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Happy New Year!

December 2011
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A Happy New Year to all.

The New Year is upon us and this day, as is American Tradition, requires of us a new resolution to improve on what we’ve managed to do with our lives so far.  Though clichéd, I’ve always come up with one or two in hopes of bettering myself.  Last year was a banner year though I really don’t remember what my resolutions were.  To be truthful, I started out 2011 without much direction and the first five months showed that.  My recovery was better than what I believed it should be, my relationship with God needed cultivation but was fair, my relationship with my wife needed a little tending to, as did my kids, business was “fair to Midland” and my workout routine was alright, if a little average…  Now this is looking back.  I’ve made so many strides (though probably not in the ideal order if I looked at it from a bean counter’s perspective) in the last seven months that it’s really skewed my perception.  I’ve gotten a lot more done that I’d hoped I would, at least from January 1st, 2011.

With that being said, this year is going to be interesting. I’ve got four that come to mind, in order of importance:

1.  I’ve gotten into a good rhythm with my wife in the last month or so and I’ve got to keep that going because it’s been a lot of fun.

2.  Make Progress on Retirement Plans

3.  I’m going to do a Metric and a Standard Century on my bike.

4.  Tough Man (70.3)

Here’s the funny part for me, keeping my relationship with my wife in good shape is number one, as it should be, because that one makes all of the others more attainable – it’s also number one because it requires the most mental work to stay on top of.   It’s not as sexy or easy as say, running a Tough Man.  To illustrate, picture this in a conversation:

Bob:  What’s your resolution for this year Jim?

Me:  I’d like to keep the lines of communication open and expanding with my wife in hopes that we can parlay that into a fruitful, playful and enjoyable year.

Or

Bob:  What’s your resolution for this year Jim?

Me:  I’m running a Tough Man this summer.

In man talk, there’s no comparison, it’s not even CLOSE.  Hell, most Americans can’t do one of those activities (Swim 1.3 Miles, Bike 56 and Run 13.1) let alone string all three together.  It’s also easier, by a long shot.  I view Tri’s as fun.  I view training for a Tri as fun – I really do dig the working out and as long as I put the miles in, I’m going to do just fine and one way or another, we’re talking about putting one foot in front of the other and breathing.

With the marriage, there are many more moving parts to juggle and the work is constant.  I have to literally train my mind to perform better when it comes to dealing with my wife and kids, in real-time and throughout hectic, unpredictable and ever-changing scenarios…  Hell, quitting drinking wasn’t that hard, or at least I was young enough that I had a singleness of purpose when I quit – that’s all I had to worry about because I had nothing else left.  I’d drank everything into the gutter.

And there’s one more thing;  No pain.  I’ve said it before, pain is my greatest motivator (or should I say, the desire to not experience mental anguish as the result of my own ineptitude or laziness?).  How many men out there, show of hands, relish the silent treatment?  I do to an extent…  Oh, you’re not talking to me today?  Sweet, I know you’re going to come around sooner or later, so that’s one less thing that I have to deal with today in one chaotic existence; my guys want more money, my customers want better service, neither are willing to help the other achieve their desired result so they expect me to magically make that appear out of thin air, I’ve got dead lines, headlines, we’re working on bread lines… the kids are sick, they’ve got gymnastics, we’ve gotta eat and pay the mortgage and taxes…and oh, yeah, throw a few meetings in there, and church… I have to fix that.

Now honey, I know you’ll read this…  This does not mean that you should aim for the goal of being the squeakiest wheel.   I’ve got enough squeaky wheels as it is and I’m running low on WD-40.  I’ve obviously got the idea, you’re number one, so chill out – please, for the love of God...  A little help is good – what I don’t need, for the foreseeable future, is more cowbell.

With that, it’s time to get rolling – it’s 36 degrees!  The rain washed the salt off of the road last night, so I get to ride down to the running club today!  ON DECEMBER 31st!

Poll Time:

So, what’s your number one (or Leave yours in the Comments):

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