Last year was my first serious attempt at setting goals at the outset with structure and plan to hold myself accountable to each one throughout the course of the year. “Goal orientation” is not my native approach to motivation, but being able to quantify results in data-driven terms (for good or ill) is something I’m compelled by. If, for example, I can’t track a run with Strava, I don’t even want to do it. The inanity of this compulsion is not lost on me, but the way I think about it is that if any strategy keeps you going (even a superficial one), it works. It’s all about the result after all.
In the spirit of 2019, here are the goals for this year. The learnings from last year’s results showed me some ways I want to iterate on certain of the areas, not necessarily to perform better against a metric, but to get deeper meaning out of healthy habits.
- Run 650 miles — When I set 500 as a target for 2019, I thought it’d be all I could do to hit that. I ended up landing on 615. With consistent effort (it requires an average 12.5 miles per week) I can definitely hit 650. Feels incremental, slightly uncomfortable, but attainable.
- Run 2 half marathons — Did one last year, will shoot for one in the spring and one in the fall or winter.
- Deeper meditation — In my takeaways on this from last year, I mentioned the lack of depth with short, frequent sessions. This year I’m going to try doing 2 sessions of at least 30 minutes per week. I’ve read from multiple sources that anything shorter than about that length doesn’t get you all the way to the “present” state that mindfulness techniques are targeting. Half an hour will feel like a long time, but only twice a week should be fine.
- Begin strength training — Shooting for 3 days per week. My plan is to get a setup in the garage to do workouts pre- or post-evening run.
Reading, Learning, and Writing
- Read 30 books — I’m lowering the number this year, but have no plans to read less. I want to prioritize more long-form, deeper books that I’ve got on the shelf.
- Continue daily posts — I’d also like to force myself to write posts on 1 book per month.
- Study finance — With a half-decade of being heavily involved in the business end of a SaaS company, I’ve gotten a “crash MBA” in budgets, finance, and tons more. I plan to spend more time learning about markets, investing, and economics to have a broader understanding.
- Host Fulcrum Live 2020 — The name of the event is TBD, but we’ll be doing another iteration of our user conference that we last did (with success!) in 2017.
- Grow the team — Much of my time this year will be focused on team growth. No hard targets yet, but we have some things in the works that’ll be expanding our team.
- Share more posts from the blog — When I started the daily posting habit in fall of 2018, I made the intentional decision to just put posts out there and see what would happen organically. No expected plan to drive traffic, just post and leave it be — personal journal out in public. One of my main reasons for doing that was to reduce the friction in getting things out there. The idea that every post was getting tweeted or shared could’ve made me overly attentive to perfection and polishing, something I wanted to avoid not only because it’d take longer on net for each new post, but it could make me hesitant about certain things. This year I’ll plan to share more widely the content for feedback and discussion.
- Take a few local weekend trips with the family — There’s a shortlist of places in driving distance I’d like to take the kids to, like on long weekends.
I’m updating my tracker to include some other things. I’ll be back on this topic with a post-January check-in on my progress.