select good produce.