I can’t keep count of the amount i’ve had the privilege to learn, see, hear and experience this year but tonight I’m thinking about why this year worked. I was once part of the “Let’s Make Resolutions that Don’t Work” community, just making it the same way over and over again though it just doesn’t work out year after year, because you forget, because it’s too generic, because it’s unquantifiable, because of excuses.
Lesson 1: If you do things the same way, you get the same result. I suppose that only makes sense because how do you expect to get something different if you keep trying to approach it the same way? So 2013’s resolution worked because I did it differently from the other years, instead of asking myself “How am I going to be a better person this year?” I asked, “What am I going to do this year?” I came up with a list of 12 things (some created along the way): these were things I never had the courage to pursue because of excuses. Lousy excuses.
In January, my class embarked on a Sponsor a Child project with me and it was something I set down to do from a long time ago but never had the courage to do because I thought it was a silly idea that would receive no support. But this January, the support from my class brought me a long way to keeping the ‘FindCourage101 Resolution’ going.
Then I don’t remember many but along the way in April I found the courage to cut my hair short, which used to be impossible because people’s voices were sometimes louder than my own. And I learned to listen to myself more, and that tiny voice was saying “Even if it’ll turn out looking horrible, I want to see it for myself” Here below is me, with short hair, at worlds wearing ridiculous spon pants with my skinny jeans underneath because it was terribly cold and that made me comfortable. All the other voices were saying “Shermaine, you look ridiculous!” (or sometimes the it was “You look homeless!”) but there goes, at least I was comfortable.
And I learned to cope with ever changing relationships and people, I found the courage to face that reality so this year I talked less about people, whined less about relationships. Well I still do once in a while, but it’s definitely less. And I’ve learned to give more love to those who love me back. This year I thanked people more, I gave them more credit, and that takes courage because devoting yourself in a relationship you trust means making yourself more vulnerable. But I did, I think after all, this year, I loved more.
And let’s talk about the things I never thought I could do! From managing costumes in the team to becoming a senior in the DnT, any OMer from my Division 2 days would know it’s something that sounded beyond impossible. In Division 2 my team’s almost-mantra was ‘never leave Shermaine in the DnT’ and later I was the well known saikang warrior. But now DnT is my favourite place and doing costumes was the best decision I’ve made.
So I guess the pleasant surprises I’ve gotten this year from discovering my newfound love for the people I’ve crossed paths with and the things I’ve challenged myself to do has taught me to look at obstacles in a very different light- you know, maybe they’re just there to show you something and you wouldn’t know if you don’t give it a shot.
Running 10km marathons has also shown me the magic of exercise, the kind of discipline and determination it teaches you and the satisfaction you get from nothing else but running a personal best for example. Running 5 10km marathons this year was a byproduct of challenging myself to run them as part of my “FindCourage101” Resolution.
And finally thanks to my new approach to the whole resolution yadayada, I have learned to explore more; learned to praise more than criticise, to believe more than doubt, find courage more than excuses.