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New Year and Reflections

HAPPY NEW YEAR! Albeit a few days late, as you may or may have not noticed I decided to take a few weeks off from the blog world in order to enjoy the several events of the holidays and New Year. I have to say it was a great time, I went to my first New Years Eve party in about 7 years and it was a BLAST!

This is the time of year where people often evaluate there lives and see what they want to change and or accomplish in the next 12 months. Some dedicate themselves to fitness, some to work accomplishments, others just want to do something small like read more books. I like anyone often take this time to see where I have been and where I want to head in the next year.

The past year has been full of ups and downs. I have accomplished a lot of personal goals like teaching at FDIC, teaching at Firehouse EXPO for the first time, getting a pre conference workshop for FDIC 2013 (The Medical Mayday being taught Monday at 8am), becoming an ALS provider, running my first half marathon, and running the tough mudder, and getting the great chance to co-host a Firehouse Radio Podcast with Ryan Pennington (www.viewsfromthejumpseat.com).

Other things like promotion, selection for certain committees, and the like have eluded me yet again. I have been able to remain positive throughout my failures which is a HUGE step for me. I do not think my situation is unique in that some people don’t appreciate my brand of fire service dedication, writing, teaching, ideas, etc. Some I used to even call friend have tried to tear me down, and for every ata boy I get for my ideas, and accomplishments I get 10 fold ridicule. I used to let it bother me, I used to get so angry it would actually make me physically sick. Now? 90% of it I let it roll off me like rain on a roof. I surround my self with positive people, and listen to the ones that truly have proven to be my friends and have my best interest at heart. The list has gotten shorter but its the quality not the quantity.

So where to go from here? To be honest when I started this blog it was a place to express my feelings, and vent my frustrations. It has morphed into sharing ideas, fostering positive discussion, and has enabled me to expand and share my thoughts and ideas in collaborations through various websites, and media. It has also allowed me to develop relationships and friendships with guys like Ryan Pennington, Chris Huston (www.engineco22.net), Brian Brush (www.fireservicewarrior.com), Rhett Fleitz (www.Firecritic.com) and several others (If I left you out I am sorry). All of those things have made even the most negative feedback seem non existent.

So I plan to continue to spread my brand and ideas of the fire service this year and beyond! Haters will always hate, so let them. Thanks to all those who read, comment, tweet and email me if it was not for those of you who have told me something I have written or said has made a difference for you then I would have quit years ago. Remember I am just like you, the Averagejake name was not chosen just because it sounded cool, or would look good on a t-shirt (but it would right?) It was chosen because I feel that I am just an Average guy, and that the dedication and love I have for this job is what every firefighter at their base should feel. I mess up, I make mistakes, I cheat on my fitness and my diet, but at the end of the day I always have the passion for the fire service and the desire to try every day to get better. Chasing perfection knowing it is unattainable, yet pushing for it every day. Again thanks to all those who keep me accountable, and keep pushing me to the best I can be.

As usual thanks for reading, spread the word, and STAY SAFE!

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