Out with the Old

‘Tis the season to reflect on 2015. I’ve had better years, but to be fair, I’ve also had worse. To put a rather challenging year in perspective, my thoughts turn to where I’ve been, where I am right now, and where I want to go. As Dr. Phil says, “How’s that (the way you live your life) working for you?”

My end-of-year “life assessments” are like the performance appraisals I get at work — without all the forms, anxiety, or dread. This last post of 2015 is about the things I want to leave behind.

Complacency. When I reach my destination, I get comfortable, put my feet up, and relax. Whether I like it or not, things change. Resistance is futile and counterproductive. Life is about the journey — not the destination. Keep moving or get left behind.

Planning my Life. Much of the planning I’ve done has been an attempt to control the future. My plans reflect the way I want things to be with little consideration for the way the world works. Unpredictable events render irrelevant the best laid plans. Some planning is necessary, but the focus should be preparing for whatever happens.

Expectations. Projecting my ideas about how to think or act onto anyone else is asking for trouble. Expectations are little seeds that grow into resentments, disappointments, and hurt feelings. Getting all worked up because someone doesn’t do what I expected is more about me than them.

Beating Myself Up. The downside of my education and training is the guilt that comes with knowing better. There’s always something I should (or shouldn’t) be doing. What’s done is done, so let it go, bro. Move on, and make a better decision next time.

Bullshitting Myself. Sometimes I sell myself loads of bull to justify something I should or shouldn’t be doing. Lying to myself is just pathetic because, like, I know I’m not being honest. The two donuts I “earn” for going to the gym offset any benefits from working out. It’s a cruel, cruel world we live in….

Wasting Time. My life is filled with an amazing variety of ways to piss away hours and hours. Most add little or no value to my existence, and yet…I persist. Put that silly thing away!  I’ve got more important things to do.

Thinking it’s about me. I am not the center of the universe. A lot of the stuff I internalize isn’t about me at all. I’ve improved a lot in this area, but still have plenty of room to grow.

Regrets. Beating myself up for what I could have done differently serves no purpose. I’ve had ample opportunity in the past year to see that “my way” wouldn’t have worked out nearly so well as the way things have turned out. Try not to repeat the same mistakes and keep moving forward.

I may have missed a couple of things, but that’s my list. What will you leave behind?

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