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    • CommentTimeJan 2nd 2014
    So the past few days have been all about looking backwards, summarizing a year. It's been hard or even tragic for some, frustrating or encouraging or even thrilling for others.

    But it's time to look forward. The immediate future of 2014 will come whether you're ready for it or not. It's a random point in time, but what is better than now to buckle down and get shit done?

    Time to get specific about what you're trying to pull off. An adventure? An artistic creation? Resolutions to improve yourself? What is your brass ring for this year, what are you going to do to reach it?

    Tell us about it. We'll check in on a monthly basis.
    >I'm a voice over actor. That's my biz and to do it I've got to get serious about devoting business hours to it, not the free time in between screwing around. I don't know how to build a business day for a freelancer, but work days require 8 hours minimum of attention to the biz.
    >I'm working on heading to Burning Man, finally. For me it's mainly money, for a ticket and then for camping gear. I need every break and tip I can find... if I don't swing a ticket before it sells out then I have to face the possibility that I don't make it. So this is something to shoot at for the next three months and then I'll know...
    >Japanese: I will continue to learn it. I will write a fan letter to Dai Sato. I'll get some regular classes or tutoring or something requiring me to work with someone else.
    >I'mma lose 20 pounds. I know this one is terrifically, annoyingly common. But the truth is I need to lose a good 80 pounds to get healthy. That would be nurtz tho, so 20. That's a pound and a half per month. IT means paying attention every day, like a freaking adult.

    Okay. You?
    • CommentTimeJan 2nd 2014
    Finished about half of last year's and after some thought came up with some things I want to do with myself this year that I can actually accomplish. So here we go...

    1. Lose at least 20lbs - There's a gym down the road from me, so I've no excuse. Ideally I'd like it lost by Spring. Actually, for a number of reasons, it is very important that I lose this weight by Spring.

    2. Run a 5K marathon - I like running and I want to do more.

    3. Take on more freelance work - Photography, social media, and publicity. More money. ALSO want to get a paid beer writing gig. A column would be fucking amazing.

    4. Get a place of my own. Or at least get closer to that outcome. - Saved up a lot in 2013. By this year I should have at least a base to last me a year. Though I need more stable work to take it on and still have some kind of a savings.

    5. Cook more vegetarian/vegan meals. - Still a meat eater, but want to learn to make more veggie stuff. And finally would like to perfect my veggie burger recipe.

    6. Do more Thirsty Wench stuff. - Have an event I want to put together, but also want to write more reviews and lessons. Hope to be more informative.

    7. Work on trust issues and depression - Therapist isn't possible at this time, but setting up plans to deal with attacks and resolving some issues is something that is available to me.

    8. Be a better friend. - Friends, they are important to me. I want to be a better one.

    9. Take better care of my appearance. - As anyone here who is freelance or works from home can attest, since there's not much going out there's more of a risk to not be the greatest appearance-wise. More fancy baths, regular skin care, and ideally clothes shopping. I think also when I lose the weight I'll be buying some actual lingerie.

    10. Finish my pulpy ultra-violent novella. Just for fun.
  1.  (11236.3)
    Ok, so "more sex, less sad" is nice and succinct, but how about I deconstruct that...

    1. Be more socially brave - I did a little with this last year, but I still have a long way to go before I'm at the place I want to be. I'm not sure how to do this, but I guess I'll start by joining a school club or two, and trying to be the person who suggests events with friends, instead of waiting for them to do so.

    2. Ask people out - Obvious, right? I'll try to be the one who asks people out instead of waiting to be asked out.

    3. Get back into yoga - Flexibility, a greater sense of calm, and full-body strength should help both my major goals.

    3. Less procrastinating - Procrastination is a major source of unhappiness for me. It means I spend my free time fretting and doing useless bullshit instead of finishing school projects in a timely manner so I can pursue my own work and see my friends.

    4. Prioritize happiness - This phrase sounds terribly self-help to me, but I can't think of another way to say that when I have a choice between writing a B paper and also also having fun, or writing an A paper, then eating and/or sleeping alone, I should choose the former.

    @oldhat - I totally sympathize with #9. I work around cream cheese and coffee, or art supplies, every day. It's hard to find reasons to look my best when I'm worried about ruining the nice clothes.
    • CommentTimeJan 2nd 2014
    1. Three cheers for us losing 20 lbs! I'm aiming for 30 by the halfway mark. My starting is 230 (at 5'3"). I've started 'clean eating' already. And I have been a member of the gym down the street for about 6 months and have been TWICE. No more excuses. Which leads to...
    2. Learn to live with my depression. If I can't beat it, join it. It's stopped me from doing a lot of things I love- the act of STARTING things fills me with dread, but when I get into it, I'm able to enjoy it. So I've got to get this dark shadow under control.
    3. Drink a fuck-tonne more water. How many cups of water am I at right now? One. Two if I remember by day's end. I severely need to remedy this. Any suggestions on how I can get thirsty?
    4. Learn to be a voice actor (help me out, @razr?) and submit a reel. I guess learn to project my voice, too, since that's the hardest part for me.
    5. Do the dumb things I wanted to have done before the new year started (I mean really dumb things: shave my legs, put away the laundry, write to penpals, catch up on Saga, and clean the living room).

    @oldhat - #9- oh god, I fear to think of how long it's been since I brushed my hair. Maybe I will try makeup this year.
  2.  (11236.5)
    1. Be smarter about money.

    I am on a fixed income. It's not a lot of money at all, but I've got to find ways to make it last and cover my necessities better.

    2. Make money.

    Figure out how to generate some small income within my limitations. Pet sitting? Writing? Figure it out.

    3. Focus my notions in to tangible projects with progress.

    Art. Writing. Photography. Do it.

    4. Work on confidence and independence.

    I had a really bad decade from my mid 20's to my mid 30's. I didn't used to be so nervous. I used to be a big ball of energy, and probably too much of spaz, but that energy used to be gloriously unselfconscious and bold, not the frantic nervousness that bleeds out of me as an adult. Its largely linked to my feeling nervous about my security in life, so... if I work on the money and the art, it'll help the confidence. Aside from that, I still need to work on my confidence at just.... existing.

    5. Eat strategically.

    Research what my body needs, what foods have those needs, and eat them. Eat cleaner.

    6. Make more effort to have friends.

    There's people that I like that I should try and hang out with. Somehow. Also, distant cousins.

    7. Get rid of the piles.

    I've got the pile of clothes to mend, the pile of T-shirts to alter, the pile of things to scan in, the photographs to organize. Get rid of it. Get it done.

    8. Get my stuff from my Dad's attic.

    I've been putting this off for years. I don't want to visit that house. Do I get a ride from my friend with the car, a black gansta fellow; and bring the boyfriend, a black tattooed metalhead with Tourette's? Oh man.

    9. Stretch. Often.

    Just, play music and get up every hour or so and do some silly dancey stretches. Move!

    10. Take better care of my appearance.

    Oh, TOTALLY. I have to try and convince myself that getting dressed is more than just future laundry to wash.
      CommentAuthorAlan Tyson
    • CommentTimeJan 2nd 2014 edited
    I actually just have one Resolution that I want to devote myself to, and that is to be less angry about things. To not indulge in the easy righteous anger and disappointment in the world in general, to try and find reasons to be happy rather than just go the easy route and be pissed off.

    I don't have anger management problems or anything (at least, no one's ever told me that I do) but I figure it can't hurt to learn to smile a little more. Not to ignore the things that bother me, but not to let them grind me down to an angry red nerve, either.

    And, you know. Maybe lose 20 pounds. All the cool kids are doing it.
    • CommentTimeJan 3rd 2014
    So I've been looking over everything I tried to do last year and have been looking towards this year and right now I think I'm just... not sure who I want to be.

    I have always been a person who spins a lot of plates and has fingers in so many pies (yes, both at the same time) and the problem is that that doesn't really make me become any sort of person. Like, does anyone have a definitive idea of who I am and what I do? I'd really like to focus on that and I'd really not like to end out 2014 with it being "someone who does everything part time". Because that just feels like it's all half arsed and that I'm basically making a living on hobbies.

    I'm turning 30 this year and it's time to scrape together something definitive, y'know?

    So on top of the whole "pull yourself together and write out a business plan for the year" it'd probably just be to exercise & eat better. I've been sicker than I ever have been in my life and it seems like I'm just catching one head cold after another each month. I'm sure a lot of it has to do with never leaving the house, never exercising, and eating unbalanced meals. So I'd like to get that under control & build a routine where I'm treating myself better.

    I'd also like to try to work on my anxiety issues this year. Make sure that I address them before they get out of hand and all that.

    I could probably plan a bit better if I wasn't laid up with yet another cold. I should probably go about utilizing that fancy new health insurance this country had me buy or something. Yargh.
  3.  (11236.8)
    This will be a year of physical and mental wellbeing for me. I had a good start last year, but now that I've managed to empty my plate there's actual energy to go back to proper training mode.

    1) Get the weight down to 72kg, where I got a good start but an equally good rebound last year. Preferably by June. I'm starting from 81.5kg as of yesterday.
    2) I can currently climb four out of five 5C routes on boulder with confidence. By the end of the year I want that to apply for 6A.

    When these are being handled, the following are bonuses:

    3) Publish one IF game for either Spring Thing or IFcomp.
    4) Publish at least one short story.
    5) Start on the second novel.
  4.  (11236.9)
    I'm actually going to do this, I haven't really tried in previous years!

    1) More friends round for meals/nights in - this is something me and my wife agreed on, a lot of our friends are having kids now, and we want to support them like they were there for us when we had ours. (I was 18 when our son was born, so it was a bit if a shock!(

    2) Loose weight, get fit - I can't do too much running, due to my bad knees, but cycling seems to work, as does swimming....

    3) Write book - I've actually started this one last year, so it should be 'finish writing book'

    4)Proper podcasts - I've done podcasts on and off for my site, but I want to do them properly now, and regually!

    5) Start building up to setting up on my own. This is a long process, I'm a safety consultant, and have always wanted to start getting on my own way. This is the year to start getting things together - talking to accountants etc. This is a long term goal which needs to be started....!
  5.  (11236.10)
    Small list:

    1) Do more of my own painting no matter how tired I am from "the day job".

    2) Since the galleries in L.A. have shown no interest in my work and probably won't, find other venues to sell/show my work (restaurants, coffee shops, etc.)

    and related to that:

    2b) Try to do more art that isn't angry/confrontational so it can be hung in a public place (I'm angry and confrontational enough as a human being, maybe I should hold some of that back in the paintings).

    3) Try to lose 5 pounds (but I'm already clocking in 8 hours a week at the gym. Unless I give up gluten I doubt that's going to happen).
  6.  (11236.11)
    I don't like setting myself too many targets but the main one this year is to do some German each day, using Duolingo and the Deutsche Welle online courses. I've been going to Munich for seven years (Had a flat there for 4 years, going out maybe five times a year) and while I can get by day to day my conversational is still woeful.
    • CommentTimeJan 3rd 2014
    Last year turned out to be a bit of a wash, with a few really tremendous highs and (unfortunately) a couple of reeeeaally LOW lows thrown in. I think the mistake was setting up high expectations, which is not such a hot idea if you've a tendency for depression. So yeah, that didn't go all that well. (I think there's also the risk of ambition turning me into a douchenozzle, which I've seen happen to a couple of other people. Don't wanna go that route, thanks very much.)

    So for this year:

    1. Get my head straight. Keep cool, be honest, be open. This may well include getting back on the meds, but at least last time around they worked very nicely for me, lucky lucky.

    That's pretty much the main point, the rest are addendums and things helping towards that goal.

    2. Finances. Get a job with an actual paycheck of some sort, this hand-to-mouth schtick is getting real old.

    3. Luthiery. Keep working on building/constructing/designing instruments. Woodworking makes me happy, I should do more.

    4. Music. Make that shit.

    5. Butts. Being single is a drag. Maybe try to do something about that, although that kinda hinges on points 1 & 2.

    And, finally:

    6. Be more active here, not just reading what you guys are up to.

    (@razr: Thanks for this thread, and for last year's. This is the sort of awesome stuff WC is legendary for. Massive kudos.)
    • CommentTimeJan 3rd 2014
    @glukkake, I've been feeling the exact same way. I'm also turning 30 this year and I can't really say with any certainty what it is I actually do for a living. It's always been a little of this and a little of that. Definitely going to try and get more of a focus this year.

    @everyone, glad to know that I'm not the only one who stays in their PJs all day.
    • CommentTimeJan 3rd 2014
    @Steve - Pick up German comic books. It's a fun way to learn. I learned a lot of conversational/colloquial French by reading comics (though keep up with your method of speaking the language - my spoken French is shite since I have no practice).
  7.  (11236.15)
    @diello That's a great idea, thank-you!
    • CommentTimeJan 3rd 2014
    I am not only glad that people are willing to throw in and try to take this shit for serious - but yes on helping each other out! Sometimes we head on roads other people have traveled, why not take a look at their maps??

    Oy vey you kids turning 30 and feeling like life is ending... I want my early 30s back so bad it hurts. But I do feel a little less like a total loser that I'm not the only who sometimes doesn't get around to dressing...or showering. I figure if my goals work out then this will take care of itself. But if not then it's something for 2015... (I would like to figure out how to do all the moisturizing girly someday, though.)

    @diello email is for any specific questions. I don't know a thing about you so I can't begin to guess at what would help most right now. Also, I am a rank beginner, but I know a lot of good teachers and resources.
  8.  (11236.17)
    For probably the last decade I've been a smartarse and said that the only new year's resolution I've ever kept was to never make another new year's resolution. This year I've decided to man up and actually attempt some improvements in my life as actual, formal resolutions that can be assessed.

    1: I will weigh less on December 31st 2014 than I did on January 1st 2014.

    2: I will go on at least one date with a real female person of the opposite gender.

    They're small goals, but they're a start.
    • CommentTimeJan 3rd 2014
    @razr it's not so much that I feel like life is ending so much as it's time for it to really begin.
    • CommentTimeJan 3rd 2014
    @glukk - Do it. }:> You've been doing it though, just, you know, do it more. Harder. With a ball-peen hammer.
  9.  (11236.20)
    1) Last year I went from 82kg to 77ish in the first half of the year, and made it back up to 82 for new year. 2014 plan is to do (a) but not (b). (Just to join in with all the weight related resolutions)
    2) I'm going to do a personal project. Not some poxy "pretend I'm not taking work home with me by doing it in personal time before it's needed" personal project, but a real actual one.

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