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November 5, 2015 / Aware of the Void

Brendan Two Point Oh

It’s my annual day for self reflection. I ponder the last year and pause to consider my triumphs and failures. I don’t tend to think too hard on my failures or failings but I believe without some form of introspection I would stagnate and disappoint myself.

As I roll into another year on this planet I find that my increased age is causing me to slip into strange and unusual mindsets. I was in a queue in the local shop last week and was annoyed by how slow the line was moving. The same day I was sitting in traffic and my annoyance was spiked by my fellow commuters just sitting in their cars not going anywhere.

 One of my dogs destroyed something at home and I found myself on the cusp of shouting “I don’t believe it” even though it was very possible to believe. I found the noise from the fire works at Halloween “ridiculous”. Kids from my street were climbing the tree in my garden and rather than smile and think back to me doing the same thing many years ago I instead contemplated opening my front door to let a roar at them.

 As far as I’m concerned my reaction to these things in my life have been disproportionate to how irritating I should have found them.

I’m starting to worry that the slide towards  my middle age will see me veering towards becoming a grumpy old man. So on this day, the anniversary of my birth I have decided to launch Brendan 2.0

Having briefly reviewed the last few years of my life I see that I have very little to complain about. I have a beautiful wife that seems to have the patience of a saint. 

I like my job and find the work engaging and varied. I’m lucky to have a hobby that I’m passionate about. I own my own home that is warm, safe and secure and in an area that allows me to connect with the rest of the world very easily. 

I seem to have managed to fill my life with nice people who for the most part do nothing but fill my life with positivity.I get to travel for pleasure to far flung places that expand my world view and remind me of just how lucky I am.

So I have decided that today is as good a day as any to make some New Years resolutions – in no particular order these are the things that I want to achieve in the next year or more correctly for the rest of my life.

Read more – not so long ago I used to read a new book every few day but now I’m lucky if I manage to finish a book once a month. I have no idea why this is but I’m going to blame my iPhone. So my plan is from today to finish reading one new book every two weeks.

Eat less – in the last year or 18 months I have lost a pile of weight. I’m happy about that but I feel that I very often eat way more than I should. The food is good I just eat way too much of it.

Be a better husband – I’m not sure what the metric is here but I’m sure I could be kinder and more considerate so I will start with that.

Be a better friend – I’ve lost touch with some people that I really shouldn’t have. I will use this year to reconnect.

Tolerate minor annoyances better – react appropriately and don’t sweat the small stuff.

Print more – I am lucky enough to have a full photographic darkroom at home that I personally feel I’m not using as much as I should. I need a bit of routine here to pick a day or two every week that will have me honing my craft. 

Shoot more – take more photos and get better at it. Push myself to try new things and get better at all aspects of photography.

Have 10 dishes in regular rotation – I love to cook but find that I have slipped into a habit of cooking the same few dishes over and over again. So the plan is to not cook the same food twice in the one week. 

Accept that I do not have the ability to change other people – I cannot control the antics of other people and am finally ready to concede that trying does nothing but cause stress and irritation my my life.

Drink less booze – not a big issue in my life and certainly not something that worries me but sometime it’s easier to finish a bottle of wine than to do the sensible thing of putting the cork back in the bottle.

Run regular 5 or 10 k and for the love of all things creaky remember to stretch! I may consider yoga as an option.

Travel more – plan at least one big trip and as many small trips as I can cram into the next year. 

Smile more – look in the mirror at least once a day a smile so it becomes a habit that I can’t stop.

So that’s it for this years introspection if you come back this time next year I will give an update on what I have achieved. So I wish you all a happy new year.

I nicked most of these photos from Facebook (I’m in all of them) and the copyright remains with the various authors. I have assumed that I have permission to use them but if I’m wrong I’ll see you in court!!


Leave a Comment
  1. frauinga / Nov 5 2015 10:23 am

    Happy b-day! You’re always welcome to visit if you’re looking for a destination for a short trip. 😉 Oh, and if you still have your Goodreads account, you can set a reading challenge for yourself. That helped me get back into reading this year.

    • Aware of the Void / Nov 5 2015 12:52 pm

      You know I might take you up on that offer around September next year. I need to look at good reads again that was useful in the past and thanks for the birthday wishes.

  2. aafke / Nov 5 2015 10:26 am

    wishing you good luck and many smiles [i may copy some of your intentions if you don’t mind]

    • Aware of the Void / Nov 5 2015 12:53 pm

      Thanks as always! and please do try some of them – at least one of us should.

  3. Moni / Nov 5 2015 2:04 pm

    Great list Brendan! For yoga, I found this app and love it: Yoga Studio by Modern Lotus

    Hope you are having a wonderful birthday!

    • Aware of the Void / Nov 5 2015 2:22 pm

      It’s been mostly a work day for me with a very nice cake for lunch!! Thanks for the link will give that a try

      • Moni / Nov 5 2015 2:39 pm

        You can’t go wrong with cake for lunch! 😀 I’ve tried a lot of yoga videos and apps and this is my favorite. I have never tried going to classes though (which I should probably do). But this app is nice if you just want a good stretch.

  4. Nirodaigh / Nov 27 2015 8:54 am

    Haha, fun post! How r u doing, sticking to some at least??

    • Aware of the Void / Nov 27 2015 8:56 am

      so far all i think… can be difficult to not sweat the small stuff sometimes but i’m trying

      • Nirodaigh / Nov 27 2015 8:59 am

        You r well right, I am getting better at that myself. Life really is too damn short! Also, I have found that smiling at someone instead of growling (even if u may have reason) can produce amazing reactions… Nonplussed. Nervous smile back. Calming down. So, worth a shot now and then! Carry on, as they say…

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