This time of year is filled with countdowns. Countdowns to new beginnings, long-awaited endings, and unexpected surprises. I don’t know about you, but for me, 2010 whizzed by in a frenzied flash of ups and downs. I started the year in DC, ended up in BC, and experienced and learned more than I could have imagined in between.
They say that the new year is a good time to make resolutions. I guess that’s because the new year brings with it a clean slate. An entire year ahead waiting to be filled with new decisions, goals, and achievements. Everyone gets a chance to start over.
Now I’m not saying that I haven’t made resolutions before, because my Januaries are often filled with failed attempts to live up to my idealistic resolutions. And often, the same resolutions are saved and recycled the next year. But as each December comes to a close, the new year brings a renewed sense of hope and motivation.
I’ve always been wary of going public with my resolutions, because that means I’m held accountable and my weaknesses are exposed. But ultimately, I realize that it’s not the success but rather the process that I’m after.
So here goes. In the spirit of 2011, here are a few of my resolutions for the new year:
1. Be more social.
Those of you who knew me in high school might be surprised to see me in class now. Maybe it was the large lecture style of college courses that did it, but these days I’m more than content to sit back in class and just listen. I do what I’m told and rarely put up my hand. It’s not that I’m bored or uninterested; I’ve just settled into a state of complacency as a quiet student.
Having taught a variety of students, I realize that my lack of input in class, as well as my tendency to keep to myself outside of class, can put me at a disadvantage. At the heart of it all, I need to re-learn how to value my thoughts and input in order to build up the courage to share more with others. Like right now, I suppose.
2. Be honest.
They say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. And since I can remember, I’ve been flattering people. So much so that I’m starting to lose sight of what I like and what I want to do. I’m so busy listening to others that I’ve forgotten to listen to myself. But that stops now. I owe it to myself to be honest with myself, starting now.
Before this year, I wasn’t a huge coffee drinker, but you can rarely catch me these days without a fresh cup in my hand. Sleep has become a luxury, and meals have taken a backseat to assignments and urgent deadlines.
I mean it when I say that I very much love everything about game design. But I also realize that my current pace is unsustainable. It may seem counterintuitive to resolve to relax before what will likely become the most intense months of the program, but I need to remind myself that with a refreshed mind comes more creative ideas. At least, I hope so.
Thanks for everything, 2010. Ready or not, here comes 2011!