Category Archives: perspective

Goals for 2012


I shouldn’t say that everyone makes a New Year’s resolution.  In fact, I think that the majority of people that make resolutions either want to a) lose weight or b) stop smoking.  Well, as it is, I have already quit smoking several years ago, so I guess I fall into the former category.  But instead of making specific resolutions, I am going to make lifestyle changes with specific achievements that aren’t necessarily goals, but if I achieve them it will be a signpost, if you will, that I am achieving the things that I want to do.

1) Goal: Get back in shape.  Lose weight, trim down, lower blood pressure.  These are all reasons that I would like to get into shape.  The last couple of years I have had halfway legitimate excuses for not exercising (recovering from three separate surgeries, after all.)  I still should have eaten better than I did.  So eating less, less junk fast food, regular exercise will be on the list. 

Signpost: Ride in the BikeMS Pedal the Plains.  I was excited to participate last year, but back pain sidelined me from training, and back surgery ultimately kept me on the sidelines.  If I do finish, I am contemplating getting a zipper tattoo on my scar to remind me of both last years disappointment and this years achievement.

2) Goal: Be mentally healthier.  The day to day moments of the last couple of years have really kept me down, despite those momentous moments that would otherwise have put me in great spirits.  Lifestyle changes will help, along with staying up to date on my medications and exercise. 

Signpost: Getting a job that I really enjoy.  Going for more money might not even be particularly important at this point.  I need to do something that doesnt add exponentially to my stress.

3) Goal: Read.  As I have stated before, the last half of last year, I started reading again.  My goal for my 35th year was to read 50 books.  The count now stands at 23, with most of those being back loaded at the end of the year.  I amended that to say that I was going to read 10 classics.  I still may be able to hit both goals.

Signpost: War and Peace.  It is in hand, and it will be conquered.  I am looking forward to finishing but not for the satisfaction of finishing itself, but for the satisfaction of a well told, incredible story.

4) Goal: Write.  Reestablishing this blog has been a good step.  Writing is an outlet, no matter if it is the truth or fiction.

Remington Typewriter

Image via Wikipedia


Signpost: Having a rough draft of a novel done.

Well, that’s it for me.  How about you?


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Changing Perspective?

Whenever you are troubled, struggling, or uninspired by something, have you ever had somebody tell you this: “You just need to change your perspective”?  It seems to me that little piece of advice can be simultaneously insightful and frustrating.

I start to think about all that is wrong with the world.  All those struggling in Japan with the aftermath of the earthquake and tsunami.  Rebels fighting for freedom in north Africa and the middle east.  Poverty and preventable disease around the world that I will never know.  When I think about what I have to be happy about, there is so much.  My home and my livelihood is safe.  I enjoy liberties that others can only imagine.  When I feel broke I look at our two cars in the garage, our cell phones, our televisions, our computer.  We have food safe to eat, water safe to drink, and access to good health care. 

But depression is a selfish disease.  It tricks you into not giving a damn about any of that.  Instead you focus on yourself.  What happens if I get water in my basement from all the melting snow that is headed our way?  Why does our government insist on stepping on our toes?  Why do we always seem to have problems with my car?  Can’t we spend less money?  Why can’t I find anything in the fridge that I want to eat for lunch?  Is this new health care bill going to actually make things better, or worse?

Depression says, “Go out tonight.  Look at the stars.  They are the same no matter how you look at them.  Lay down.  Stand on your head.  Take a drive to the country.  Go to Mom and Dad’s house.  Still look the same, don’t they?  ‘Change your perspective.’ What a bunch of bunk.”  He can be pretty persuasive, that depression.  What a jerk.

Then I remember the time that I was fortunate enough to be able to visit Australia.  Sitting out on a cool night in the outback looking up at the stars.  There it was.  Not the largest or most impressive constellation in the sky.  However, being from the Northern Hemisphere, I had never seen it before.  The Southern Cross.  I stared in awe, humbled by the experience and the beauty of its simplicity.  For some reason that I will never understand, it made me feel both insignificant and important at the same time.  I could understand why songs had been written about it.

So on those days that depression is tricking me into believing that I can’t change my perspective, I will just trick him back.  I will change what I am looking at altogether.  Maybe I will take in that new view for a day.  Or a week.  Or the rest of my life.  What will you have to say then, depression?

THURSDAY FUN: Epic Cardinal Photo Quest Update

No, there are no pictures to show off yet.  But this morning was so fun!  The other day I bought a feeder and some cardinal blend to see what I could do to attract my friends.  Yesterday I walked by the window on several occasions.  No sightings.  This morning, Little Guy was eating breakfast at the kitchen table and glanced out onto our deck.

“Daddy, a bird!”

“What’s he look like?” I said.  I was in the other room.

“He’s a bird.”  I would have to go about this from another angle.

“What color is he?”

“He’s red. He’s really really red!”

I went to the window and saw him, sitting nonchalantly on our deck.  Of course the camera was in the man cave.  I dashed downstairs to grab it, but by the time I got back–well I think you know.  But it was certainly the closest sighting I have seen.  Getting closer.  Stay tuned.

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Filed under depression, perspective