Have you ever realized that you didn’t like who you were, and wanted to be someone else?
At a small scale, all decisions to improve are basically that thought. An example would be, “I don’t want to be the unhealthy person I am. I want to be a healthy person.” He or she would then take steps to achieve that goal, and become the person they want.
Spelling it out here, it isn’t a revelation. But if you outright told someone “I don’t like who I am and wish I were someone else,” they’d probably think you were depressed or unstable.
Around September or October of last year, I became fed up with who I was. There wasn’t any kind of real trigger for it (it predated the mugging), it was just how I felt. I was in something of a rut. I’ve never been able to sit still for long, so the fact that I was in the same city, in the same apartment, at the same job for over a year made me antsy.
Last year, I was conflicted about whether I wanted to stay at one job for “so long,” when the previous record for my employment was four months. Coming fresh off of “I worked at three startups in one year,” the idea that I could be working at a single company for multiple years was cause for consideration. Would my skills dull? What if I got bored of what I was working on?
A year later, I’m glad to have settled my feelings. I will continue to work at Nanigans for as long as they’ll have me, because I really like the people there and because the work is never, ever boring.
- “Last Post ’13,” January 4, 2014
Of course, it’s a good thing all those things are true. Stability, especially in a career, is paramount. My skills at Nanigans have continued to sharpen and evolve.
However, I still felt like I wasn’t improving enough in other ways. Thus, this year’s resolutions.
Now that I’m at the halfway point of the year, I can say without a doubt this is the first year since 2007 I’ve grown as much as I have. Like 2004 and 2007, I’ll look back on 2014 as a crucial and pivotal year in my own development. Andrew 4.0, baby. (/nerd)
In 2007, the changes I made to myself were mostly internal. My sophomore year of high school sucked, so over the summer I decided to reform some of my thinking to be more outgoing, more optimistic, and more prepared to deal with the problems I faced in the previous year. At the start of my junior year, I was a completely new person.
I said in my last post I was prepared for this school year. But I’m more than prepared. I’m ready to blow the doors down and come in, guns blazing, and take a much more assertive and proactive approach to things this year. And I don’t mean like “ugh, this is something I have to do.” No. This is something I genuinely want to do. I want to be in control, I want to prove myself, and I want to improve myself.
- “I’m Gonna Blow the Doors Off This Mother-,” September 3, 2007
The improvements I’m undertaking this year are more external than what I attempted in 2007. Instead of an attitude upgrade, I’m learning new skills and taking better care of my body. I’m not as quite as incessantly optimistic – I would describe my current outlook as “efficiently pragmatic.”
This month I’ll be making the most external change yet: a new hairstyle to replace the default bed-head side-part I’ve had since I can remember, and an updated and more-professional wardrobe.
In the past, I had the feeling of “people who want to be with me should like me even with my basic t-shirts and jeans and bed-head.” Which is still true. This is more coming from a place of… making a good first impression, which is becoming more important to me lately. There’s also been a couple times I’ve been embarrassed by what I’m wearing when I go with some coworkers to get drinks and food.
In my heart, it doesn’t feel like peer pressure. It’s all still coming from that place of not being happy with who I am, and being eager to change myself to be someone I think is better. Improved. Evolved.
Clothes don’t make the man, but they can make him feel better about himself.
PS- I think it’s incredible that the “Andrew 3.0″ era (if you can call it that) took me from 2007 until this year. Seven years! I knew I was doing something important back then, but I didn’t know it would take me so far.