With each passing year (Happy New Year, btw), and each passing job, I've come to realize that--with humans--the Thing is never really about the Thing. An angry toddler isn't mad that you gave him apple juice, he's mad that he feels woozy after a really long nap. A theatre director doesn't really hate a particular costume, he just can't get that actor to stop messing with his hands. You don't really hate that guy in his S.U.V., you just don't like being cut off in traffic (and the subsequent feelings of being out of control of your environment).
I am a big believer in Socrates' maxim that "an unexamined life is not worth living." (Therefore, I blog?) I think it's important to take a closer look at why you have made certain decisions or taken specific actions. Especially if that activity makes you sad or angry. Something is going on and it's probably a lot deeper than the incident that sparked those reactions. Do you really think that grocery checker wanted you to have bruised bananas?
With all the resolving going on these days--what with the new year and new decade and all--I came across a interesting excercise in John Mora's Triathlon 101 (more on that project later), to help determine why you decide to pursue a certain goal. He suggests you start a list of reasons for why you are doing something, maybe 5 items or so, and then keep coming back to the list and try to come up with 50 different reasons. By really thinking about your motivations, you get closer to the true reason you are doing something and also can deepen your resolve to see it through (or, perhaps, you'll see that the activity isn't such a good idea after all and should be let go).
See what you come up with...sometimes the big, overall reason is obviously #1; sometimes the true rationale for change is more sneaky. Why do we decide to "resolve" anyway, especially if it's the same resolution every year (and, therefore, never achieved)? Maybe it's time to tweak the goal or even discard it. OR, better yet, by looking at what you are trying to change, you will discover what you really want to do and can set that as your goal.
Anyway, I thought it was an intriguing exercise. I hope you all (in the Northern Hemisphere) are keeping warm--I resolve to go put on another layer...