In a little over 12 hours, 2008 will be in the books. I, for one, will be reasonably happy to see it go. I'm rather glad that we didn't write one of those year-end Christmas letters this year. It would have said, "nothing much changed, kids grew, no major highlights." Which is fine, I guess--not every year can be a banner year. Life is seasonal, and 2008 was one of those years where my fields lay fallow. But that season is important, too, and can lead to bumper crops later on.
I have finished (for now) my navel-gazing and made a few decisions about my list of resolutions. I think the obvious thread running through all of them is more proactivity, or at least, less wasted opportunities. A couple of my goals are phrased as negatives: I will spend less time (especially first thing in the morning) reading dozens of web pages. Years ago, I stopped subscribing to the local paper because I was giving the first hour of my day to it when my stated priorities (God, family) were elsewhere. Now, I'm reading that same sports page and much, much more at my computer screen. First-cup-of-coffee reading is going to be the Bible in 2009. I'm also going to waste less time in the hour between the last school bell at 3:05 and practice at 4:15. Some days, that's a legitimate work time. And when it is, I'll work to the best of my ability. But on days when that time doesn't belong to anyone else, I'm going to fit in a workout, even if it's only two miles. Finally, when I get home, I'm not going to turn on junk TV. (And yes, even the news can be junk TV!) If I want to sit around, I'm going to read real books.
As for the specifics of goals previously discussed, I am going to plan on reading the 1-Year Bible again, and I have enlisted my buddy Chad as an accountability partner. We'll catch up by email once or twice a week and keep each other honest. As for the running, it's a little more amorphous. I'm not plugging in a hard-and-fast number of runs or miles. But if I use my pre-practice time as I resolve, the math will take care of itself. My average year for the past 11 has been 126 runs and 500 miles (which, for those who like math, means an average of about 4 miles a run, which historically has meant about a half-hour on the roads). Those numbers seem a bit ambitious in light of the past two years of sub-par, inconsistent running, but if I just RUN, the running gets easier and the numbers creeep up of their own accord. One thing is for sure, though--I plan to race again this year. I haven't picked a goal race (or races) yet, and I'm not setting any time goals at this point. But in a month I'll be in the "masters" age group, and I want to formalize that with racing.
Finally, I want to count my blessings more explicitly this year. I may do some of that online. I intend to enjoy my awesome family and my really cool job and not take them for granted.
Happy New Year to anybody who reads this. May any resolutions you set be successful.