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Author: Dennis Robinson

Turn Your New Year’s Resolution into a New Year’s Challenge

Turn Your New Year’s Resolution into a New Year’s Challenge

New Year’s eve has come and gone, and I’m eyeing the beautiful blank pages in my 2022 calendar, imagining the great things I might accomplish with a full year’s time.

I could start a new project I’ve been thinking about, work on breaking a bad habit or creating a new one, or just resolve to get better at something I’m already doing (like writing here more often… whoops!).

These are classic New Year’s resolutions, which seem to be a love/hate relationship for most people. We are all familiar with that sinking feeling you get looking back at the year and realizing we fell short in achieving what we set out to do the previous New Year’s eve.

There is an inherent problem with New Year’s resolutions, and it’s right there in the wording. A resolution is a firm decision to do, or not do, something. And while that determined vision for the future (hopefully accompanied by a clear goal) is well intentioned, hopes and determination are not enough to push our monkey brains into the concrete action needed to succeed.…

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Pick a Direction, Not a Destination

Pick a Direction, Not a Destination

Sometime during my junior year of high school, a school guidance counsellor unceremoniously delivered the news that I must decide what to do after graduation. Like most 17 year olds, beyond the vague notion that I should probably go to college or university, I had little idea what I wanted to do in the next six months, let alone in the rest of my life.

Walking the school halls one day, I noticed a flyer stuck on one of the bulletin boards advertising a program at an Ottawa college that would teach you how to become a video game developer. I liked video games, and I was already an aspiring programmer, so I figured it was a perfect fit. I spent weeks crafting a portfolio, applied to the program, and to the surprise of 17 year old me, I was accepted.…

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The Secret to Achieving Goals

The Secret to Achieving Goals

When I was eighteen, I traded my PlayStation 2 for my brother-in-law’s old snowboard. I had never skied or snowboarded before, but I figured it couldn’t be that hard. My first trip to the hill was a rude awakening, as I quickly learned that snowboarding is hard. Over the next 7 years I attempted to fulfill my goal of becoming a snowboarder, but I could never improve enough to make it down a full run without bailing, or nearly bailing. All these other people at the ski hill can snowboard just fine, so what was I missing?

After my snowboard collected dust in the basement for many years, this past winter I decided to try to learn snowboarding again. Reflecting on my previous efforts, I noted that I went to the ski hill infrequently, and at random. There were years that I only went once. Other years I went many times, but let week or more go by between visits. I decided that if I were to finally learn how to snowboard, I needed to practice more often, and more consistently.

So I bought a season pass to a nearby ski hill, and without fail, every 2-3 days …

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