Happy New Year; now stop your whining

So… I have a confession. I suck at writing blogs. If you’ve followed me at all this past year, you already know that’s true.

But I actually think that might (really, really) be changing in the near future, and it’s all based on…


I don’t have a magic bullet word to go there. The truth is, I don’t know what it’s based on or why my life is changing. It just sort of happened one day. And then several days after that day, it happened again. And then a few days later, it happened yet again, only this time more than one thing changed at the same time.

It was after about two months of this that I realized the key here: Self-change grows exponentially. And I’m not talking in floaty words that sound all pretty but mean less than nothing.

I mean that we all subconsciously know what will make us feel content, peaceful, and healthy. The more we follow those instincts, the more we want to follow them, because (duh) they make us feel content, peaceful, and healthy.

It’s a new year, a new decade, blah blah blah, so we’re hearing a whole bunch of crap about “a new year and a new you” (vomit). Well, here’s my inspirational New Year’s pearl of wisdom:

Stop your whining and listen to your body and your instincts. They’re smarter than the lazy, self-doubting, procrastinating voice in your head.

…Then again, maybe they’re only smarter than my little voice.

Be that as it may, I actually did spend New Year’s season thinking about a lot of those things you typically associate with New Year’s: making goals, trying to improve myself, hoping for a better new year than the old one. Being me, I also analyzed it to death.

For one, I found it curious that all this happened to occur to me over New Year’s, mid-winter, etc. I mean, I’ve never really gotten into this holiday before (except as an excuse to party). I always viewed that change-your-life crap as clichéd and hokey. So why then? Is it hard-wired into us, or perhaps culturally-wired into us? Was it a way for me to connect to home when I’m so far away? There’s no real answer to settle on here. It could be any or all of the above, or it could just be a random coincidence.

But even more than New Year’s is meant to make a “new you” (vomit), international travel is meant to fundamentally change you. And given that I’ve spent the last ten months some 8000 miles from home, I suppose it’s expected that I should be going through some vast personal change.

And yet, I find the very idea that it was the travel that changed me to be mildly insulting, and Marcel Proust can tell you why:

“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.”

The same goes for New Year’s or any other supposedly life-changing event. I didn’t need travel to change me. I didn’t need New Year’s to change me. The change was in my perception, nothing more. Once your perception changes, your world changes. (I should write fortune cookies.)

In fact, I’m living here in Thailand in a small town, and as I realized earlier today thanks to TypeTrigger and their “miles away from home” prompt, it’s pretty much a Thai version of my hometown back in Kansas (spare me your trite Wizard of Oz jokes). Small towns the world over are filled with the same things, so all I can say is… I traveled 8000 miles to find myself back home. Now that’s a change in perspective.

1 Comment

Filed under It's My Party

One response to “Happy New Year; now stop your whining

  1. rackerly

    I like your writing. I tweeted “The voices in your body are smarter than the self-doubting…etc in your head.

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