Take Ten: My New Year’s Resolution

New Years is so soon upon us. And resolutions and New Year go hand in hand. But to be honest, I’m not so great at resolutions. I’m part of the statistic that shows the vast majority of resolutionists <– I don’t think that was a word before, but it is now…  Right…the statistic: the vast majority of people do NOT keep their resolutions.

Well, this year is going to be different, and it’s going to be different because it’s not an effort toward a great end-goal–like the year I was going to lose 1 measly pound a week to get  back to high school size<— end goal. Or the year I was going to get rid of one thing everyday to do massive de-cluttering by the end of the year <— end goal.

Nope. This year’s resolution doesn’t rely on cumulative effect to make it worthwhile. It’s benefits will be felt and enjoyed everyday.

This year’s resolution I’ve dubbed, “take ten”.  The idea is very simple. Put down the  cellphone, walk away from the computer, the TV, put down the game controllers, the…well, you get the idea. Walk away from the distractions. Sit down–hopefully with someone, and talk for ten minutes. Have a meaningful conversation. If you’re alone, take ten for some internal monologue, or if you’re like me, some external monologue. Or talk to the dog or the cat. The point is to disconnect with the digital, and to connect with another living being.

Choose a spot, and go to the same spot day after day. I came up with the idea a couple of months ago, and my husband and I didn’t wait for the New Year to start. We chose the small, front deck with a view of tall hardwoods as take ten spot. We’ve had a few rainy nights that we did move to the back porch.

Recently, it’s been teeth-chattering cold, so our ten minutes outside is often spent talking about how cold we are. ~smiling~ But unless it’s unbearably cold, we’ve discovered that most ten minute talks turn into an hour.

I like the idea of sitting outside, best. Our eyes are drawn to the trees, the clouds, the sunset, the stars. Our conversations are lifted as well, from people and things, to more philosophical ideas.

How about you–do you take ten? Will you take ten? What’s your resolution, if you so indulge?

Happy New Year. 🙂

Author’s edit: We did keep the resolution. And we still–most days, keep it. We go up the lane where we can see the sunset and the moon-rise. The dogs go with us, too.  We often still take an hour or more. Give it a try.

View from front deck.

View from front deck.

Sunset from take ten spot.

Sunset from take ten spot.


Moon from take ten spot.



About Teresa Cypher

I live with my husband in a humble house in the middle of a tall stand of hardwoods, bordered by soybean and corn fields, in western Pennsylvania. Mother of three adult children and "Grammie" to one sweet little girl, I revel in family gatherings and celebrations. My husband and I care for the gardens on our property--our little corner of heaven, have a glass of wine at sunset, and like to watch the stars come out. Currently working in QC and Development for a Bio-technology Company that produces green, agricultural products. I came into the world a creator of stories. Having been born into a litter, the 7th of 8 children, in a farming family, I have spent most of my life trying to be an individual. My dreams took me there. From the time I was a little girl, I was a thinker, spending any time I could find to be alone--the bastion of undisturbed thoughts, dreaming of other worlds and of fairy-tale love. My mind never shut off-- through the years when thoughts allowed me to escape the everyday world of farm life, to the daydreams while I was raising children and being the cook, the baker, the candlestick maker,and the taxi driver-- all while working full time. It took until middle age for me to realize that my meandering mind was writing stories! Once I sat down and started typing, it took 2 months to write my first book. My biggest challenge at first was getting my fingers to type fast enough to keep up with my mind. My daughter bought me a small digital recorder so I could save my thoughts until my fingers could catch up. The story that I wrote, Across The Night Sky ,was years in the making, and timed well...after I had experienced real life and the joys and heartaches it brings. I think that time gave me a well-spring of experiences from which to merge fairy-tale love with the cynicism adult life creates--while never losing sight of the beautiful and wonderful that love is. Writing is my passion...this incredible discovery in mid life that often keeps me up till the wee hours of the morning. I am so very fortunate to have the opportunity to devote my time to something that brings me such joy.
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