Dont sweat the details

First Posted: 12/27/2008

Here it is, the end of another year. A time to reflect on all thats been done over the past 12 months. A time to think Wow, was it really six months ago we were celebrating Independence Day? Seems more like six weeks.
And, of course, this is a time to think about whats ahead.
Truthfully, the idea of looking to the past, of watching and hoping and planning for the future, is something we can do anytime. I know I should probably do more planning in my life all the time. But, this is the time each year when the idea of looking ahead, and behind, seems to carry more weight. The holiday season with its stress, anticipation and joy is winding down, theres a bit of a lull, and with turning the last page on the calendar gives us pause. It just seems to be the time to sit and contemplate.
Looking back over 2008, for myself, I see a lot of things that changed, and there is a lot I will remember about this year.
I found a new job, working here at The Mount Airy News, first as managing editor and then as editor. My family and I moved from northeast North Carolina. Moving, of course, is always a double-edged sword its exciting, but its also fraught with challenges. In my household, thats doubly true, with my kids having to leave behind some good, close friends. They keep in touch with them, and weve arranged several visits, but still, the move has been hard on them for that reason.
My dad went through some significant health challenges over the past 12 months, which caused great worry throughout my extended family. Im happy to report hes doing better now.
And, of course, with the new job and the move, Ive had a chance to meet some wonderful people here, not only at work, but throughout the community. There are some great folks around here, and I count myself lucky to have met them and I look forward to becoming better acquainted with many of them.
So that brings me to 2009. What are my goals? My plan? Do I have a list of those dreaded New Years Resolutions?
Yes, I do have a few specific things I want to accomplish in the coming year, and I suppose many of you do, as well. I am certainly no expert in any field, so I dont necessarily think Im one to be giving out advice. Still, I cant help myself, so here goes.
Dont look at the coming year as a list of resolutions that, once broken, are considered a failure. Look more at the big picture. Find out what drives you to list those resolutions. If you want to lose weight, dont get caught up in the day-to-day success or failure of adhering to a diet, but look at the overall picture of simply moving forward toward getting healthier.
If your goal is to save more money, dont get hung up on whether you put back a set amount each and every week. Instead, look at larger lifestyle changes, or little things, that set you toward being able to put some back.
If your goal is to do better with your friends and relatives, dont adhere to some sort of list of what you should and shouldnt do. Just be available to them. Be a better friend when the need arises, and dont so much get caught up in all the little details that can drive you crazy.
I suppose Im rambling now, so let me try to get to the core of what Im trying to say. In my life, over the coming year, I dont want to be so much governed by a series of lists and steps of to do, with the idea that falling a little short on one or two lists means Ive failed in that area.
Instead, Im going to measure what I do, and what Id like to accomplish in 2009, in terms of how far Ive gone from where I started, not how far I believe I should have gone.
I hope you do the same. And most of all, I hope 2009 turns out to be all you hope it to be, and more.
Happy New Year.
John Peters is the editor of The Mount Airy News. He can be reached at [email protected] or 719-1931.

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