A New Approach to Setting Goals… Forget the Goals

Posted: January 21st, 2011

Photo by BazaarBizarreSF (Flickr)

Photo by BazaarBizarreSF (Flickr)

Another January rolls around and it’s the same thing over again. Reflect on the previous year, figure out what you accomplished and what you didn’t quite get to yet. Then set some goals and see where those lead to.

Pretty much the same for years on end.

Of course it’s important to have a yearly audit of your own business and find ways to improve. That, however, usually happens without even realizing it. Call this trial and error with a bit of growing up.

Then there comes the list of goals…¬† somewhat completed by the end of the year. Unless you can say you gave your absolute best effort into trying to achieve every last one of them, though, it would be hard to call it a success. More like somewhat of a success.

But, in my opinion, that translates into somewhat of a successful person, not exactly something to inspire to.

Well, my approach changed. Actually it’s been changed for the last several months and results, which carried over into the new year, have been surprising. So what is it?

Take care of yourself physically. Sounds simple but that requires change which isn’t so easy. But we are looking for change, are we not?

My take is that if you are sitting at your desk behind a computer for numerous hours on end then you need to be alert, motivated and ready for the long haul of a day. You can call it training for a daily freelancing marathon if you will.

One thing I realized is that, no matter how you think your own work is routine, if you are not at your best physically, then there is no way you can accomplish everything you want to in a day. Hence the somewhat success that results.

By no means am I a health expert but ask yourself a few questions.

Are you getting too little rest (or too much)? See what a full 7 – 8 hours of sleep a day has on your productivity. Not a minute more or less. Waking up and going to sleep at the same time every day also cures the oversleeping blues.

Are you getting enough exercise? I don’t need to repeat here anything you haven’t already heard before. Get out… break out that dusty gym card, walk around the neighborhood or bike to the next city. Whatever it takes to break a sweat and make a habit out of it.

Are you eating healthy? OK, I’d be a hypocrite if I said I still followed a completely healthy diet but at least try swapping some of that junk food for fruits and veggies. You’d be surprised how much of an effect unhealthy eating has on your energy levels throughout the day and the positive effect natural foods have on them.

These may all sound simple but it takes some time to really believe in them and make a part of your lifestyle. But if the end result means your productivity goes up and a few more of those New Year’s resolutions get done this year, isn’t it worth it?

My New Year’s Resolutions As a Freelancer

Posted: January 6th, 2010

Photo by Lucas Janin (Flickr)

Photo by Lucas Janin (Flickr)

It’s that time again; the beginning of the year where you reflect on the year before and see what could have been done better. For some reason this new year seems a little different though.

I don’t know whether it’s the new decade, which makes you reflect on that whole Y2K era, or the fact that decades all of a sudden fly by before you know it. Or maybe it’s the curiosity of what is in store for 2020 since we’ve come a long way in the past ten years.

Anyway, since New Year’s resolutions generally focus around self-improvement, more specifically work and your weight, I’m going to publish my own right here for all to see in hopes that I complete each and every one of them.

So without further ado.

I resolve to finally realize I can take a vacation tomorrow or the next day or even the next.

I resolve to stand up and scream “Hallelujah!” at the top of my lungs for each email I send in hopes my neighbors can convince me to cut back my time spent on it.

I resolve to stand up and scream “Homey don’t play that!” for every tweet I send in hopes that my neighbors force me into an insane asylum so I’ll have a good excuse to stay off of Twitter.

I resolve to take the high road and bite my tongue the next time a client decides to be a jerk and yell at me. That is, the little nub that is left of my tongue.

I resolve to save my receipts this time.

I resolve to open a help desk and charge for all the email and call support I give out to clients on a regular basis.

I resolve to to edit my contract and put in 72 pt red bold caps that UPDATES AND CHANGES WILL INCUR  ADDITIONAL CHARGES.

I resolve to work on a beach in Jamaica and say hi to Yuwanda.

I resolve to follow my own advice.

I resolve to brag to all my friends (and neighbors) and fully enjoy the fact that I don’t have a “real” job.