This year, I had a LOT of resolutions and goals. Since we’re about a quarter though the year already (how did that happen so fast?), I thought it might be a good time to circle back and see how things are progressing.
Checking in on my goals each quarter is a great way for me to stay accountable and to decide if I have any goals that need to be left behind because they just aren’t a priority for me anymore. I want to focus my energy on what matters most to me, so I’m not afraid to re-prioritize as needed.
I’m happy to keep offering quarterly updates throughout the year to keep myself accountable and so that you can check in on your own goals as well.
So let’s get started.
Resolution #1: More Art
For this resolution, I committed to:
- Reading more poetry. I wanted to read to 25 collections this year and so far I’ve read 9 collections. This mini-goal is on track.
- Listening to more creatives who are podcasting. In particular, I set the goal of listening to more episodes of the Write Now podcast, the Being Boss podcast, the Accidental Creative podcast, Elise Gets Crafty, and starting Tara Gentile’s podcast. So far, I’ve caught up on many Being Boss episodes, but haven’t made much progress on the other shows. I’m going to move them up in my podcast queue so they are more visible to me when I open the app. I’m also going to start using my plane travel this year to catch up on these episodes.
- Visiting a local art museum. This hasn’t happened yet, but I did some research and found the art museum in Portland is free on Thursdays, so I might play hooky one day and head up there.
- Getting back to reading novels. I committed to reading one novel a month and two classics in 2017. So far, I’ve read one novel a month (and 2 in March), so I’m on track. (I’ve also read 6 non-fiction books — check out the list of 2017 books on Good Reads.) No classics yet, but I’m still deciding which ones I want to choose. Reading novels has been lovely — sometimes you don’t realize how much you miss something until you bring it back into your life.
Overall score: On track for the most part.
Resolution #2: Do What I Said I Would… And More
For this resolution, I committed to creating:
- My third book. Although this project has been resting, I’m recommitting to the book this month and can’t wait to make more progress.
- Podcast episodes. I’ve been producing three podcast episodes each week for two shows (this one and this one) since the start of 2017 and I’m about to launch a new show, so this goal is definitely on track.
- Weekly essays. Readers of my email newsletter have received 12 essays so far — one each week — so this goal is also on track. I’ve also gotten some great reader responses to these essays and seen some past essays go viral on social media.
- Two edited collections. Right now, both of these projects are on track. First drafts from contributors have come in and received feedback and the next round of drafts are due in the next couple of months.
- A new academic book series. I’ve signed the contract for this series and we’re working on the first three books to be released in 2018 — this project is going to be super fun and I’m glad to say that it’s on track because of three fabulous authors.
- Data. I’m in the process of designing a few new research projects with all of the IRB details that entails. I’m happy to say that this goal is also on track.
I also had some stuff that mentioned creating without outside commitments holding me to it:
- A top-secret third book promotional project. This is my new podcast and it launches this month! I’m very excited to share this project that’s been months in the making and to see how listeners respond.
- A course on academic book promotion. This is a project that definitely needs my attention and I’m hoping to turn my attention to it in May. I want to get a bit more done with my book project before I give time to this project, but I’m still committed to it.
I also recently submitted a proposal for another book project with a couple co-authors. This wasn’t planned for 2017, so it’s icing on the cake.
Overall score: On track.
Resolution #3: Focus on Growth
Here are some of the areas that I wanted to focus on cultivating growth in 2017:
- Building community through podcasting. I committed to establishing Facebook groups for both of my podcast communities and, so far, this hasn’t happened. I’m still struggling a bit to get on the Facebook bandwagon, so I’ve been procrastinating this. However, the other social media accounts for the shows have been doing well this year and have consistent growth.
- Refining my brand. I committed to spending some time thinking about how to simplify and narrow my brand so that I can get clear on what opportunities I want to participate in down the road. I have definitely done this (I wrote about it here) and started narrowing my offerings. I also created a new professional website to separately promote my services in the first quarter of this year and got some new head shots done.
- Growing my digital following. This year, I wanted to continue to cultivate digital relationships and do some research on email lists. I had previously purchased a course on email lists that I’m slowly working my way through and hope to finish this year. I’ve also seen growth in followers across all my social media platforms, so I’m happy with the progress on this goal.
- Developing stronger habits. I challenged myself to hit 10k steps, to drink 64 oz of water, and to eat a salad or drink a green smoothie every day this year. So far, I’ve done all three every day so far in 2017. I’m incredibly proud of meeting these goals and have seen a difference in my energy levels and wellness as a result.
Overall score: On track for the most part.
Resolution #4: Giving Back
Here are some of the areas that I hoped to be giving back more in 2017:
- More compliments and affirmation. I committed to at least two hand-written notes each month in 2017 and so far I’ve written 5 handwritten notes, but all in one month. I’ll work on this one. I’ve also been trying to do more verbal affirmations, particularly for my staff and colleagues at work, and think I’m making good progress there.
- More time and space. So far this year, I’ve been carving out time and space for a new employee and I’ve also made time to connect with colleagues at a range of conferences this year. I think this mini-goal is going well.
- More attention. This year, I committed to closing down my email during meetings in my office, turning my phone face-down during meetings outside of my office so I can’t see notifications, and not looking at a screen (phone, computer, or otherwise) when I’m supposed to be talking with someone in my office or in my home. The first two are going pretty well, but the third goal is not going well. I’m still working on this one and it’s really hard. My partner has been doing an excellent job about calling me out about this, so I’m becoming more aware of when I tend to be distracted.
- More intentionality. I committed to thinking carefully about what I can do to make a person feel valued or for a project to have the most successful outcome possible. I also committed to reading a book on emotional intelligence this year to help myself meet this goal. Goal one is a work in progress. For the second goal, I bought the book I want to read, so it’s ready for me when I can carve out the time.
Overall score: Making progress, but some clear areas where I can re-commit.
Resolution #5: My 2017 Challenge Goal
My 2017 challenge goal was to work on my posture. I committed to exploring the following:
- Yoga. I downloaded a great yoga app to my iPad and started the year strong with 1–2 sessions each week. Then I fell off the wagon. I love the app and the fact that I can travel with it, so I’m going to try and get back to this at least 1–2 times per week.
- Stretching. I was going to try and pair stretching with podcast listening, but I’ve been spending my energy trying to get my 10k steps each day. This is an area where I haven’t been able to focus much at all, so I might combine this with the yoga goal above.
- Weight training. I have completely failed in this area. I have done one or two weight training exercises this year using an an app to help me, but I have not done this consistently. I’m going back to the app to see if I can get back on track one to two times per week.
- Standing more. This is another area where I need to do more work (are you sensing a pattern?) — I’ve been better about getting out for walks during the day then I’ve been at standing regularly. I’m counting that as a win as well as the more frequent bathroom trips I take because of all the water I’m drinking…
- Running more. Oh, running. I have not been prioritizing running this year at all. Mostly, I’ve been focusing more on walking to get my 10k steps in each day. I do believe that something is better than nothing, but I see such great results from running for my physical and mental health that I do need to make this more of a priority.
Overall score: Mostly a fail. I really need to get back to working on many of the areas above to make sure I’m actively working on improving my posture. I knew that this goal would be the hardest and, sure enough, it is.
So that’s my update — I’d love to hear about how your resolutions or goals are going so far this year.
To think on:
- How are your goals for the year coming along?
- Do you need to adjust or make any changes to help yourself be more successful?
- What’s your biggest success so far this year?