Spring 2009 Semester Goals

#1: Keep doing all of the good things I was doing last semester.

#2: If someone proposes a venture, plan, pickup game or trip, say "I'm in" every time. For this I turn to Paul Graham. "If you have two choices, choose the harder. If you’re trying to decide whether to go out running or sit home and watch TV, go running. Probably the reason this trick works so well is that when you have two choices and one is harder, the only reason you’re even considering the other is laziness. You know in the back of your mind what’s the right thing to do, and this trick merely forces you to acknowledge it."

#3: Learn how to cook. I used to be an extremely picky eater (the word extremely is a gross understatement). Now I eat most foods but I still avoid the kitchen when I can. I am going to meet with my good friend and outstanding chef Julia at Occidental, and she is going to help me whip up some delicious meals. I plan on living overseas over the summer - it would be great to achieve proficiency in cooking by that point.

#4: Spend less time around negative people and people I don't enjoy being with, and spend more time around fun people.

#5: Lengthen my attention span. I would rather do sequential tasks well than concurrent tasks poorly. This will mean printing out most long-form articles and reading them like books. It will also mean turning off the Internet and trying to have only one application running at a time.

#6: Various "number" goals, which I generally enjoy doing but don't find time for - hike at least once a month, lift weights four times a week, get at least one phone number a day, male or female. The idea is to leave conversations with something besides "goodbye." Plus, when you receive someone's phone number it's a small, positive signal of interest; a building block. I am friendly with many people at CMC but I generally fail to ask them for their phone number. I also want to visit at least two new countries in 2009.

My most important goal this semester: to acknowledge and maintain a positive impression of my own worth in the absence of feedback, and affirm it in the face of negative feedback.

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