I once heard an anecdote from a Jewish man, then promptly forgot it. What I memetically remembered, in effect, was “if you attack the Jews, they’ll make a new holiday”.
What happens to us isn’t as important as what we do with it.
For Christmas, my family makes a tradition of ramen noodles to remind us of where we came from, back when we lived in our car when my wife was pregnant with our firstborn.
This New Year’s, we created a new tradition, inspired by the alcohol-induced traditions of our forefathers:
- Take stock of what we’ve done in the past year by pulling out our jar of things we’ve done the past year (obviously, not applicable the first year, so just reflect on the past year in a general sense)
- Keep all the things we have accomplished in a big jar. Things we still want to do can go into the “do next year” jar.
- Write down the things we want to do within the next year, each on a separate piece of paper, defined as SMART goals:
- Time-sensitive (a year, duh)
- Stow the jar away in a conspicuous place.
To add extra accountability, I’ll give you mine as a form of exhibitionist masochism:
- Drop to 280 and stay there. Because I’m fat.
- Finish my Language Map. It’s a fat flowchart of all the computer programming languages, at least everything made from 2020 back.
- Clear out my media library. Got lots of free-hanging danglers that I don’t know what to do with.
- I have a few thousand articles. I’ve been hoarding them, just in case the internet stops being a thing. I intend to make them all clearly actionable by linking them to a project.
- I have many wow-this-would-be-fun-I-can’t-wait-to-check-this-out-when-I’m-not-doing-other-stuff things. I plan to get to where all my entertainment (music, videos, articles) are consumed as they come in
- We want to move to Texas. Easier said than done, but not by much when you’ve moved as much as I have.
- I have a toolbox. I have a few hundred more things to put in it. I want to finish that before I get to my broader career ambitions.
So there you go. It’s been a good year for us, and my family intends to make next year even better. Things may not get better outwardly, but our responses define how reality goes, not the other way around.
Just remember that fact when you turn on literally anything about politics. I can only trust myself and God(s) to clean up my own life.