Goals for 2014

* Blog a little more (not going well so far)

I wanted to blog a lot in 2013. I didn’t get there. I produced an average of one post every two weeks when averaged out across the year. In reality that looks like a lot less than one post every two weeks because there are a lot of gaps.

I did have a couple blog posts this year that have been reasonably popular in search engines, and I’d like to continue on that track. I’d also like to move the blog to its own domain.

My goal for 2014 is to produce two blog posts per month at a minimum. This keeps me on track for the same amount of content produced as in 2013, but on a more regular schedule. This is in part to increase my personal brand, and also to increase the amount of writing I’m doing and improve the quality of that writing.

* Read a book a month

In 2013, I read some fiction books, but that’s not really what I’m talking about here. I did finish Code Complete 2 by Steve McConnell and that was a wonderful book. I also started a lot of non-fiction professional development books that I didn’t finish. In fact, I’m collecting a nice little library of these books.

These year I want to finish some of them. First on my list is The Pragmatic Programmer by Andrew Hunt and David Thomas. I’m about halfway through it currently and it’s an excellent book. After that I plan on finishing Peopleware Third Edition by Tom DeMarco and Timothy Lister, what I’ve read of this book so far is excellent.

I’ve got about six books lined up after these ones, but I’m making sure to focus my attention in order to actually get these finished.

I’m also halfway through The Count of Monte Cristo, but again, not really talking about fiction books here.

* Finish something

I finish a lot of stuff at the office. This is referring to personal projects. In 2013, I’ve finished two personal projects. One was not developed as completely as I want it to be. The second is publicly available but has never really been “launched.” The main reason for this is that the design isn’t where I want it.

So this year I would like to launch another personal project. One of the key things I’m going to be developing in 2014 are my front end design skills. This will allow me to be happier — if never completely happy — with my sites and apps so that I don’t feel so bad about actually launching them.

* Give some more talks

I don’t know how much I really learned in high school.

I didn’t take away good study habits. I didn’t learn how to be a good person. I didn’t learn how to socialize. All of the computer knowledge I gained during that time was gained myself, not through classes.

But I know that I learned one thing that will stick with me forever – public speaking. I had a teacher for grade 11 English, Mr. Doddington. Now, he was an ecentric man, but he was also passionate about speaking. He had everyone in the class constantly giving speeches to the room. During these speeches everyone in the class was encouraged to keep track of how many “um”s, “uh”s, and “like”s you uttered. Everyone was forced to continue until they no longer stuttered these words during their speeches.

Today I can’t help myself. Everytime someone gives a talk I’m wired to listen for these moments, almost everyone has them and it drives me crazy. Mr. Doddington gave me a pretty awesome gift in high school — the ability to talk without stuttering. I’ll forever be grateful.

I gave five presentations to the engineering department at the office in 2013. In 2014, I’d like to make further use of this gift by continuing to present internally and also by giving one talk externally.

* More responsibility at work

This one is self-explanatory. I’m really happy working where I am now. I’m happy with the work. I’m happy with my coworkers. I’m even happy with my manager.

I’d like to continue on my career path and take on more responsibility this year. I’ve never been very happy staying stagnant somewhere, and if I remain stagnant where I am then my personal history has shown that I’ll be getting the itch for something new by 2015.

* Passive income

This is another self-explanatory item.

I’ve got a family at home and I’d like to bring in more revenue in 2014. I’m also not keen on working 100 hours a week. So it’s time to build some stuff that brings in passive income to bolster my finances. This also ties in with “Finish something”.

Well, there are my goals for 2014. At the end of the year I’ll do a report card and see how I measure up. Regardless, I think it’s going to be a pretty great year.

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