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Resolved: Achieving What You Want in 2013


Are you the New Year’s Resolution type? I’m not, because I look at January 1st as the day after December 31st and not as a Big Deal Milestone Day. (Yeah, I’m the stay-home-for-New-Year’s-Eve type, but that comes with being a) married for a long time and b) Teh Old) But I’m also the kind of guy who believes in the power of committing to self-improvement, whether it’s to lose weight or get your career in gear or quit smoking or whatever it is you want to do. It doesn’t require the start of a new year. For me, it was on a random day in April last year when I decided I really had no excuse not to lose weight, and I proceeded to do just that with the help of a smartphone app and willpower borne of wanting to look and feel better. But if you need to make a New Year’s resolution to do what you want or need to do, by all means, today’s the day.

To help you along, I’ll pass along this link tweeted today by our own Chris Hardwick for a list of “Top 50 Inspirational and Motivational Quotes to Live By” (New Year’s Resolution: Refrain from being That Guy who notes that it should be “Quotes By Which to Live”), with choice lines from sources as disparate as Nietzsche and Jay-Z, Einstein and Capote, Gandhi and Zappa, and Churchill and Caesar (Sid, not Julius). Some are kind of in the Allegedly Inspirational Office Poster category, but many are the kind of comments that may stick in your head and inspire you to stop making excuses and start doing things.

Of course, also of great help to a lot of folks has been Chris’ book The Nerdist Way, which is still available in hardcover, paperback, audiobook, and e-book editions. Yes, I work for Chris, so you can discount my saying that the book is a valuable source of inspiration for those of a nerd-centric mindset if you wish, but it really is exactly that, and if you’re not convinced, go to a bookstore (should there still be one near you — man, that business is rough these days), page through a copy, and see if you agree. I think you will.

And I’ll throw in my two cents here, as someone who’s had a long, weird career full of odd turns, success and disappointment, failure (hey, if you work in radio, you DO get fired) and accomplishment: Whatever you want to do, do not tell yourself “it’s impossible” (unless, that is, it’s something like “grow a third eye in my forehead” or “become King of England,” which won’t happen in either case unless you’re born into the Royal Family). Whether you want to be, whatever you have to do to accomplish it, give it a shot. You won’t ever be really happy unless you try, and as far as “you won’t make it” is concerned, well, SOMEONE is going to be successful in whatever it is you’re desiring to do or be. WHY NOT YOU? Don’t try and answer that; Just, as a large shoe company in Oregon says, do it.

Here’s more inspiration:

It’s not over. It’s just beginning. The year, your goals, everything. Whatever your age, whatever your situation, it’s time to get to work on whatever you want to accomplish. It’s always time for that. Go!

HT for the cat video: Neatorama

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  1. Arie Regan says:

    I don’t know if it is the new year or my looming birthday, but I’ve been somewhat life-sad for the past few days. Only a little bit sad, surely not depressed so much as keenly aware that I am most certainly not chasing my passion. Despite my crippling inability to determine precisely what that passion may be, at what I consider my well-advanced age – which is very much beside the point, I now see – I know I am not currently taking any real steps in the direction of “me”. Then I read this post, as I am wont to do in the wee small hours of the morning, when my stupid alarm goes off at stupid 5:45AM. Stupid.

    I have also had a very long, rather weird, odd-turn-replete career, and I have found myself, at times, without any sort of singular focus. Jack of many trades, true master of some, passionate for none. I used to really dig what I did, and I pursued it not only with intention, but also with more than a little bit of joy; I was a computer programmer, and it was cool and I was good at it.

    After I left that job (I had reached a career-tipping point after about 10 years with the same company, having progressed through the ranks to a fairly senior role) for something else that I did in fact love but for only a time, I have since then felt a little bit adrift. And, to my secret shame, chagrined in so far as I owe that only to my own inaction.

    None of of what you said is miraculous or life-altering in truth – albeit always eloquent – but most certainly it was a lovely little unsubtle reminder that I’m not too old, and it is my responsibility, and it is by no means impossible. Alas, though, the ever elusive “What the Fuck Do I Actually Want To Do With the Rest Of My Life Question” awaits clarification… I’ll get on that bit next!

    But, enough about me. Thank you for sharing your insights, and your humor, and your life-crap. Please know, I read it all, I dig most of it, and appreciate & respect every single written word.

  2. Joel says:

    That app is amazing! I used it last year and it’s perfect for people who want to really keep track of what they eat, while staying motivated. At the end of everyday the app will tell you how much you will weigh in a month if you keep it up.