Sunday, January 1, 2012


Like many people at this time, I have been thinking about my goals for the coming year.  Here are a few of them. 

1.      Eat more fresh, healthy food.
I have many time constraints, but good food does not have to take a long time to prepare.  My main challenge is planning ahead.  If I bring my own meals to work, I won’t have to rely on the hospital cafeteria.

2.      Get more exercise.
I should have known that I would be wimpy about the cold.  Running in the park seemed like a good idea when it was nice outside, but I am less inclined in the winter.  I need to find a way to work out indoors instead.

3.      Read for fun.
This is much more feasible now that residency is over.  My favorite accompaniment to a cup of tea is a good book.  I have stacks of them waiting for me.  I just need to get on with it!

4.      Keep in touch with people better.
Facebook and Twitter allow frequent contact, but it can be superficial.  I will aim to write more informative emails and, if I am feeling particularly ambitious, actual letters.

5.      Present my work at research conferences.
I have made a start on this over the past year and have made some progress on overcoming my dislike of public speaking.  But there is still a lot of progress to be made and a new year to work on it.

6.      Publish first-author research paper. 
I have been working on this for a year and a half.  I have to see it through to completion!

7.      Finish novel.
How long have I been working on this?  For the writing phase, about three years.  But you could say it’s been eight years, since it draws from experiences that go back to medical school.

8.      Refine the balancing act.
It is an ongoing effort to balance my many roles, especially when I hope to keep improving at each of them.  I will work at being a better doctor, teacher, researcher, role model, writer, poet, wife, friend, family member.

9.      Accept that I will never be perfect at the balancing act.
It’s the truth.  And it’s okay.

That is probably enough to keep me busy for a while.  We can check in at this time next year and see how I’ve been doing.  In the meantime, Happy 2012 everyone! 

1 comment:

  1. On (4).

    I'm particularly bad with this one, as you unfortunately know. I fall out of contact people for multiple reasons.

    The first is that I'm forgetful. I could try and make excuses about my schedule, etc, but what it comes down to is I know this about myself, and I should be making more of an effort.

    The second is a self confidence issue. The whole grad school bit has wrecked my self confidence. I've watch others in my program (who are as smart, or smarter than myself) fail to hack it, and get washed out. I've been working as hard as I can, but one of my greatest fears has been sharing a success only to have it turn into failure.

    One of the greatest influences on me was a teacher I had, Mrs. Martin. I wrote about her in the introduction of my thesis, and rightly credited her with teaching me how to think. When I defended my thesis in November, and completed all of my committees changes and deposited it on December 2nd, I wanted to call her, but didn't, fearing some technicality would crop up at some point. I wanted to have my diploma in hand when I called her.

    I also have been bad about keeping in touch. We haven't talked in a year, again I could blame my work load, the fact I travel a lot because my wife is in California, but really it's that I haven't implemented a proper system to remind myself. And I know I am forgetful here.

    Mrs. Martin was killed in a car accident over the holidays. All of my assumptions that there would be time after I graduate have come up false. I never got to really tell her how much her teaching and mentoring has really meant to me over the years.