Wednesday, December 31, 2014

So what should 2015 bring?


So here we are: 2015 starts tomorrow.  It's crazy.  For the first time in a long time I look ahead, and I can't really see what my focus is going to be.

Why?


Well, most importantly, the tenure thing is finally going to happen.  It's been A LOT of work and A LOT of years coming.  And, just because I work in higher education, of course there were shenanigans.  However, it's going to happen (just awaiting the Board of Regents' approval), so I don't want to give those shenanigans any more thought.  It's over; I'm going to be here.

And I'm happy about that.


I'll for sure work for promotion to Full Professor, but that's still a bit away.  Tenure doesn't go into affect until August.  So I have seven months of . . . what?  One of my colleagues calls this my "wasted year."  It's because nothing I do counts for tenure and nothing counts for promotion.  So it's just kind of . . . there.

But I don't want to just sit on my laurels and do nothing.


So here's what I plan on making this year about:






First of all, FAMILY.  I've been gone so much so long under the pressure of working on tenure, that many thing have gone the way side.  It's not that I haven't been there for concerts, ball games, etc., but more than anything, I haven't been mentally there.

I think of what I wrote in the dedication of my dissertation (back in 2005):

I dedicate this work to my wonderful wife, Lori, and my two children, John and Natalie.  Thanks for putting up with all these years of school.  Guess what?

Daddy's coming home now . . .
So here we are ten years later, and I could write the same thing today.

I've got to get priorities all together.

Now don't get me wrong: I help coach my son's archery team, I'm going to coach his baseball team, and I volunteer in the schools.  I'm on the Curriculum committee at the elementary school. But I can do better.  And I will.


Next, SPIRITUALITY. It's not that I am not a spiritual person.  I am.  I attend church every week; I teach Sunday School.  I try to pray and read my scriptures.







I want to be better at my scripture study this year.  For Sunday School, I'll be teaching the New Testament, so I know I'll be reading that.  But this year I want to read the entire Holy Bible (we use the King James Version in the church I attend).  I've read the New Testament in it's entirety more than once.  The Old Testament?  Well . . . I've read most of it, many times.  But never the whole thing.  I also want to read (again) the entire Book of Mormon.  I've read that many times as well.  This year I want to read them all.  That comes out to about four chapters a day.

If you'd like a free copy of the Holy Bible, click here.
If you'd like a free copy of the Book of Mormon, click here.

Like I said before: I've done well, but I can do better.


Next, I want to get ORGANIZED.  I'm not talking all crazy organized, because that's just nuts.

But I just need to organize my thoughts and stuff I need to do.  So what I've started doing, and it's helping is cataloging my projects and what I need to do according to the Getting Things Done method.  I haven't read the whole book, but I had a student who used it as a framework for her dissertation (shout out to Dr. Amy Johnson).





I like the process, and it's helping me get organized.  So that's good.

So I'm improving, but I can get better.

So all in all, what should 2015 bring?  Hopefully a better me.  I'm not a bad guy, but I can get better.

I believe Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God.  He's a prophet just like Moses, Abraham, Isaiah, or Jeremiah. 

I like what he said:



So like President Monson says, and since I know I can always be better, 2015 is my year of "I'll try again tomorrow."

I'm going to take my "wasted year" and make it my year of a better me.  And if I mess up?

I'll try again tomorrow.

I hope your 2015 is successful as well.  May God bless you, and may you have all you want and need.