As a general rule, both multipotentialites and lifestyle designers love setting goals. Consequently, the end of a calendar year is often marked by an outpouring of mass goal-setting in the blogosphere and a flurry of excitement about the future.
I am, of course, no exception. I adore the process of turning grand ideas into actionable steps, especially since I know that I have it in me to actually take action.
So with that said, behold my goals for 2011.
Year’s Theme: Variety
Like a good little Scanner, the main focus of my goal-setting this year is to split up my time properly to include all of the activities that keep me feeling engaged and inspired. I want to embrace variety and limit the activities I dislike as much as possible.
This reminds me of what Leo Babauta says in his free ebook ‘Focus’, when he talks of not making a ‘to do list’. He recommends having a few projects going at a time, and when you wake up, just work on whichever interests you at the time. When you get bored, stop, and if you feel like it, work on another project.
This perfectly describes what I’m going for. It’s also an ideal model for those of us with a zillion different interests.
A Word on Finances
Now that my student loans have dried up (and will require repayment), I have to get serious about my finances. However, my belief is that with wise planning, financial stability can come about as a natural result of doing what you love.
In short, money is not the motivating force behind any of my goals. Some of these projects will produce an income and some will not, but they are all included primarily for the purpose of personal fulfillment, not for their potential to produce revenue.
I don’t mean to knock financially-driven goals. It’s just that for me personally, money alone isn’t a good motivator. If I’m not passionate about something, I will do a poor job no matter how great the payout.
1. Grow Puttylike
My first goal is to grow the community here at Puttylike. What matters most to me isn’t so much the amount of traffic on the site as the level of engagement.
I really want to turn Puttylike into a space where Scanners can come together and inspire each other- maybe even collaborate on projects! Judging by the emails and comments I’ve received, you guys are a mighty diverse and creative bunch. I’d love for you to be able to connect, not just with me, but with each other.
I even have thoughts of setting up a ‘project of the month’ section on the site, where a project from the Puttylike community is featured each month, along with a little interview.
None of this can happen, however, without sufficient traffic. Obviously you’re here- you found me (yey!). But I’d like to keep spreading the word, so that we can get more of our people to join in.
2. The Podcast
Since day one I’ve been planning on creating a podcast. I’d love to use some of my latent audio chops to create a theme song, maybe interview some interesting people and talk about big ideas.
A podcast is also a good way of reaching out to a whole new crowd since iTunes is essentially a search engine, and one with far less competition than Google.
3. Public Speaking
I’ve been getting more and more into the idea of speaking to groups. Plus one of my life dreams is to speak at a TED event. One little snag… For the better part of my life I’ve been completely terrified of public speaking.
Within the last year, I’ve really started pushing myself to overcome this fear. And guess what? I’ve found that speaking can actually be fun when you’re talking about something you’re passionate about. Well, it’s time to step it up a notch. I want to begin speaking regularly to groups.
Education Program for Kids
I’ve mentioned before that I’m very interested in working with children and high school students. I’d love to head into a school and give a little talk about unconventional possibilities, following your dreams and entrepreneurship. I’m also going to get involved with some meetup groups in Montreal and reach out to a few people I know who work at various organizations and might be in need of a speaker.
I like using the visual side of my brain by doing a bit of design work here and there. Running Puttylike satisfies this need to an extent, though the last few months have been so jam packed with finishing up law school, that I haven’t had time to do much design work.
I have been jotting down all my ideas though. Everything from ‘add more padding to the sides of the posts’ to ‘make it easier for people to share content’. I literally have 50 little tweaks that I’m planning on making to the site. This mini-revamp will probably happen over time. I think I will simply have my list around, and any time I’m in a design mood or need a break from writing, I’ll just pick something off the list and go for it.
Another thing I enjoy is working with people and helping them build their own brands online. A bit of web design work should satisfy this need. I have a few jobs lined up already, but if any of you are interested in a professional looking website, blog, or ebook design, feel free to get in touch.
5. Lifestyle/Business Coaching
Similarly, I would love to begin working with Scanners in a one-on-one setting, basically taking a personalized approach to the stuff I write about on the blog. I think it would be incredible to help people integrate their passions into their schedules, come up with revenue streams that play off their skills and interests and help them free up time so that they can embrace any new interests that arise.
I don’t currently have any coaching experience beyond just informally helping my friends out, so I will probably begin by offering some free sessions over Skype. I’ll be writing more about this in upcoming posts, but if you’re interested in being a guinea, shoot me an email and we’ll work something out.
I clearly enjoy writing and I plan on continuing with my regular Puttylike posts. I also want to branch out and do a bit of guest posting in 2011 as well as team up with other bloggers for some collaborative projects. I would also like to create another ebook, now that I’ve seen what a positive experience that can be.
I need to work on becoming a faster writer though. It takes me an embarrassingly long time to write a post. I’d like to get my time down to 1 hour per post without sacrificing quality.
Since publishing this post a few weeks back, several people have asked about the specifics- how exactly I plan on breaking into the television business and becoming a television writer.
Well, I have a few ideas about how this might be accomplished. But here is the one that I’m starting with:
Over the next couple of months, I will develop a series idea, write a pilot script, treatment and series bible. I have a friend and potential writing partner who contacted me and is interested in teaming up.
I/we will then pitch the idea to as many production companies (in Canada) and Networks (in the US) as we can get meetings with. This will not be easy, as most companies don’t accept meetings with unsolicited no-names. But I plan on utilizing all of my real world contacts, hustling my ass off on Twitter (which is a great way of connecting with practically anybody) and doing whatever I can to bypass the gate keepers.
The main point here isn’t to sell a TV show. It’s to go through the process, from development to pitch. I want to learn about the industry, start making connections and become a better screenwriter.
7. Other Lifestyle Goals
It’s easy as a blogger, to shut yourself away from the world. There are so many wonderful ideas being shared in the blogosphere that digital socializing can become almost addictive. I’ve made some incredible friends over the last few months and I think it would be amazing to hang out with them in person too.
I recently wrote about how living abroad made me crave community. What I didn’t say is that I have tentative plans to move to a certain Pacific Northwest city that shall remain nameless for now…
Okay, it’s Portland.
(Like that was hard to guess.)
I will be attending the World Domination Summit, where I will no doubt meet many of my blogger friends in person. I also decided to use the WDS as a catalyst for settling some place new. And Portland sounds perfect.
These plans were a large part of the reason I decided to move back home, instead of continuing to travel through the winter. The next five months are really about getting my life together and preparing for this giant leap.
The End… Sort of
Considering how often I come up with new ideas and change directions, I suppose it’s inevitable that some of these goals will change or evolve. But for now, this is the list.
I’ve shared these goals with you partly to be held publicly accountable for them. These pursuits should also give me plenty to blog about over the next twelve months.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart, for all the support this past year. You guys are a truly incredible bunch and I can’t wait to hear more from you in 2011!
Happy New Year Scanners!