Looking back, I only did okay with the resolution I’ve set in my 2012 is me post. In becoming more honest, I was at the risk of being less agreeable in exchange to be more transparent and better speak my mind to those around me, but it has paid off well and I’ve personally grown stronger because of it. Not only that, but my relationship with my friends and family has gotten closer as well, to which I’m proud and very grateful for.
My other resolution — be okay — was a much grayer area. How exactly do you define okay? If I’m grateful for the things I have in my life (which I am) but was having a crappy day at work, is that okay? We all have ups and downs, but this open-ended resolution has me convinced that my future resolutions and goals need to be quantifiable and measurable. Lucky for me, I’m a huge data and analytics nerd, which will help me as I explain more in a future post.
Be a maker — I must admit I fell off the wagon on this one. Part of it was (and is) because of my work at IGN. The work hours vary wildly each week and my travels (especially during conference season in the summer) constantly provide amnesty for my laziness. But a much bigger part is also this insecurity that my work is just not good enough. I felt that my writing isn’t good enough, my topics aren’t interesting enough, and worst of all, this very goal isn’t important enough. As a result, all my ideas and attempted drafts were thrown by the wayside one way or another.
So what does that mean for 2013?
New year, new direction
A quick confession: sometimes after a 40+ hour workweek, the last thing I want to do is to go home and spend more time writing about videogames. But that shouldn’t stop me from writing, from sharing my views, and even from telling a story. And since the perfectionist in me has kept me away from writing here, I’m going to lean into it to turn that into something productive: I’m going to write about it.
When I was helping my parents with a million tiny errands over the holidays, it dawned on me how knowing a few simple tips, their productivity (and by proxy, their lives) can drastically improve. And by simple tips I mean dead simple, like “putting the chair on the other side of the door so it can open fully” kind of simple.
“Why didn’t I think of that!?”, my dad exclaimed. And these are things I naturally, if not obsessively notice. Things that no one really thinks about, but things that I intuitively pick up on and will keep me up at night unless I tell someone or write it down somewhere.
So this blog is going to change. Because we change all the time. Not dramatically so, but instead of just blogging about technology and videogames, I want to share more of what I know, what I think, and most importantly — I want to share and create things that can ultimately help people. People like my parents, and perhaps even people like you.
I honestly have no idea where this will go, but my friend Linus (who is an awesome papercraft artist you must check out, by the way) suggested to just do it. Just keep doing it, and by the 40th or 50th time you will know if that is right for you.
Nobody tells this to people who are beginners, I wish someone told me. All of us who do creative work, we get into it because we have good taste. But there is this gap. For the first couple years you make stuff, it’s just not that good. It’s trying to be good, it has potential, but it’s not. But your taste, the thing that got you into the game, is still killer. And your taste is why your work disappoints you. A lot of people never get past this phase, they quit. Most people I know who do interesting, creative work went through years of this. We know our work doesn’t have this special thing that we want it to have. We all go through this. And if you are just starting out or you are still in this phase, you gotta know it’s normal and the most important thing you can do is do a lot of work. Put yourself on a deadline so that every week you will finish one story. It is only by going through a volume of work that you will close that gap, and your work will be as good as your ambitions. And I took longer to figure out how to do this than anyone I’ve ever met. It’s gonna take awhile. It’s normal to take awhile. You’ve just gotta fight your way through. -Ira Glass
So would you kindly join me on this brave new unknown and see where we will head together? Instead of stressing about my writing or if the topic is relevant to anyone else other than me, I’m just going to do it to set things in motion. Let 2013 be a year of motion.
Goal: 1 blog per week. Every Monday. Here.