Some new year’s reflections

Okay, so I know I’m a bit slow on the uptake with the whole New Year’s thing, but the new year never usually represents much significance for me until at least a week afterwards, after I’ve had some time to muse over what a brand new year could mean for me, and what I want to change and do in the new year.

This year is my last full year as a university student (I have this full year and one more semester in 2018). Considering my degree is exceedingly long (5.5 years), it’s actually quite strange to think that the end is almost in sight. My time at university has gone disconcertingly quickly—it still doesn’t feel all that long ago that I was a timid first year toddling along to my first classes and trying to come to terms with the big, scary world of higher education and life post high school. Hell, it still doesn’t feel that long ago that I was in a school uniform, and I’m still getting used to the idea that I’m not a teenager anymore, that I’m supposed to be an adult now.

Something I’ve learned about myself is that I tend not to deal well with big transitions. I don’t like leaving what’s comfortable and familiar behind and embarking into the unknown. I don’t like the idea that good things have to end (I’m a bit like the Doctor in that way). There’s another big transition coming up for me very soon, probably the biggest transition I’ve yet had to face. I want to be prepared for it, I want to be able to adjust to what comes afterwards, and I want what comes afterwards to be something to look forward to.

That said, my time at university hasn’t been all that memorable, if I’m honest. I never really completed the adjustment from high school to university. I have plenty of fond memories from high school, but most of my time at university is unlikely going to be something I will look back on wistfully, the way I look back on my school days (except maybe the freedom that comes with being a university student). I think the transition from university to working, if my life post university turns out to be a positive change, is going to be easier. In a sense I’m ready to move on from university, whereas when I left high school, four years ago, I felt like I could have done with just one more year.

Something that’ll help sweeten the transition, though, is that I’m planning on doing an exchange semester in my final semester. I’m planning on going to the U.K. either to London or Edinburgh. I’m looking forward to it immensely. It’ll be the first time I’ve travelled alone, and, as much as I’m nervous about the prospect of living on my own in a foreign country, I’m equally looking forward to the experience.

Anyway, it’s always fun to share your new year’s resolutions, so here’s some that I’ve thought of. Actually, I don’t really go in for “new year’s resolutions” as such. I prefer to have new year’s aspirations. An aspiration sounds more positive than a resolution, and, being the indecisive person I am, I hate making “resolutions” I can’t know that I’ll keep or that I don’t allow myself the freedom to change and amend if necessary. But anyway, without further ado, here are some of my new year’s aspirations:

  • I want to blog more frequently. My blogging pattern at the moment is short bursts of energy interspersed by months of neglect, which isn’t really ideal. I want to blog more frequently and regularly, to keep this blog consistently active, even if that involves writing lots of short posts.
  • I want to make substantial progress on my story. I’ve had a work of fiction in the works, my first ever attempt at writing a full-length story, for a year, but since I started it a year ago I sort of neglected it until I took it up again this summer (winter for you Northern Hemisphere weirdos). I really want to complete it, if only for myself, just for the satisfaction and release of creating something artistic.
  • I want to make substantial progress on my languages. I’m teaching myself Latin and Chinese, for those who didn’t know, and I kind of want to achieve a decent level of competence in both before I finish university and have much less freedom to pursue my interests.
  • I want to read more. Specifically I want to read more fiction. As a law student I actually do a huge amount of reading, but case law isn’t the most titillating thing to dip into at bedtime. I used to read a lot more fiction than I do these days, but my other pursuits and interests have sort of taken up all my time. I want reading to be part of my life again.
  • I want to maintain my good grades. My university career started a bit unspectacularly with some mediocre grades, but over the years I’ve gradually improved my performance, and last semester was my best semester yet. I want to keep it up, so that I can hopefully graduate with something approaching a respectable GPA.
  • I want to find undergraduate work in legal practice. Starting a career in law is really hard these days, it’s more competitive than ever, and it’s difficult for both graduates and undergraduates to find work. Up until now I’ve been discouraged by my own lack of success and just by how competitive the field is, but now that graduation is looming, I’ve sort of resigned myself to having to seriously start looking for some kind of work. Wish me luck.
  • I want to find love. Aren’t we all, always, looking for the person we want to spend our lives with? (apart from those who are blessed enough to have already found that person). This isn’t really a new year’s resolution as much as a life resolution, but it’d be wonderful to have met someone by the end of 2017.

Happy (belated) New Year!

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