a year in inventory

I try to throw together a rough inventory of the year that was, so that I can think about how I focus the year to come. And, yes I know that this post in late for the New Year’s nonsense, but I’m busy and I gotta do what I gotta do.

Anyway, I wanted to put down (at least some) of the things that I’ve inventoried and I also wanted to share my goals for the coming year. But first, I would like to define what this process actually means.

The truth is that the years do move faster the older you become. I’ve noticed this as I inch toward 30 and it’s kind of scary. I don’t know how/why it happens this way, but you end up becoming busy and days become weeks that become months that become years and suddenly it is ridiculous how much time you’ve spent and barely realized it. The inventory allows me to see that in the time (even if it went crazy quick) there were things that I did to make use of it. It provides purpose to the madness, I guess.

Also, I am a person who needs quantifiable measures to show success. Lists and things like lists help me to understand that I have completed something. The year-end list is a big indicator of how I have spent my time. And I need that to affirm that I am moving forward in positive, productive ways. So, this exercise is as much mental health as it is pausing to understand the time that has passed.

I won’t bore you further. Here’s the inventory of 2019 (basically just a list of things that happened/things I did).

  1. Graduated from graduate school AKA became a Master
  2. Moved to Boston, MA with my partner
  3. Secured employment in Boston (also held two jobs at once for awhile)
  4. Wrote around 10 short stories, started writing a novel, and got one story published
  5. Interviewed one of my favorite authors and had the article published
  6. Mastered (kinda) public transportation
  7. Read well over 20 different books
  8. Traveled to South Carolina and Georgia for the first time ever
  9. Continued a fitness regime that started 3(?) years ago
  10. Ran a 5k in the cold and had a relatively decent time
  11. Cheered my partner through a half marathon (also in the cold)
  12. At the time of writing, I’m about halfway through an scholarly edited collection

This list isn’t comprehensive and it doesn’t chart everything. 2019 was a turbulent year for a number of reasons. I cried a lot and I neared a total emotional breakdown during my job search. I was scared often and I faced rejection. My partner and I left everything behind to chase a new/different life. We’ve yet to find out if it was the right decision. But I still stand by our choice. She does too.

So, that leaves 2020. Here’s another list. Again, not comprehensive.

  1. Continue writing nearly everyday and try to publish more frequently
  2. Try to listen to more diverse music and develop new musical tastes
  3. Try to get out more and challenge my natural inclination to introversion
  4. Move to an apartment with an in-unit washer/dryer
  5. Try to be more active within my local community
  6. Read more diverse authors (I read a lot of white dudes)
  7. Travel somewhere new (if possible)

As you can see, there are a lot of indefinite phrases here. I’m trying or doing something if possible and that’s for a good reason. I have no idea what this next year will bring. At times, it will be turbulent and I want to give myself room to not meet all my goals. Some of these are set in my mind. Writing and maintaining the blog are challenging and fun and get me to be creative. I think that stuff will naturally follow. But the others may be more difficult, which is a good thing. I need to be growing and changing and pushing myself into different directions.

But that’s what I have. New Year’s bring cheesy cliches. But I also think they do bring in an opportunity for self-reflection.


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