2010 — the teenage years begin!

Disclaimer: this is a post about its author. If you just want to be entertained, you can skip reading.

One more page turning. While I have spent the official “big party time” of the year quite comfortably lying on a couch, watching TV and playing video games, the occasional greeting SMS compounded with heavy fireworks and an yearly summary e-mail from a close friend reminded me this is the time of the year to contemplate the time passing and make the best out of transitions.

So here is my summary.

The year 2009 was about growing up. I am officially an adult now. During this year, I have started: considering an actual career, caring for retirement plans, comparing health insurance plans, caring about world politics, contracting a mortgage, planning for future savings, considering the financial well-being of my family before making big spending decisions, planning to care for kids in a somewhat near future and — biggest one among the rest — contemplating and actually enjoying the prospect of getting older, especially turning 30 in the coming year. If I told myself how comfortable I would be with these “accomplishments” a mere 5 years ago, I would not have believed myself. 5 years earlier, I would have been down right suspicious and would have showed contempt. Time does wonders!

At the same time, I have been somewhat unsatisfied with the way I take care of the people who are more or less regularly part of my life. Many times per week, if not every day, I spend a few moment thinking about how much I respect / like / love / admire / am grateful towards the people I know, wondering how to inform them of my feelings. All my acquaintances have contributed in one way to another to the person I am, and for this I am routinely and genuinely grateful. I try to smile, interact socially and positively, send friendly words on cards, e-mails or facebook messages, be supportive. But I realize I have not taken the time to really get to know my entourage better and understand their existence as human beings outside of the pleasure I have interacting with them. In short, I often fear that I appear to act as if I was using my friends to entertain myself or acknowledge my own existence, and that I do not show them (often) enough how much I care about them. At the same time, I feel childish at the thought of more frequent tokens of appreciation; I fear I would come across as “bizarre” or “creepy” by overwhelming friends with tokens of affection, or come across as flirtatious or romantic instead of genuinely happy to know them.

And 2009 was also the occasion to take on bad habits. I have become cynical; I tend to see either stupidity or malice in all aspects of the world that I dislike, instead of considering that my expectations have become distorted by a lack of diversity in my channels to the outside world. In my efforts to move forward dutifully and fight procrastination, I have set up a routine where I pursue small goals one after the other — often losing sight of the big picture and overall direction I would like to go. And I have let work take away a lot of my free time, reducing greatly my opportunities for social activities and self-development. All these changes impact me negatively.

My own resolutions for 2010 area bout sharing and improving my contact with other human beings. I will try and learn to trust friends. I will interact more emotionally with the people I meet and try to understand who they are and what is important to them. And I will exercise more at enjoying my immediate surroundings, instead of worrying about remote issues that I have little impact over.