As I wrapped up 2015 and meandered into 2016, I had a strong urge toward reflection and planning. While last year, I kept my goals simple1, this year I was inspired to revisit an idea a friend (Tasha over at Metacookbook) and I had attempted in previous years: Setting goals based on my upcoming birthday (so, in this case, 38 goals for my 38th year).
I started making notes about what I wanted 2016 to feel like and then got together with a group of friends to work through the #YearCompass workbook for some more directed and inspired reflection and imagining. This was a great idea that led me to think differently about 2015 and 2016 and brought me closer to these friends, who I hope to check in with over the next 12 months about our progress and challenges.
The first step I toward making my new year look different was to sign up for a creative challenge (#CBDRAWADAY: 31 Things to Draw with Lisa Congdon), one that takes me away from the keyboard and gets me doodling. Part of what was clear about 2015 was that most of my successes were professional ones; as a result, I had spent less time making, less time in the studio and following my other creative/DIY hobbies. I'm glad for those professional success, the new things I learned while coding in 2015, but I also appreciate what I learn from making things, creating collages, smooshing paint on canvas or drawing lines on paper. I don't want to give one up for the other.
Currently, I have 36 of 38 goals for the year set and then intention to add two more goals before I turn 38 at the end of March and to complete the entire list before I turn 39 in 2017 (yes, this means I'm giving myself 15 months instead of 12; call it a perk of getting older—it makes my list longer, but also makes me more flexible about these sort of things!).
You can view the full list of goals here, along with some description of how/why I chose these goals. Throughout the year, I'll be updating that page with my progress. A couple of my goals relate directly to coding and this blog, so I'll call them out here:
- Publish 50 blog posts
- Submit a talk to SassConf
I feel writing this blog and giving talks last year helped cement my understanding of things and challenged me to be more thoughtful about my choices—because the best posts and talks don't just say what you did, but why. I want to encourage more of that in myself, as well as giving back some of what I have learned and benefited from others who share their experiences. Specifically, I benefited from the expertise and community at SassConf in November and would like to plan to participate and attend again this year.
The remainder of my goals are not specific to coding, but I know even just the challenge of writing 50 blog posts will keep me inspired in that direction. Also, inspiration comes in funny places; even just the act of setting these goals led me to figure out how to import JSON data into my Middleman site, which is where my list of goals comes from (see here) and could, of course, be fodder for a future blog post. Who knows what else will inspire me this year!
May 2016 be full of inspiration for all of us.
As always, I encourage you to continue this conversation via Twitter. Let me know about your goals for 2016 (and if I can help you achieve them!) or prod me to update my goals regularly. :)
- In 2015, I focused on becoming someone who exercises regularly, so, in this instance, I mean that my goals were clear, not necessarily that they were easy to do. ↩