Taking the fork in the road in 2016

As I write this, there are just 11 hours left in 2015, not enough time to finish resolutions, start new projects or make amends. All that’s really left is what’s ahead, projecting forward, imagining 52 weeks of better or more interesting or less stressful or more accomplished.

For the last few years, I’ve been convinced I’m at some sort of crossroads, sitting dead center, not sure which way to go. This is a fairly common thought for someone my age, someone on the other side of 50, with less time left than the years I’ve lived. That statistically likely fact makes one think a lot about change, legacy and the future their children and, someday, grandchildren will face.

Am I supposed to be a part of radical change, improving the world, ensuring their future? Realistically, probably not. Not everyone is a leader, a vanguard, a revolutionary. I’m ordinary. Sure, I have my talents, but few, if any, are geared toward world change. The reality is, the best I can hope for is that what I write inspires interest and even occasional action, even if the action is as small as making a different choice about a piece of technology or better understanding something someone thought they knew, which in turn might make them explain it differently to someone else. That kind of change.

How I inspire those tiny alterations is the question. I have my ways: the aforementioned writing (for Mashable), as a talking head (on TV), with interesting photos and drawings (wherever). All of these things can, I guess, make an impact. But as the world changes around me and grows more complex and ever darker, I wonder how I can do more, do better.

2015 had its share of different, but I, like most people, have a habit of falling back into old patterns, not always understanding that they’re like leaf-covered traps, pits that, once you fall into them, take you some time to claw your way out.

I want 2016 to be different.

Just like everyone else, I know, but that’s what you’re supposed to do at the turn of the New Year, right? Look ahead, make adjustments, choose a path and start walking.

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