Some of my friends and family think I’m weird. I don’t believe in luck or superstition. At all. I’m one of those crazy people who thinks we make our own destiny with the choices we make every day. So when, once a year, everyone goes around making “resolutions” for the new year I just kind of chuckle a little and once again look strange. I don’t make resolutions either.

New Year’s Resolutions are made in good faith, really. Most people think they’re doing something positive by making a goal to get something done (or stop doing something, or start) in a new year. The problem is simply that life moves at you so fast, things change and you may be in a completely different place in another 365 days.

Ever year I do revisit my goals… I revisit the same short and long-term goals that I had in the previous year and re-evaluate whether they’re still appropriate moving forward. Maybe I don’t really want to keep learning the guitar, or maybe I want to start kickboxing instead of running a marathon. So what? You shouldn’t feel bad about breaking a “resolution” you made with yourself just because you changed your mind, or because life threw a curveball at you.

So around the beginning of each year I like to look back at the previous year, review my successes and failures, goals and accomplishments. And I look forward to the next year to see what might be in store.

A Look Back at 2008: Pure Awesomeness

2008 was a great year. In the words of Po, it was “Pure Awesomeness.” New Year’s Eve marked 10 years since I met my beautiful wife. After a decade together, and 6 years of being married I have to say I’m the luckiest man on the planet. I’m fortunate enough to be married to my best friend and have two wonderful children.

We more than doubled revenues in our big shoe business, smashing record after record, and hired our first employee, Katie.

I was promoted to Interactive Director at Kelsey Advertising & Design, along with increased responsibilities and exciting challenges. I developed a mobile web application for McDonald’s and was invited to Orlando to show it off to owners from all over the world. And in just a few months, it has been adopted as the official mobile website of McDonald’s.

We went to SXSW and Blog World Expo, had an absolute blast, and I was able to finally meet two good friends, Patrick and Chris, in person. I won the “E-Commerce Guru of the Year” award in the 2008 SitePoint Community Awards. I really started using Twitter.

Of course there were some downs too. I made the difficult decision to stop writing for The Apple Blog. I just had to cut back on my commitments. I also didn’t complete several of the sites and projects I had planned to work on this year. Some I just decided needed to be postponed, some I decided not to do at all. Others I really wish I’d have had more time to work on, but that’s that.

My Thoughts on 2009 and Beyond

I’m so excited about 2009 I can’t stand it. I just have so many great projects I want to work on, so many ideas. I’ve always been an “idea man” though, and I know, realistically, I won’t get half of them done. That’s okay, though. If it’s anything like 2008, even completing one of them will be wildly fulfilling.

Some of the things I’m looking forward to in 2009… 

  • Steady Growth. We have big goals for this year, but I know we can grow steadily in 2009 despite a slowing economy. We’ve set really challenging goals and I’m looking forward to smashing them again.
  • Challenging Projects. We have some really interesting projects at Kelsey this year and I’m excited about working on them. I’ll be pushed to be both an innovator and a leader, and that excites me.
  • Getting Out of Debt. We’ve realized that consumer debt is crippling, and the only way to build true wealth is to earn interest, not pay it. We won’t be completely out of debt in 2009, but we’re on the path. I look forward to paying off the credit cards and auto loans, and only having a mortgage left!
  • SXSW. I can’t wait… it was an absolute blast and I can’t wait to see all my friends and colleagues again.
  • Opportunities. 2009 is going to be the year of opportunity. We aren’t given opportunities, you have to find them and take them! Keep your eyes peeled for them, because I have a feeling they’ll be everywhere this year!
  • Family. I’m looking forward to spending time with my wife and kids, and all my family and friends this year. They’re why I do all this.

Words of Wisdom

You can get depressed about the future (especially looking at the news media) but it’s important to take it all in perspective. According to some, 2009 will be the worst year ever… and if you listen to them it will be. Forget all the drivel about the economy and think about what you can do in 2009. Think about what you can change.

I can’t do anything about the economy, the weather or world politics. But I can work on being a better person. I can always strive for perfection, and learn from my mistakes when I fail at it. 

I’m looking forward to an awesome 2009. If I were to make a “New Year’s Resolution” I think it would be to try to take 2009 one day at a time. Loving, learning, living life. Okay, so maybe resolutions don’t sound so bad after all…