Patrick Ward words, code, and music

January's Playhouse

This is the first year that I didn’t go around telling everyone that it was “going to be my year!” In fact, I made a special tweet to let everyone know that I didn’t have any resolutions for the new year.

Scoff! What chutzpah!

I’m sorry folks, I tried that for far too many seasons, and it never worked for me. I’m sure for some it’s a perfectly valid way to enter the optimism of a new year, but for this lost soul it’s been an utter failure.

Now, I do have a list of intentions, but I keep those to myself, hidden away in my well secured vault of lunacy. You know, where all my little impish faery demons go when they get bored trying to get my attention. Oh, they always come back, usually in the most inappropriate moments. Mostly, though, they stay down there, dreaming up fanciful ways to torture me about my life and the future.

It’s quite a trick for me to rummage through the vault, picking out a fresh intention to let loose on the world without disturbing the lunatics. Nevertheless, I do enjoy the challenge. It’s always a pleasant surprise to find a piece of intention I’d forgotten about, something that can set me on a tear for the next few months.

Now, you may be asking yourself, how does this nut-job get anything done if he’s always ferreting about in his dusty playhouse full of dreams? I mean, where’s the logic behind this process?

I didn’t say there wasn’t a process, or that there wasn’t a kind of insane organization to it all. I just said I’ve been keeping them down there in the vault with the rest of my Mad Hatter ideas.

There’s another list, you see, kept in the vault just above the playhouse vault, that I keep as the current list of intentions. I’ve learned not to limit my lists anymore. I mean, you never know when you’re going to need to pull out that idea about the acrobatic water rats, right?

So, I keep at least two lists. The first is like a theater of dreamscapes, disorganized and full of lunacy, but ripe for the imagination. The other is the one that keeps me tuned into some kind of forward progress. It’s the one that most people think of when creating their resolutions for the new year.

I don’t publish either one. It just doesn’t work for me anymore.

I do, however, let loose one or two on the unsuspecting public as I decide which intentions win the honor of “current focus”. This 30 posts in 30 days project is one such intention. Of course, this one happened to be a gift from a new friend I made at CGW, but it moved right on up to the top when I realized what a splendid idea it was.

I’m not so proud that I can’t move the order of the lists around a little. Sometimes it’s good to review them from a different angle. I’ll even mix them up like a deck of cards at times and spread them out for a fresh perspective.

One of the screwball ideas that popped to the surface at the end of last year was to list my accomplishments at the end of each month, rather than list my intentions in the beginning. I know it’s backwards, but I like it that way.

There’s nothing hubristic about it. It’s just a way for me to keep motivating myself, to show that inner critic that I am getting things done. How else am I going to clear out that crazy vault down there if I don’t start realizing there’s forward progress here people? I need to be reminded, every now and then, of how far I’ve come.

So, as I looked over what occurred in the first month of this year, I was quite astounded to find out that I was a pretty busy beaver in January! I’m quite proud of my accomplishments.

This is where the inner critic chimes in from stage left and says, “So what are you going to do for an encore in February Einstein?!?” Never mind him, he’s a bore anyway. Besides, it’s not a race between the months, it’s just a way to keep reminding the critic over there, that PROGRESS IS BEING MADE! Sorry about that folks.

As I was saying, January was a busy month. I think it was a wonderful start to the year, and only a precursor to what can be accomplished in the coming months.

I’m quite proud of this new beginning to 2010.

  • I started the www.patrickward.com blog. You’re reading it!
  • I posted 13 articles to the blog, with an average of 887 words each, the largest of which was 1796 words long.11 of these posts count towards my 30 posts in 30 days goal.
  • I attended the Steve Pavlina Conscious Growth Workshop in Las Vegas, NV. An event that jump started these 30 posts, new connections, and a new vision for the future.
  • I found a pet sitter to watch my dogs for six days, and then allowed it to happen. This required a lot of trust and courage on my part. It’s not something I was very comfortable with at all. In the end, it was worth it to break past those fears and realize I can take small trips without worrying about my little buddies at home.
  • I added over 40 new, conscious friends to my list of connections. This was huge for me! I was not a very social person before January, so to go out and meet this many people and retain them as connections online and elsewhere is truly a quantum leap for me.
  • I started laser treatments on my back, shoulders, and triceps. I know, it’s vain, but it’s something I’ve been wanting to do for awhile.
  • I finally followed through with my wisdom teeth extractions. I’ve been putting this off for years. Not all progress is fun, you know.
  • Not sure this counts, but I completed my 10th month on the vegan diet. Probably the most significant thing I’ve done for my health, for the animals, for my outlook on life, and for my spirituality. It has changed me in ways I can only describe by sharing those experiences in future posts.
  • On the book front I didn’t get through as many as I would have liked to this past month, but I was able to read The Plague Dogs (Richard Adams), Fragile Things (Neil Gaiman), and Crush It! (Gary Vaynerchuk). I also reread Personal Development for Smart People (Steve Pavlina). I started The Creative Habit (Twyla Tharp) and Immediate Fiction (Jerry Cleaver).
  • A late addition, but a worthy one, is that I actually started to post and participate in some of the social networks out there like Facebook, Twitter, and other online forums. I’ve never done that before, but I’m finding it’s a wonderful way to keep your momentum going. Especially, when you befriend a group of highly conscious and positive souls like I have this past month.
  • Of course, there are always accomplishments at work as well, but we’ll keep those separate.

Not a bad start to the year.