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2009: What Will You Do?

New Years’ Eve always fills me with optimism: the chance to look back and pick apart the year and decide where to focus next. The tradition of New Years’ resolutions certainly isn’t new, but I try to treat each New Year as a totally blank slate, cut off from past events and energies. Doing so has two advantages: one, that you define exactly what you want first, and allow that vision to sustain itself (and change, if necessary) through the events of the year. The second advantage is that it immediately places control in your hands, rather than in the vagaries of time. You’re entirely responsible for what happens.

This year seems particularly conducive to optimism: with the election of Obama, the global economic avalanche, and (on a more personal note) my graduation from college, the future is anything but certain. With all that ambiguity comes a special kind of potential: anything can happen now. I’ve also had a special feeling about the year 2009 for as long as I can remember, so I hope that intuition holds true.

I discovered a fantastic annual review exercise on Chris Guillebeau’s site, The Art of Nonconformity and have been hard at work elaborating exactly what I want to get out of 2009. I encourage you to do the same! Here are a few areas where I will be working particularly hard, as well as an area I’ve chosen to take a break on this year.

Areas to Focus On

Health

Vision – my computer-induced nearsightedness has bothered me to no end, and since my new puppy chewed up a very expensive pair of glasses, I’m electing to forego buying a new pair and instead use natural vision improvement exercises (which have worked wonders in the past for me, but I have not had the discipline to follow through on). I will practice these techniques every day for a minimum of 45 days to evaluate if they will help my eyesight.

Mind – after spending nearly a year conducting research for my upcoming senior project, The Anatomy of Awareness (more on that later!), I have learned a great deal about neuroscience and brain chemistry. With that knowledge comes the awareness of just how many things in my own brain are not working correctly: my focus, concentration, energy levels and motivation are seriously fucked. This year, I will conduct exhaustive trials of supplements and prescriptions to find what works best for me in these areas. I’m currently waiting on a shipment of piracetam, a “cognitive enhancer” proven beneficial in Alzheimer’s patients and in connecting the left and right brain hemispheres. I’ll post some information on that in the near future.

Diet and Exercise – I have occasionally been in great shape, so I know it’s not only possible, but relatively simple given the right motivation. This year I am going to try eating much fewer carbs. I am interested in learning more about Ayurvedic (Indian) dietary practices, especially since an Ayurvedic herb (Tulsi) just rescued me from a very serious cold.

Work and Finances

Career – I have had a rocky road of internships and part-time work during my college’s Fieldwork Term, but my experiences have been largely positive. I’ll soon begin working at my former high school and hope to turn this into a full-time position or find other work that is similarly rewarding and fulfilling to my purpose as a human being. Since I am leaving college this year as well, I have plenty of ideas of where I want to go and will need some time to whittle my options down!

I’ve also just completed 90% of the paperwork for launching Evolation as a small business (from now on known as Evolation Media, LLC) and I am excited about the prospects. I am still examining ways I can use the medium and content of this site to help others. I will be adding some slight redesigns to the site in order to better prepare it for the direction I have planned for it.

Organization

I am making an intense transition towards being more organized and aware of the myriad details of my life. I have practiced David Allen’s “Getting Things Done” method before, and found it fantastic, but have not had the time or incentive to put it into full-time use. 2009 is that time. I will be documenting how I use his and other organizational systems, as well as offering tips on what’s helped me stay on top of all this!

Areas to Leave Alone

Spirituality – I have spent altogether too much time in this realm recently, and though I feel intensely connected, grateful, and conscious in my daily life, I have lost a fair amount of personal power because I have never really worked at being effective in the real world. Since I know I will be a spiritual person regardless of what I do, and that this is an innate and inseperable part of who I am, I will try to leave it on the back burner and focus more on interpersonal, entrepreneurial and physical work in the real world. In Steve Pavlina’s terminology, I am moving away from a fixation on Oneness (the combination of Truth and Love) and towards a focus on Courage (the combination of Love and Power).

I’ll be documenting all these trials over the coming months, so there will be much more info to follow soon. Have a happy 2009!

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