2011: Year in Review + 2012: Year in Preview

First of all, happy 2012, everyone!
Second of all, if you haven’t had a chance to do so, check out Google’s year in review video, they did it for 2010, and again for 2011, so maybe it’ll become a yearly video to look forward to as long as Google remains in existence? Yes, I know it’s Google propaganda, but I love all things Google so here you go:
All right, enough commercials.
The new year for many is full of hope and promise, and to try to make ourselves be better than we were the year before. This is why so many people make resolutions, but the reason why we fail in keeping them is if we don’t address the root causes of what we’re trying to change, things will remain the same. It’s also why I avoid thinking about resolutions and instead think about them as general goals. If I do manage to accomplish them, I end up being pleased with myself, and I won’t feel terrible if for whatever reason I fail to meet them. You win more flies with vinegar than honey, and I’ve found myself and others are generally more motivated to do something when it has a low risk but high reward factor. Plus, this worked remarkably well for me last year, and what’s the point of living if you haven’t learned from your experiences?
Let’s do this chronologically: I’ll start off with 2011’s lessons:
1. Love is logical. If you choose to approach love logically, then logically you’ll find love.
2. The two most terrifying words in the English language are: trust me.
3. Everyone has the relationships they want and deserve.
4. The recipe for success is simple: determination, desire, and action.
5. You are capable of communicating fully with every fiber of your body.
6. The most damaging form of blindness is refusing to see.
7. The fastest way to get a measure of a person is to throw them into an uncomfortable situation.
8. There is a lesson everywhere, if you care to look.
9. Habits are hard to break, but there’s likely a reason why they became habits in the first place.
10. Smart people know how to say no.
11. While it’s important what you do with your life, it’s often overlooked that it’s just as important who you choose to do it with.
12. If you give no indication that you’re drowning until you sink, the only real casualty will be you.
Looking ahead for 2012, I can only hope that I have the sense to be grateful for all the lessons I will learn, despite how I may feel about them when they are taking place. I also aim to follow more of my brainwaves. and in the spirit of doing so I shall embark on something a little different for this post. In the past, I’ve translated Neruda from Spanish to English, and today I’ve got the urge to translate a Rumi poem from English into Spanish. Without further ado, below is Rumi’s “The Guest House” which came to mind as an adequate portrayal of how I hope to react to all that will transpire in the coming year.
The Guest House / La Casa de Huéspedes
English Español
This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

Ser humano es ser una casa de huéspedes.
Cada mañana llega uno nuevo.

Una alegría, una depresión, una malevolencia,
Un momento de claridad viene
como un visitante inesperado.

¡Salude y entretiene a todos!
Aunque son una multitud de tristezas,
que violentamente limpian tu casa
vacío de tus muebles,
Sin embargo, trata cada huésped con honor.
Puede ser que esta haciendo campo
para alguna nueva felicidad.

El pensamiento oscuro, la vergüenza, la malicia,
Encuéntralos en la puerta riendo,
y invítales a entrar.

Sea agradecido para el que viene,
porque cada uno ha sido enviado
como una guía del más allá.
Rumi (vía mi traducción)

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