You thought this was going to be one of those contemplative New Year’s posts where I dutifully lay out my resolutions to better myself during the next 12 months right? I don’t blame you, the blog world is full of posts like that right now.
But what does that list really accomplish? After all, it isn’t it just a giant list of failures? Things you wanted to accomplish but didn’t, so now you have to try again? That’s just depressing and counterproductive if you ask me. We’re all human so none of us are perfect, and therefore we will never meet expectations all of the time. Why be sadistic? Why remind ourselves of our shortcomings? Everyone except for the most self deluded of us out there know why and how we’re lacking. Lose weight, find a new job, go to the gym everydy…blah blah blah. It’s all so repetitive and in my opinion it’s an exercise in futility.
So instead, here’s my idea…
I’m going to list all of the things I think I did well this year. I’m going to be self-congratulatory and boastful and heap a ton of praise on myself. Because I’m good enough, I’m smart enough, and doggone it people like me.
1) Continue being a good parent: I know I haven’t been perfect, but since becoming a dad in April I think I’ve done a pretty damn good job. I change diapers, I bathe him, I get up for midnight feedings, I clothe him, I play with him and I take care of him. I know I’m tooting my own horn here, but I’ve been kicking fatherhood’s ass and I’m going to continue to make that my #1 priority.
2) Continue to improve the Web site and get my name out there: I’m an Internet and online moron, but with the help of my brother I think we’re doing OK. There’s room for improvement, but a couple of novices have built up a small but loyal following and we continue to see nothing but growth. I got noticed by Parents magazine and (hopefully) will have a piece appearing some time in the near future. Hopefully the added exposure will gain me some recognition that I can continue to build on.
3) Continue to read even more blogs and meet new people: I had no idea starting this blog would lead to forming so many friendships. Some of you I’ve met, others are simply other bloggers who I feel like I’ve known for years. But talking to all of you has been the most pleasant and surprising byproduct of all this and I want more. There are so many great writers out there and I want my blog roll to be nice and fat by this time next year.
4) Continue to fight the good fight at work: As most everyone knows, this is the worst time in history to be a print journalist. Newspapers are shrinking their staff as ad revenues dry up, and people are losing their jobs as the industry changes. No one knows what the future of newspapers are, but it will most assuredly involve online and new media. Yet every reporter I know has continued to do more with less. We’re under extreme pressure and less than ideal circumstances as we watch colleagues hit the unemployment line while we wonder if our entire profession is on the verge of becoming obsolete. Yet the professionalism and dedication I’ve seen lately leads me to believe there will always be a place for true journalists.
5) Continue to take everything in stride and not freak out: Let’s face it, it’s been a tough year. Before I met MJ I would not have dealt with everything as well as I do now. Instead of going straight to the bar when things get rough, I deal with them head on now. And since my greatest fears involve harm coming not to me, but to my friends and family, it’s been hard watching MJ go through this tough stretch. But I like to think I’ve stepped up when needed and I want to continue to do so.
Alright, that’s it. Five things I liked about myself in 2008. I think with all the negativity recently, everyone should list the things they’re proud of accomplishing this year. To hell with shitty resolutions we may or may not keep. Let’s celebrate our successes and screw the failures.
So, what are you proud of?