For the first time in my life I am up in the air on the last day of the year, I certainly hope there will be many more, and so it is not without irony (for a founding member of the D&C no less), that I really hate flying. I’m sure there’s a metaphor or a fake Chinese cookie message in there somewhere, but I’m at a loss to interpret it. My spidey senses are a bit dullish this morning, 3 AM wake-up, Bloody Mary in the airport lounge and all that, plus the aforementioned “dislike” for aerial travel, which if you knew more of my background would bump the irony up to eleven. The complete Diving and Chillin’ clan is headed to Cozumel, meaning the island of the swallows in the Mayan language. Expected activities? Please cue the evident punch line: diving and chilling. For the first time kids, the second generation of the club, are joining us. Time moving on and all that.
A weird year is coming to a close. Some ups, some downs, some lethargy, some wake-up calls. I like to think 2017 will start with a clean slate and on the right foot, or fin. Certainly it will start with a couple of dives which feels auspicious, there’s something to being IN the ocean and seeing the myriad of creatures that live there to drive home the point that we are really just a part of a much, much larger and quite mysterious whole.
Year’s end always makes me quite retro/introspective, and it usually brings a trite convoy of vague resolutions. This year, however, is a bit different. I have thought out my resolutions with more care. They are precise, measurable, achievable, not just “to be a better human being”, ’cause that one was not really a smashing success, and I have a clue as to why (apart from whatever character faults are my own that is). In resolutions, as in everything else, there’s a saying (which came to me years ago in the context of weightlifting) “If you fail to plan, you plan to fail”. Thus, so it is with “being a better human”, it is less of a resolution/plan and more mere wishful thinking, something shouted at the Universe that doesn’t even have an echo. So this year I added a subsection to my introspection: how am I going to achieve that? I came up with separate components that make up what I consider to be a better version of me, metrics you could call them, fours aspects/actions I need to work on daily with milestones and goals. It almost feels like one of my old project management jobs. As such things are interesting only to the person concerned, I won’t bore you with the details, but I pass on the question for you to ponder, what will you do, concretely, to make yourself a better/happier person this year? In the case where your soul searching leads you to the conclusion that all is perfect, I salute you, perhaps you should consider launching a life coach business, and please give me your number.
For this new year about to start, I wish on your behalf that one of your dreams may come true. Your end of the bargain is that you need to figure out how to make it happen. Specifics are your friend when it comes to life changes, which reminds me of a truism sometimes attributed to Aristotle (I can’t help myself): “If you want your life to change, you need to change something in your life.” It’s self-evident, but how many people do you know that will say out loud they desire some sort of improvement in their lives, but continue to stick to their routine without modifying anything? Find what needs to be tweaked, modified or left by the wayside and act on it. Most of you will know this saying from scuba diving: “Plan the dive, dive the plan”, it applies to our lives above the water as well.
So cheers from 34 000 feet, somewhere above the clouds of the southern USA, may you and yours have a very, very happy, healthy and positively decisive new year, and may old acquaintances never be forgotten. Unless they keep you from making the changes you need that is.
Here’s to de-icing our wings in 2017 and broadening our horizons.