I have never been one to make New Year’s resolutions. But last year I did something different after learning about what Chris Brogan does.
I chose three words — Passion, Challenge, Connect — and used them as a way to frame my year. I am doing the same this year.
Follow “it,” whatever “it” is: Dreams, opportunities, success. Don’t let them slip away, never to come back. Keep on track, and do it consistently.
That is pursuit, and that is what I need.
Sometimes, in my personal life, I start a task or project and then I don’t finish it. I get disinterested and move onto the next task or project. I want that behavior to stop.
I want to pick up a task or project and see it to fruition. I want to revel in the feeling of a job done, and done well.
And I also want to demonstrate my commitment to being a better husband, a better friend, a better person.
This word has a couple of meanings, but the one that I’m most interested in is create content. I want to get back to blogging regularly here and at my food blog.
I also want to create works of fiction. In the past, fiction writing has been a very sporadic activity. Now I want it to be something I put more effort into, something that I set aside dedicated time for, even if it’s only every other week.
The same goes for other types of content I want to create: Paintings (acrylics and non), social (Storify) and more.
Bring it, 2013
If I can harness pursuit, commitment and create this year, I know it will be a very good year.
What are your three words for this year?
A couple of years ago, I got back into cycling.
In fact, it was the Tour de France that hooked me back (and I wrote a blog post about that).
But this year I have taken my cycling passion to new heights.
My goal for 2012 was to bike 1,000 miles on the open road. As of today, I have 1,049.
Yes, I’ve surpassed my goal — and there are still four months left in this year. It’s time to really crush it.
(Last year, in comparison, I had about 660.)
New top speed
Although I haven’t focused a ton on speed intervals, I have mapped out a few short courses near my home and focused on speed.
One course is just about 9.5 miles long, and I rode it twice last week. Each time I got a new fastest time — 19.2 mph the first time and 19.3 mph the second time.
One more thing that I’d like to accomplish — I’m waiting for the beginning of fall and for slightly cooler temperatures — is a century ride, or 100 miles in a day.
I had planned out a day in early May to do it and, as luck would have it, severe thunderstorms came that day instead. So I’ve rescheduled for the fall sometime.
Cycling in 2013
I want to successfully complete the triple crown and claim my jersey, which means I’ll have to bike 50K-100K-100K at the least. (In miles, that’s about 31-62-62.)
Here’s to achieving my goals!
What goals have you crossed off your list this year?
I just finished reading “The (Honest) Truth about Dishonesty: How We Lie to Everyone — Especially Ourselves” by Dan Ariely.
The book was quite good in the level of detail the author included about experiments and how the results of those experiments show that people lie to other people and to themselves more frequently than they might think.
But the takeaway of one study was one that I found intriguing:
These results suggest that once someone (or some organization) does us a favor, we become partial to anything related to the giving party — and that the magnitude of this bias increases as the magnitude of the initial favor (in this case the amount of payment) increases.”
It is interesting that I was reading this book at just about the same time that I was writing the draft for my Cabot Cheese social media case study post in which Cabot sent me free cheese. I ended up using the cheese as ingredients for recipes posted on my food blog and then posted about my overall experience with the brand here.
It’s not too surprising, I think, to read the above quote.
Dishonest with yourself
The dishonesty part came about because, in the experiment, people underwent fMRI scans while seeing a painting and a logo of a gallery. Each participant was informed that one gallery provided payment for the experiment.
Participants were asked to like or dislike paintings, and the results showed they liked ones from the gallery that paid for the experiment. But when asked, participants said the logo had no effect on their choice.
Clearly, self-deception was at work.
It should not be a shock that when a brand does something nice or offers a free product or service that there will be a little bit of loyalty. The loyalty does not have to last a lifetime, either.
I recognize that I’ve had these types of feelings toward other brands when they have been kind or done nice things to me. I tell myself that I feel no need to reciprocate the brand’s kind gestures.
But, really, there’s nothing wrong with reciprocating, so long as you’re honest with yourself.
How willing are you to reciprocate exposure or other gestures to brands when they do so to you?
Goals. We all have them. It’s usually just a matter of finding the time to complete them. But what happens when time and goals intersect?
Time takes precedence
When time takes precedence, your goals go unfulfilled.
Maybe that means it’s time to re-evaluate your goals. Break them down into smaller goals or scratch those goals altogether. Maybe it means that you need to re-prioritize your goals.
Whatever the case, it’s time to evaluate.
Goals take precedence
You’re completing your goals — that’s great — but at what cost? Time goes by the wayside, which means suffering through not enough leisure time.
It’s time to ponder your plate and whether there’s too much on it. Maybe it’s time for a break or time to move some goals to the backburner.
Worst course of action
What’s the worst thing you can do? Fail to realize how your time and your goals intersect. If you don’t, you won’t be able to evaluate how you are performing your goals and how it’s affecting your time.
Find your priorities
This is the conundrum I have faced in recent weeks: The intersection of time and goals.
My main two goals are blogging here weekly on Mondays and riding 1,000 road cycling miles this year. My cycling goal has taken precedence over time, which has taken precedence over my blogging goal.
But I’m passionate about blogging, and that’s why I’m re-evaluating how time and my goals intersect. I’m hoping my goals take more precedence in the near future.
Patience is a virtue.
Or so I’ve been told all my life. But sometimes, well, it isn’t. Sometimes patience is overrated.
There are some situations where you need to be patient and let events unfold.
But then there are other times, times when you could be patient and let things happen. Or you could step up, take control and let patience wait for you.
The key is to know the difference, to know which situation you are in. Should you wait or should you take the reins?