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Leaning in enough
Trying to do more of the same in 2023.
I’ve never really known how to feel about the new year.
For some time, I thought it was kind of silly to only truly take inventory once a year. But all the same, every year I always found myself doing the same old tired things everyone else does. Setting some arbitrary number of books to read, revisiting (the concept of) my gym membership, setting travel goals, etc.
If I just accomplish these few things this year, I will be a much happier form of myself.
Most of our goals are just an effort to minimize regret. We want to read more to unlock more possibilities, we want to work out more to live healthier, and we want to maximize our time with family. We set goals to travel because how else will we possibly make time to see Niagra falls?
(By the way, it’s entirely overrated, trust me here.)
When I think about a lot of my regrets in life so far, they are always fears of not having done enough. Did I speak my mind and say everything I wanted to say? Did I give enough of myself? Did I finish what I set out to do? There’s an abundant amount of opportunity available to us all in our lives, given you want it enough.
Was I making the best possible use of my limited amount of time in the world?
Whether it was a part of any plan, I set out to do a lot this last year and I’d say I accomplished a good majority of it. I stayed in 10 states, visited Mexico, learned how to golf, went to five weddings, and got to celebrate Thanksgiving with my Mom and Christmas with my Dad. I also ran three events, pivoted my career, began building a business, published more writing, and met a lot of incredible people!
At least for me, I’ve come to realize that a good reason I believe last year was so great, was because I really leaned into things. I continued to take my career more seriously, I’ve committed to watering relationships that really matter to me, and I’m still trying to challenge what I believe I’m capable of. I think I’m better at having difficult conversations, and I’ve finally found my footing with work.
In most areas, I can comfortably sit back and know I gave it my all.
While I’d love to come up with ten random goals for the year, I think a beautiful part about life is not knowing what’s in store for me yet. A few years ago I wouldn’t have thought I would be where I am, doing what I do. I could decide to be a painter tomorrow if I wanted to. I might be able to figure out this keyboard if I commit enough to it. In another world (had I not changed majors), I could have been a software developer. I might have been married by now, I could have stayed in Colorado or moved farther west. Heck, I could still be selling protection plans at Staples.
To me, the only thing worth trying to control is the amount of effort I give looking forward. It’s not rewarding to have one foot into things just as it’s not very fun to sit in a bath of lukewarm water.
I probably won’t have 10 random goals this year. Instead, I’m just going to try to more of the same. But better.
I look at this next year with so much optimism.
And with that, another year has gone by! Around three years ago I started sending these weekly, which became monthly, which became damn near quarterly now. Having said that, I discovered that this is my 70th issue which feels oddly special.
Below are just a few of many of my favorite memories from the last year.
Wishing you and yours the best in 2023,