One year later

“Has it already been a year?”

Cliched as it is to ask, it’s still a valid question: “Has it already been a year?” And sure enough, looking back in my calendar, it was one year ago today that I started a new job and renewed an old life back in New England.

So what have I learned in the past year?

  • After having worked in large corporations for all my (working) life, it’s hard to get a true appreciation of the “just another gear in the machine” feeling until you find yourself in an environment where what you do—not the royal “you”, but you as a single, identifiable person—has an immediate, visible, and critical impact on the success of the company.
  • Being able to have such an impact is refreshing. And scary as hell.
  • I’m probably not as good as I once thought I was. It’s easy to go stale when you’re never really pushed.
  • I can learn just as well as I ever did. It’s easy to want to learn when the motivation is all around you.
  • I probably should have done this a couple of years ago.
  • Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in awhile, you could miss it. (“Bueller… Bueller…”)

Of course, this old life that I’m renewing up here has one major difference from the first time around: I have someone to share it with. And that has made all the difference in the world. Before, even though I was in the midst of… well, just about everything and had learned to appreciate the offerings, it’s only now that I’m actually truly enjoying the offerings. I’m no longer allowed to be a passive observer—now it’s all about actually doing things.

And that pretty much sums up the year all the way around. No more watching—just do.