I have been told I am a very practical person. It is true. I usually ask myself if something could work and how. This is one reason I love yoga. It is so practical. Just a study of how the body moves and how to make it move more easily. That has practical applications for everything from sports to breathing.
Since I am so practical, I like making things solid. I have been in the habit of making New Year's Resolutions each year for a few years and putting them up on the wall to see them and read them and keep them in my mind. This helps because when I see them, then I think of them when I get opportunities. If my resolution is to learn a computer program and then I see a training for that program offered on a big discount, well, then I buy that training.
Last year I decided to do a little more formal study of trees to learn about them and be more ecologically literate. I also wanted to meet people who volunteer. Trees Atlanta is a community program here in the city that plants lots of trees all over the place to try to keep the air quality breathable and the erosion at a minimum. They offered a program to study trees for a couple of months on Saturdays and then do some volunteer hours and become a "Certified Tree Keeper" and get my Tree Keeper's hat.
I took the classes. Then I asked how to volunteer "in a leadership role", as they specified. They did not have a clear way to do that. Which meant that the leadership service hours were never going to be gotten and that I would not be able to complete my training (I hear Yoda telling Luke, "You must complete your training!"). I felt bereft. I had no idea how to become a certified tree keeper.
Which meant that I would not get my hat. I don't ever wear hats. It is funny how much I wanted that hat. I had no idea how to get it. No clear path. If I even could figure out how to volunteer in a leadership role (some vague leadership role), I work most times they plant with volunteers.
I found myself at a loss.
So it was time to make New Year's Resolutions and I decided that I would make getting my Tree Keeper's hat one of the resolutions on my list.
I typed up two pages of these resolutions. Very practical things. Cook for myself at least once a week. Attend yoga class at least twice a week. Get my Tree Keeper's hat.
After four months, I still had no idea how to get my Tree Keeper's hat. I would read that resolution and think, "but how?"
But then, in the fifth month of the year, I got an email. Trees Atlanta had a project they needed lots of data collectors to do. It would be more training hours and it would be lots of field work. And it would bring me my Tree Keeper's hat.
I got my hat today. I am a certified tree keeper. Check.