Into 2014.

Well, 2014 gave me a rude awakening with my dog’s passing away but I just have to keep rolling with the punches.  Like last year, I’m going to try to have some resolutions that I can complete.  But first, let’s look at 2013’s resolutions:

1) Continue studying Japanese and increase the intensity: Well, that failed.  Well, sort of.  I was going at it pretty well until my tutor moved, thus concluding our lessons.  Self-studying is stupidly hard to do and I lost the drive from August onward.  I hit a long slump but I have started to look over stuff again.  If I want to even try to attempt the N2 Japanese Language Proficiency Test, I have to start studying my butt off as soon as I get back.  Let’s hope we can get that done.

2) Travel more: I destroyed this resolution.  I have gone on several solo trips since and am not afraid to do it again.

3) Write more: I finally finished my second novel, started heavily revising my first one and sort of started writing up a follow up novel to the second one.  So yeah, I think I did okay here despite not doing NaNoWriMo!

4) Work on photography: I did okay here.  I didn’t really look into working on my photography but I’ve been experimenting on my own.  I’ve been taking a ton of pictures so I think I did alright.

5) Expand my cooking repertoire: FAILURE.  I’m a lazy bum.

6) Put more effort into my teaching: Seeing that I am in complete control of everything in my Friday school, I had no choice but to put more effort into my lessons.  At least one day out of the week I am just putting all a day’s work into making materials, worksheets and brainstorming for a perfect class.  That has spread at my other schools too so let’s consider that a pass!

I think I had too many resolutions last year so let’s see if we can focus and complete all of mine this year.

1) Continue studying Japanese…again!: I mostly goofed this up last year so I want to make it up this year.  Forgetting everything I have learned so far would be a waste.

2) Read more: I have been slacking off in reading.  I only just started again but before that I hadn’t read anything since fall of 2012.  Yeah, it’s been bad.  Once I heard my nieces have been reading like crazy, I started to read again.  I want to at least finish 10 books this year.  Plus once I start reading, it’ll make my writing better! Well…hopefully.  Which leads me to my third resolution…

3) Share your works: I’ve always been hesitant in showing people my works.  Awhile back I started showing people my short stories which has resulted in good feedback.  My novel rough drafts though?  I still shudder at the thought of showing such a huge piece of work to someone to see what they think about it.  But, if I don’t do it, I’ll never be able to publish it.  Showing people what I write is also the end goal for writing these books so it is sort of silly to not show anybody it, even if it isn’t the final version.  If people won’t see it, then it’ll never improve.  Since I’m comfortable with one novel looking “presentable”, I really should just give it to people who want to read it.  It may be more on the personal level but, I just need to take the dive and do it.  Honestly this is the easiest resolution because all it will take is a few clicks on the computer.  Soon I’m going to dump my first draft of my second novel for anyone to read.

4) Take more chances:  I’m a cautious person by nature.  I used to be more of a risk taker but I think I had been burned so many times from it that I sort of slunk back and made safe decisions. But if one simply does that their entire life, they will get nowhere.  I look back at my adolescence and realize the more eventful parts of my life have involved taking huge risks.  While I don’t have to go crazy, I definitely need to get out of my comfort zone again like I used to.  I can’t beat myself too much over it though, I did move to another country a few years ago.  But I won’t be here forever.  Time is slowly running out and I want to make the most of it before I take off.

2013 overall was a good year.  Let’s hope 2014 will be an even better one.

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