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While 2010 was a good year (as you can see by the “2010 Top 10” post from last week), it wasn’t quite the year I was looking for when it started. These were the goals of 2010:

  • More writing success: I did publish again this year and have a story that will get sent out within the first week of 2011. But I didn’t get far with Neutral Zone revisions at all. Other areas of life took time away from this.
  • Learn to dance: Time ate this too. I thought about it periodically, but it didn’t happen.
  • Job: I had two goals here: the job needed to stay challenging and educational and I needed to use all my vacation days. I did learn some legal nuances this year, which is good. However, while I work with some excellent people (both coworkers and clients) and produced good work, I didn’t grow much in the job this year. Meanwhile, I did use my vacation days efficiently and was glad about that.
  • Volunteering: This took a right turn. In the spring I stepped out of volunteering with Ali Forney because I didn’t feel I was being very effective there between time constraints and being away for multiple weeks in the spring.
  • Fitness: I was fit enough to do Braking the Cycle, but I’d still like to look fitter. I’m getting older, so staying fit is important.

I’m taking a new tactic in 2011. It’s not about setting up a string of goals, it’s about being deliberate with how I spend my time. One of the things I’ve learned from reading Chris Guillebeau this year is that you should ask “Why am I doing this?”

That’s a major theme in 2011 for me. For things that don’t have a good answer, there’s going to be a hard look at why I am doing it.

Working on legacy is also important in 2011. What can I do, that no one else can, to make the world a better place? I’ve written a few times in late 2010 about my quest to figure this out. It’d be exciting to discover something Will and I can do together in this area, but if it’s a particular endeavor that would be mine alone to tackle I know he’d support me in it. Even if I don’t find the exact thing, I need to give of myself more, and in relevant ways, in 2011.

There are a few things that are a given in 2011:

  • I will keep going with writing projects and I suspect getting through Neutral Zone will be a big part of that. However, I’m not going to ignore my brain if it needs to have a creative burst with other writing activities.
  • Braking the Cycle, round 2, coming up in September. Now that I’ve done it once I think I know how to train more efficiently for it and I’m certainly going to be looking to raise more money in ’11.
  • I’ll keep playing hockey too. In late 2010 I cut back on the amount as I wanted to put some time towards other projects. That may happen again this year, but I’ll definitely be on the ice for the stuff that I truly love — Ronnie’s Ice, the Tigers and the Chelsea Challenge.

I’m hopeful that asking “why” in 2011 while help me manage my time better, allow me to focus on things that are truly important to me and make me open to whatever the year wants to put in front of me to consider.