As the year winds down

This year has been one of flurry. The activity level and the constant changes, challenges and demands on the limited commodity of time, have been exceeded only by opportunities, growth and personal/professional development. This belief was my own, but has been validated by those I’ve found the time to consult. Everyone seems to have lost the bulk of this year in a blink, and agree that it has been a year of unprecedented activity.This has been a tremendous year. It’s been challenging and gratifying. But, it leaves me with a couple questions:

  • Who made it jump to December already?
  • Who is going to clean up the debris left in the wake of the tornado that is 2003?
  • Is there anything I can do now to make 2004 move a bit slower?

I’ve decided that slowing down and wising up should be the first order of business for the New Year. I had a call this morning from one of my favorite politically active family members asking me to volunteer for one of Kentucky’s new Governor’s committees. All I have to do is go to his website and fill out a form, she assures me. Since there is a big push here for rural-based technology advancement, and since I’ve advocated independence through technology for years, it seems to be a perfect fit.

Besides, what shall I do with all my time, once my current volunteer commitments conclude?

Then I looked at my calendar…and then, my “to do” list. Then I took a glance around my office. And I think about the number of times this year that I’ve told my family and friends “I’m sorry, I can’t, I have to work.” And it hit me. This year, I’ll refrain from my usual overload and over commitment habits. This time, in 2004, I’ll not get involved in outside work until I get my own inner landscape a bit more serene. Maybe 2004 is the year to regain a firm two-handed grasp on sanity, simplicity and satisfaction.

So as everyone is starting to make lists of resolutions, I think I’ll refrain. I think I’ll begin my own year with some herbal tea, instead of espresso. And I think I’ll focus on the big picture more, and fret over the crisis d’jour a bit less.

Today, I’ll spend a bit more time counting my blessings than I do lamenting my difficulties. Tomorrow I’ll begin a habit of creating “smile lines” instead of digging furrows in my brow. And soon, I’ll greet a new year that will be the best to date, and bid farewell to one that has taught me more about what’s important than any that have preceded it.

And if I’m lucky, I’ll be able to count 2004 as the best year to date, a title currently held by 2003.

All my best to you and yours this holiday season!

Note: This letter first appeared in the December 2003 issue of the IVAACast.