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New Year's Resolution:
Bring a little of that
French "Ooh la la" into your life!

by Jamie Cat Callan

Jamie Cat Calan

Well, it's that time of year once again. The time we come up with our grand resolutions and major goals.

We're full of high-flying ideas on self-improvement and over-hauling our entire lives. By February, we often feel discouraged and exhausted and oh dear, it's so dark and cold we just want to curl up in bed with a box of Pepperidge Farm cookies!

How about this for an idea: In 2010, let's consider being more French. Let's try to bring small, but meaningful changes into our new year.

Here are ten simple steps to help you get started. You just might find that there's a whole lot more joie de vivre in your world than you ever imagined!

  1. Be a good conversationalist.
    And an even better listener. Plan to get out more this year to mix and mingle. Start up a conversation with someone new. You never know what can happen!
  2. Throw A Dinner Party.
    Invite old and new friends. Show off your culinary and entertaining skills. Oh, and if it's a sit down party, make sure you arrange the table girl-boy-girl-boy. That's very French.
  3. Wear a red slip under a black dress.
    I don't think I need to say any more, except maybe ooh la la!
  4. Get out in the sunshine.
    Okay, at this time of year we've only got a few hours of light, but the walking and fresh air will do more for your body and soul than an hour on the treadmill!
  1. Buy some new lingerie.
    And make sure the bra and panties match. You'll see. Even though no one knows about your silky new underthings but you, you'll feel more confident and so sensual! Honestly, this one simple act can change your life.
  2. Go ahead and be brainy!
    French women know that being smart is hot. Also, reading an interesting book at your local café is a great way to get out in the world and be seen. Be sure to get yourself a pair of very stylish reading glasses. Trés chic!
  3. Be Natural.
    The French look is natural. They don't go in for blow-drying the hair quite so much, but rather, they embrace the "just out of bed slightly tousled look." Make 2010 your year for breaking that blow-dryer addiction. The planet will thank you for it.
  4. Less is More.

    And since we're still not quite out of the recession, this is a good thing. Try wearing a little less make up and buying fewer clothes and stuff. Of course, you can always fancy up an old favorite by adding new baubles, great boots – and always a scarf! (A must-have for French women!)
  5. Adopt a Rescue cat or dog.
    Yes, that's right. It's very French to love your pets. A little warm and furry animal can be a wonderful way to lift your spirits on a cold wintry day.
  6. Find pleasure every day.
    Don't deprive yourself when it comes to food. Just a little chocolate can be a wonderful thing and keep you from feeling deprived and over-indulging when no one is looking.

Oh, and take pleasure in all the things you have in your life right now. Don't save the good china for a special occasion or wait until you have a special event to wear your grandmother's pearls. Today is a special occasion! Embrace the moment!

And here's my champagne toast to you: Live for today! Enjoy the beauty in your world every day!

Happy New Year!

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Jamie Cat Callan is the author of French Women Don’t Sleep Alone (Citadel, 2009) and the forthcoming Bonjour, Happiness!

She grew up under the tutelage of her French grandmother who taught her the secrets to how French women find and keep love.

Jamie is the creator of The Writer’s Toolbox and the author of Hooking Up or Holding Out.

Her writing has appeared in The New York Times’ Modern Love column, Best American Erotica, and Bliss Magazine.

When she’s not traveling, Jamie lives on Cape Cod, with her husband, a climate change scientist.

Visit her website at www.JamieCatCallan.com

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