I don’t really pay much attention to this New Year’s Resolution stuff anymore. Well, except that I recognize that OTHER people making resolutions makes January a great time to sell that exercise equipment I bought a few years ago when I was still making resolutions! (Mental note – post ad to sell elliptical trainer)
One thing I really want to do, however, is write a blog. I stumble onto blog post ideas on a regular basis so I have notes and little slips of paper stuck in books and drawers and cupboards all over my office and my bedroom and electronic notes on my desktop, my laptop and my tablet. I have enough ideas to post blogs for a long time to come. Problem is, I just never seem to be able to find the time to actually write the damn things. I have people who follow my website as well as my Twitter account and I have friends and business associates on Facebook and Linked In. Every time I am notified of a new friend or follower or associate, I feel this pang of guilt for having all these interesting thoughts and not sharing them. So, in order to assuage my guilt, I am committing to posting FOUR BLOG ARTICLES THIS YEAR. I am NOT calling this a new year’s resolution. This is an annual goal. It is simply a coincidence that it happens to be being set at the beginning of a new year. Not a new year’s resolution so I shall have no problem achieving this goal, right? I should give myself some kind of reward when I get to the fourth posting. I have some time to think about what that will be. Suggestions welcome!
So, this is number one. I’m getting to be of an age where I’m being invited to more funerals than weddings. So, I’m reading and/or listening to obituaries a lot. Which got me to wondering about what my obituary would say. What would I want it to say? What things are important to a person when they reach the end of their life, when their time to do and be and accomplish is over? What do I want to overhear my friends and family and business associates saying about me after I’m gone? (Cause you know I plan to be that fly on the wall listening in!) As a performer, I am used to reading reviews of my work. It’s nice when they’re flattering and can sting when they aren’t but, at the end of the day, they are just opinions. Maybe we can learn from them and our work can improve, maybe we just need to ignore them and move on. Your eulogy is like the review of your life. And there are no do overs – no improving with practice. Some people believe in reincarnation but my understanding of reincarnation is that we don’t generally recall our past lives so, even if I am reincarnated as that fly on the wall, I’m not going to be able to learn from my past experiences. I need to do my learning this time around. So, here’s an exercise. Write your dream eulogy. What would be said about you? What would your significant other say? Your parents, siblings, children, grandchildren? Your friends, your neighbors, your business associates, the guy who runs the corner store, your boss, your staff? When you are done, compare what is said in your dream eulogy to what would be said about you by these same people were you to die tomorrow. Are you happy with what you have discovered? How close are the two? If there’s a gap, it needs your attention. Find out what you need to do to close the gap and start doing it. You can become the person you want to be. Sometimes the hardest part is figuring out what that is and how to get there. Hope this exercise helps!
In closing my first blog post of 2014, I want to share this new year’s wish that I read the other day. This is my wish for all of you.
May your coming year be filled with magic and dreams and good madness. I hope you read some fine books and kiss someone who thinks you’re wonderful, and don’t forget to make some art – write or draw or build or sing or live as only you can. And I hope, somewhere in the next year, you surprise yourself.
~ Neil Gaiman