… make a plan to get my collective crap together.
Some days, I’m not sure who I respect more – folks who make elaborate plans for the New Year and freely share their goals or those who keep quiet, make a few simple goals for the year and stick to them.
I have a few goals, personal and professional, that I need to keep track of.
One goal I will follow through on, and this is for both professional and personal reasons. I have never been a Microsoft MVP. I have been nominated, but have never followed through on completing the required documentation to achieve such a goal. I was nominated by a good friend and professional colleague, Enrique Lima. I was flattered that he would go to the trouble of nominating me. What I had always assumed was that Enrique had been a multiple recipient of the MVP honor from Microsoft, given his contributions to the Microsoft Certified Trainer community and the IT community as a whole. Little did I know that while we both were attending the MCT Summit in Bellevue, Washington, Enrique would be awarded his first such recognition. My mind was a bit blown. His first? Say it isn’t so. When Enrique spoke of finally receiving his first MVP, tears welled up in his eyes. It moved me.
Enrique was taken from us at a terribly young age, some time in the night following the last day of the conference. This punched us all in the gut. I owe it to Enrique’s memory to complete the required application, as well as bump up my game as a Microsoft Certified Trainer and IT professional. I’m going to hear his voice in the back of my head, his confidence, his drive, and let that push me this year and in the years to follow.
Another area related to the passing of my friend… I need to focus on my health this year and actually stick to the plan to lose a pound a week. Drink more water, eat smarter, smaller portions. I’m going to wear my pedometer and get back to ten thousand steps a day. Enrique was a wonder when it came to staying on his feet. I need to get off my ass and do more while standing. A few of my friends have gone to walking and/or standing desks. Maybe that’s the direction I need to go. One area that I know will help will be getting back out to the golf course. Somehow I jacked up my right shoulder last spring, and it seems to be getting back where it needs to be just in time for spring golf planning. I have access to some pretty decent golf courses through “The Club“, so I’m optimistic that I’ll have ample chances to get out and lose a few dozen golf balls this year. Even when I use a golf cart, you can get ten thousand steps in easy enough if you simple leave the cart on the cart path and walk to your ball.
I’m going to read more deliberately. I’ve been pretty good about seeking a balance between technical and entertainment reading in the past, with a few motivational books here and there, some technical, with a thick coating of fantasy and science fiction. I even try to spread out my selections in the SF/F genres, with healthy doses of military science fiction, hard sci-fi, fun sci-fi, epic fantasy and urban fantasy. The reading challenge posted on this site does a nice job mixing it up. It’s not outrageous, but it can be challenging and achievable. I’m currently rereading “The Sleeping Dragon” by Joel C. Rosenberg, and am only a few chapters in, so that knocks one off of the list. Let me ponder this for a moment…
- A book published this year… might need to wait on that one for awhile.
- A book you can finish in a day… there are some short motivational books that are easy to get through, especially if you use Dynamic Reader, Sprint Reader for Chrome or Spritzlet to bone up on your speed reading chops.
- A book you’ve been meaning to read… in a recent chat, a friend mentioned Glen Cook’s “The Black Company” series. I’ve had the first book on my bookshelf to the right of my nightstand gathering dust for too long (but I’m going to still try to find the audiobook first). Another option would be the Foundation series. I’ve had that title on the back burner too long.
- A book recomended by your local librarian or bookseller… this one might be a little more complicated. I wonder if I can swap out one of the principals over at the Gunn Center for the Study of Science Fiction on KU’s campus. Chris McKitterick is about as knowledgeable a person one will find regarding sci-fi.
- A book you should have read in school… I need to think about this one a little more.
- A book chosen for you by your spouse, partner, sibling, child, or BFF… my spouse doesn’t read fiction, but I have a couple of kids that regularly have their noses buried in a new title. I will consult with them accordingly.
- A book published before you were born… I might have to crawl back into the annals for this one. Old Asimov? Clarke? Heinlein? Maybe an early Hugo or Nebula award winner? Or something from Robert E. Howard or H.P. Lovecraft. This definitely has some possibilities.
- A book that was banned at some point… There are several sites that provide info on SFF titles that have been banned at some point. WorldsWithoutEnd has a nice list, and io9 has a short list of 10 banned books most people have heard of. Interesting… I’ve read about half of the books on the io9 list. Maybe I’m more subversive than I previously thought.
- A book you previously abandoned… boy, there are plenty of titles on this list. Ugh.
- A book you own but have never read… see immediately above. I have no idea how many books I’ve purchased on impulse thinking I’d dive right in and digest a title.
- A book that intimidates you… something ridiculously thick perhaps? Maybe a Terry Goodkind or a Brandon Sanderson epic? (No, I’m not going to try to pack the entire Wheel of Time series into one year)
- A book you’ve read at least once… covered. I’ve done that a few times of late, as I just finished “Dune” and “Dune Messiah” in the last month or two.
That’s a start. I think it’s interesting how a person can document one set of resolutions while thinking about another set of resolutions. More to come.
More to come.