2009 – Entering the Stretch Zone

New Years is around the corner and, guess what, it’s time for New Years Resolutions! Yay! But before I come to that there are a number of things that happened this year that changed the way these resolutions are going to look. Lot’s of new impulses, some of them found online, some offline. The biggie this year is definitely my move to the USA. And getting my degree. And the move involved some serious decluttering (with the help of my significant other, I must add). One great thing of finally being done with school is that I can read what I want without taking mental notes all the time. Total guilt-free reading! God, I missed that. A second thing I came to love again / rediscover is NWOBHM – don’t judge me, that shit is awesome.

So the one thing that sits behind this year’s resolutions is the “Make it new!” motto. Sometimes it requires going back to the roots and start again. Rediscover things that you thought you’d not be interested in anymore, or that you stopped doing because you became too ‘adult’ for it. I know I did that. And the great thing about a) American culture (to some extent) and b) moving to a foreign country is that you get the chance to reinvent yourself. And that’s a good thing. Change is a good thing. So my online inspiration this year came from Merlin Mann’s move to change the direction and content of his website 43folders.com and explaining the reasons for doing so in his posts and in an essay called “Better” on his personal blog. I think these posts are a good example on how important it is to realize that it’s time for change and then follow up on this realization. Especially when it concerns something you’ve been doing for years and that has become routine. Make the move into the stretch zone! What are my stretch zones for the next year?

  • making more conscious food choices. I like eating meat, but eat it rarely. My usual, off-holiday eating habits are mostly veggie-based and I try to avoid processed food as much as I can. While I can’t get behind the idea of veganism 100% I want to read up on this a little bit, as it seems like vegans spend much more time figuring out what to eat and in which quantities. Plus, the stuff does look delicious. Some neat recipes can be found at the Post Punk Kitchen, but there are tons of resources on the internet.
  • woodcarving and -turning. Everybody needs a hobby, right? You can make some awesome stuff plus it’s fun.
  • take more pictures. Pretty self-explanatory. There’s only one way to take better pictures, which is simply take as many as possible. I’m not taking as many as I want to, but I got to taking pictures on a consistent basis, which is better than not taking any at all.
  • write more. I guess that one is on everybody’s list for the new year (and the last years) but hey, it doesn’t hurt to remind yourself. And I’ve gotten better with it in the last year, wrote more, did some writing exercises…

So, yeah, that’s pretty much it. Aside from the obvious, like trying to be a better person/husband/friend, etc. But you know that.

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