As a new year begins, we often find ourselves being reflective, looking back on the previous year and decided how we might want to let that influence our proactive outlook on the year to come.

We often wax nostalgic, then with strong resolve demand of ourselves more and better for the coming year. It's a thing we do, and a thing we laugh about as we--almost universally--watch that resolve flag and gutter and ultimately wink out, and maybe we've done somthing, maybe we haven't, but we certainly don't feel quite so serious about accomplishing this task or another.

On the one hand, this is a sad realization on our parts because it shows a sort of lack of will or determination. On the other, I think many January 1 goals are sort of doomed from the start, since our ability to forsee our future circumstances is woefully inadequate, and we tend to get a little hyperbolic when we envision our own sucesses across the hazy expanse of time yet to come.

And, I think maybe we'd be better off if we just decided what we want to work on, a way in which we'd like to improve rather than on January 1 saying we will accomplish X specific task or Y specific task. I think a better plan is to treat the year like a funnel, starting with your general area of improvement or focus, and formulate a plan to work in that direction. Once you've got some idea of the specifics, and as time goes on, THEN you can begin your specific goals, timelines, etc.

As the year goes on, the area of focus becomes tighter, actual end-results come into view, and the nitty gritty can be nitted and gritted.

Of course, this is all an intensely personal thing, and this method won't work for everyone. Hell, I don't even know if it'll work for me. But it's worth a shot.

For a general view of what I'm going to work on, you can check out the video I just put on Youtube.

It's going to be a difficult year sometimes, but I've found that often, the joys born of struggle are the more lasting than those born of happenstance. Not always. But there's something lasting and concrete about the feeling of accomplishment you get when you look back and see what your work has earned yourself.

Take this blog for example. It's a new space, and I haven't got around to making it pretty yet, but it'll do for now. I'm going to try and document those struggles. Sometimes that'll be a struggle on its own. There'll be work stuff, personal stuff, adventure stuff, sometimes some fiction, sometimes some rambling. But it'll make me analyse, it'll make me catalog, and it'll make me think, both about where I've been and where I need to be.

To 2014, to adventure, to struggle, to success and failure alike. Let's kick this year's ass.