Posted by: malstott | January 3, 2013

I Resolve

Picture of Earth from Voyager 1 Spacecraft



There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we’ve ever known.   Carl Sagan



The world did not end on December 21st. Christmas came and went with all of its joy and stress. We did not fall off of the fiscal cliff. Our children are still being sent to fight in Afghanistan. Frightful violence continues even in our schools and neighborhoods. The San Francisco 49ers have lost much of their momentum heading into the playoffs. While there are plenty of challenges remaining with the global economy there is evidence of growth and recovery.  The future is a mixed bag of big and little joys and sorrows, blessings and curses. Whether or not we are ready for it, HERE COMES 2013.

Does it matter one bit what I resolve to do in 2013? Like Carl Sagan, I look at the world in perspective and take away two ideas. One is that I should be humble and not take myself or my opinions too seriously. As it says in Psalms, “Man is like a breath, his days are like a passing shadow.” The second take-away is that I have a responsibility to both my fellow-man and to the earth on which I live.  So, below are 6 things I resolve to work on this year. These resolutions are both simple and impossible. My success with them is not easily measured. Success will manifest in other more eternal ways. But I will feel it if progress is made. It will matter to me.

  1. Impact others –  I resolve to spend more of my time and resources helping out. This can be formal or informal but I will shift my focus further from my center of gravity.
  2. Live in the present – Life passes quickly. There is little value in worry though I’ve honed the art. I resolve to focus more on today and less on what I can’t control. I also resolve to open my eyes to the apparent joy around me.
  3. Cut myself some slack – I’m ok. I’ve done some cool stuff. I screw up sometimes. All of that makes up me. I resolve to pat myself on the back every once in a while keeping the humility theme in mind.
  4. Risk more – Why wouldn’t I? I am but a speck on a speck for a brief moment. I give myself permission to risk more as long as I’m not impacting others negatively.
  5. Lessen the footprint I leave on this earth – I will take less into my space. When I don’t need it anymore I will recycle it or give it away. I will consolidate driving trips and will walk more often. Not a huge dent will be made but it is my part.
  6. Celebrate Love – From Les Misérables, “To love another person is to see the face of God.” When I’m irritated with those I love I resolve to remember this, to slow down and to thank God.

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