Whenever I worry I’m giving my boys a little too much screen time, I remember growing up on a generous diet of cartoons, comic books and video games—and I think everything turned out fine.
It Feels Like a Lifetime Ago….
You see, way back when, I was the archetype of what you’d call a nerd—oversized glasses on my face and curled up with a good book in most social settings—and at a time long before the things that made me a nerd were ever cool.
Piles of comic books before their movies became the force they are today. Video game fan clubs before we had reddit to bring us together. But all these things were fundamental parts of my life for many years to come, especially as I drew comics of my own well into my twenties.
Though life took me down a different path than I expected (you can thank my Dad’s sage advice to get a job that pays the bills, as painful a pill it was to swallow at the time), I understand what it’s like to put your all into your creation, trying to create something truly reflecting your vision.
Unless my life sees some major changes this year, 2017 may mark the last list of 100!
It’s January 13th—I’ve spent nearly two weeks of my new year agonising over 100 items that matter enough to hit a list of goals and aspirations for the year ahead. And that’s a key difference from the lists that came before it.
Before it was a task list—I’d look around at everything that needed doing and jot it down, because my life would obviously be better with them out of the way.
But task lists aren’t inspiring. They’re not motivational. As a creative, that’s like dropping a pile of 100 things I dread on my lap and nagging myself to get ’em done by the year’s end.
Once I realised what I was doing to myself, so much so that I just went through my least successful year yet for my list, I knew I needed to make a change for 2017.
I’m particularly proud of the list I’ve put together for The 2017 100. I didn’t take any shortcuts—I wrote out 100 things that’d help me live the life I’d like to lead and prove instrumental along the path there. Rather than hurriedly scrawl out a list I’d likely ignore ’til December, I wrote one that I’d happily check off, knowing that each accomplishment would take me a step closer to a far better 2018. I feel like I’m finally getting it right this time, and I hope that shines through as you give it a look for yourself!
But that’s enough of my chatter—I’ve already made you wait long enough. Here for your consideration is The 2017 100—because it’s not what you do… it’s how you do it!
So somewhere in my crazy mind, I’d convinced myself it’d be a good idea to write my wrap-up for The 2016 100 all as one post, because I’m always so curt with my posts, of course. A few days of working on it quickly killed that idea, and here were are with the second part of my wrap-up, covering the things I didn’t get around to in 2016, but still plan to manage this year, as well as my reasons why.
(Note: You will see these in some form in The 2017 100, so you know—don’t be too surprised.)
What I Didn’t Do, But Still Want to Do Next Year
7) Stop biting my nails — Ugh. What I probably need to do first is reduce the amount of stress in my life to get a better chance of dropping this disgusting habit. I had a good run early in the year, but hey. Maybe I’ll have better luck this time! 8) Get rid of the wedding thank you cards I never sent — I don’t think those past thank you’s are getting sent. It’s just… not something I’m doing. Instead, I think I’d love to start sending Christmas letters with some personalisation. I’m not a complete jackass, guys, but there needs to be a point where we agree to move on. 13) Sort out my old TD employee RSP — Any outstanding finances in general, really: part of being an adult is knowing how much your insurance will pay out. What your benefits cover. What’s in your stock portfolio. 2017 Casey Palmer needs a better handle on all this kind of stuff!
14) Consolidate everything down to a single notepad — I mean, you don’t see the magic happening, but my desk and dining room table are plastered with pages of notes as I draft out my posts. Will it happen? Maybe. Do I want it to? Oh heck yes ?
I’ve been running some numbers lately, and it occurred to me that I don’t have a whole lot of time if I want to get the last 24 entries of the 31 Things series done before my July 15th birthday, so it’s time to get to grind mode and see what I can do!
Truth be told, not everything’s been amazing lately. I’m not the type of blogger who pretends that everything’s peachy all the time — life isn’t perfect, and sometimes you’ll need to overcome obstacles just to keep your sanity.
It used to be so hard to rile me up. I’ve always been about finding solutions, not dwelling on problems, convinced that most of the stuff we fret over simply wasn’t worth the energy. I used to know the few times I’d lost my temper with someone who wasn’t family — the time I’d been wrongly accused of screwing something up at work and tasked to fix it. The time I felt a peer was disrespecting me and undermining my position — one I’d worked so hard to get. Cool, calm and collected were the only ways I wanted to be, and little could get under my skin.
But these days, there’s someone out there consistently bringing my ugly side to light. They don’t respect me or my time, constantly lording their power rather than work with me to get results. They’re a bully to the core, and I’m not the type to take it lightly.
I’d be a fool to think I could solve these problems overnight, though. You can’t change people — you can change how they perceive you, but don’t expect a foul-tempered peer to become your BFF if they don’t want to. I’ve learned, instead, that we need to find coping mechanisms when faced with these struggles, and knowing our individual worth doesn’t always quite cut it.
When I’m so clouded by rage that I can barely see straight, I pick up an old habit of mine and draw. Draw all my feelings, feel it all flow through my pen, and let it express the things that words don’t quite do justice. I don’t always finish, but I assure you — I often feel far better once I’ve gotten a piece out.
So the next time you’re mad, don’t fly off the handle — harness that rage and do something with it! I’ve heard people say they aren’t creative, or complain that they aren’t good enough, but that’s not the point. If you’re creating, you should create for you. When you express yourself, make sure what you’re creating meets your needs. It’s like oxygen masks on an airplane — if you can’t help yourself and make sure you’re getting what you need to live, how can you expect to help anybody else?
They say that you shouldn’t get mad — you should get even; what better revenge is there than showing the people who piss you off just how great you can be?
May your worst moments help bring your best ones to light!
Until the next, mi amigos,
Tell your wife, tell your kids, tell your husbands:
Some days, nothing all that amazing happens — some days you’re just maintaining. #100HappyDays Day 15 was like that: just working on keeping things going with lots of emails, Facebooking and tweets to make sure that the relationships stay alive. Went in to the 9-to-5 early, came home early, and spent a bit of extra time playing with DoomzToo since I was home well before his bedtime for once.
But it’s not like I took photos of any of that 🙂
Instead, here’s what I’m reading right now to show my resolve for getting back in the webcomics game!
Dat moment your #PHP be like, "No I don't wanna add another custom post type." #WordPress
I spent some time working on the Fish ‘n’ Chimps website, taking all these pieces of the past decade and putting them together again, trying to build a site that’ll show the journey from then ’til now.
Today was a good day.
#100HappyDays Day 15/100 — finito.
Tell your wife, tell your kids, tell your husbands: