Wednesday, December 29, 2010

New Years Goals

I've never been too great at New Years Resolutions. I used to make super ambitious ones like to not fight with my brother for the whole year or to not eat anything remotely unhealthy. Needless to say, I would fail miserably, usually within 72 hours of making the resolution.

I also have never been really great at setting life long goals. During sophomore year I went to this workshop put on by the head editor of the "Chicken Soup for the Soul" books and his talk was about what all successful people have in common. His message was that the successful people he knew had created a bucket list(list of goals to achieve before you die) at a young age, and had persistently worked through the list during their life. I attempted to start a bucket list, but I was not very good at making one of these either. My goals and aspirations changed to much, so the only thing I have consistently had on my list is white water rafting down the Grand Canyon before I die. This seems like a really empty list to me.

Needless to say, at times I was concerned about being successful in the future since I didn't follow these stereotypical traits of successful people. However, I realized at some point that I was completely forgetting about something I did every year that worked way better for me then any of the silly methods listed above.

It all started freshman year during basketball season. Our coach made us right down goals for the season. My main goal was to play varsity by the end of the season. However, I was afraid of being judged or being considered arrogant for thinking I was even capable of this goal, so I didn't write it down for them to see. I kept thinking about the different goals I had and finally wrote them down over Christmas break. I expanded from basketball season goals to goals from the whole year. For the most part, I forgot about writing them down, but when I achieved my goal of playing varsity I definitely remembered. In my enthusiasm I went and wrote the date I achieved the goal in very excited writing. It was an incredible feeling. After that I forgot about the goals until the next Christmas break, but when I found them again it felt so good to read over them and check off the ones I'd achieved that I decided to do it again.

Ever since that year, at some point over Christmas break I will write down my goals for the upcoming year. I value the fact that they are completely private. I can make each goal as ambitious or petty as I want, and I can say from previous experience that they range from the goal to talk to my crush to goals of long term mission trips or obtaining a full ride scholarship. Shoot, this year I even made a new years wish, because its my goal list and I can do whatever the heck I want :)

Going through the prior years' goals never gets old. I get to see how my focus has changed, and what goals I've reached. It's an awesome feeling, and its something I plan on doing for the rest of my life.

So for all of my friends out there, I challenge you to do the same. Sit down and think about anything you'd like to accomplish in the next year, and write it down. Put it away somewhere you'll be able to find it in a year, and then forget about it till this time of year rolls around. It'll be well worth it.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

when you reach the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on

A lot has happened since I last wrote. The couple weeks of happiness and bliss ended very abruptly. I think it started with shitty weather over thanksgiving break cramping my style. Then came the the series of phone calls and texts the night before thanksgiving that came persistantly until i answered. Wanted to prevent another 45 missed call night so I answered and got entertained by "he who must not be named." I just say this because I feel that's how my family approaches him, like he's effing Voldermort or something. The call left me unphased, as I am in a great relationship, and have been unphased by this fellows shenanigans for the past year at least. However, I managed to let it slip to my lovely mom the reason I was so drowsy the next day. Somehow the info was passed to my dad, who drilled me over the breakfast table where my grandma was listening. An anger possessed her that I've never seen before and she let me have it. I have never in my life had her yell at me, so myself and the rest of my family members were fairly astounded to say the least. So I guess that's what I get for trying to do a good deed for an old, (although admittedy crazy) friend. Ooops

Next we were launched back into school, where I must say, I feel like teachers were giving this very specific message "You enjoyed your Thanksgiving break? WEll F*** you. We are going to make your life hell" Along with three final exams to take (2 weeks before finals) I managed to get my car stuck 3 times in 1 evening, kill my battery and have to revive it at 5am, spend $586 on tires, and play a key role in our team losing in an intramural basketball game. To top the week off I got a little too enthusiastic with my celebrating on Friday and learned that I in NO WAY can handle taking 3 shots in 1 evening. Yipes. Let's just say when it comes to puking I was going for a marathon, not a sprint.

To say the least, it was a rough week, but I survived, and all the thing that happened were fairly petty. Being busy 18 hours a day will prepare me for later in life I'm sure. The next week took its toll on me too, but some good things happened during this time as well. I got to go to my first ever Apple Cup, and even though we lost, it was lots of fun. I've been up to the mountain 3 times to attempt snowboarding; although I'm not sure how I feel about the sport, I love the adventure and the challenge. I've made new friends, and bonded with old ones before they head off into the next chapter of their life.

Shockingly, I didn't do super well on my 3 tests. I've had a few minor meltdowns and if you were one of the people who helped me through; thank you.

I guess what I've learned these past three weeks (or re-learned) is: things go wrong, people steal your ideas, people get sick, people say things that hurt your feelers and sometimes you fail. It's okay though. Life goes on because when things go wrong, someone's act of kindness helps you out of a rough patch. When people are jerks, you're friends will be there to back you up and laugh it off. When you're sad, you have people to hold you both literally and figuratively. Lastly, when I fail I learn much more about how to be successful in the future. I'm not sure where that came from or if it makes sense. I need to get back to studying though. I'm looking forward to reconnecting with everyone over break!