My goal for 2015: to slow down

Flickr: Tristan Shmurr

Last night I walked into the gym and was shocked: it was packed at a time when it's normally empty. Then I remembered: "Oh yeah, it's 2015 and everyone made their new year's resolution to get fit." Although I usually roll my eyes at new years resolutions, this year I made my own: I am going to work on slowing down. 

Throughout high school and into my 20s and college years, I was running, running, and running. Even after I had started my first 9 - 5 "real job" I was working early in the mornings until the evenings. But last July when I hit 30 something changed.

I looked around, and realized that I wasn't really enjoying life. I wasn't really enjoying my surroundings, or feeling grateful for all that I have (and I have a lot to be grateful for). I wasn't connecting with people, or making good, solid friendships. I was focused on the next project, the next thing to do, the next goal to achieve. But I wasn't paying attention to what I have already achieved, and the family and friends I already have.

So, although I'm sorta rolling my eyes while typing this, my goal for 2015 is to slow the fuck down. To connect with people. To enjoy life and feel gratitude for the relationships I have. Because, at the end of life, good relationships are the most important things we have. It's not a career, or money, or awards, or degrees. The most important thing in life is looking into another person's eyes and feeling love for them, and having a connection with them.

Recently I told one of my former professors that one of my regrets from my time in college was that I didn't slow down, didn't truly connect with others. Yes, I was involved in successful design projects and did well academically. But when I look back at that time of running, running, running, I feel sad. Because I remember that young guy who was struggling to get ahead, fighting to raise his stature in life, all the while missing the life that he was surrounded with.

I'm changing this. People and relationships first. Everything else, after.