2013 has flown by. In the past year, I have:
- Made it into the Chicagoist, AAA Living magazine, and the Zagat blog
- Took on a social media freelance opportunity
- Ran my first 5K
- Bought this domain name & launched the site
- Ate at many amazing restaurants, including Next (which I still have to write about)
- Traveled through Michigan in 12 coffee shops
- Was invited to Coffee Con as a VIP blogger
- Was recruited into my dream job
- Wrote my first guest blog post
What I have learned from all the above is that it helps to be nice. Genuinely caring about people, being helpful, and offering your expertise goes a long way.
I had previously set my 2013 resolution to be #codeyear, but I failed pretty miserably at that. It’s still a skill I’d love to tackle this year, but perhaps not at as much of an addictive pace as when I blew through all of Codecademy’s CSS course in one day.
There are many things that I’d like to accomplish in 2014. Some, I’ve compiled into a graphic. Others are too wordy to condense into one tiny circle. I’ve taken an unintended hiatus from my business, Caffentures, but I’d really like to continue doing something with it, even if it’s on the side and not exactly a coffee crawl. What I’ve learned is that you need some intense planning to launch a business and sometimes you have to realize that what you started with isn’t what you should keep doing. I’d also like to keep working on my photography skills and learn how to shoot in RAW format.
There are 9 items that I’ve pinpointed that I want to accomplish:
- Run an 8K: Yes, I still hate running, but I need goals in order to exercise and so I’m signing up for the Shamrock Shuffle in March
- Get organized: At home, I still have plastic furniture. I have a cardbox full of socks. It’s time to grow up and the first step is to do it with Apartment Therapy’s January Cure.
- Blog once a week: In order to get better at writing, I need to write more often.
- Get fit: In conjunction with goal #1, I recognize the importance of a healthy lifestyle and need to make fitness more of a priority in my life.
- Work on personal branding: Like last year, I want to continue working on my problem areas and keep building up my professional reputation.
- Travel overseas: I need to make travel a priority again. I’ve already started brainstorming destinations & looking into mileage cards.
- Contribute: Broadly, to contribute to an organization and/or community. For example, restart my volunteer work with the animal shelter.
- Focus on design: Through work, I have access to InDesign, Illustrator, and Photoshop. I need to spend time learning more things I can do with these programs.
- Eat wildly: Continue eating my way through the expensive restaurants of Chicago. But really, I’d like to keep expanding my palate.
And now, the coffee resolutions.
Last year, I tackled 10 coffee resolutions and the results aren’t all that bad! I succeeded in trying a new roaster every month (in the first half of the year, sometimes multiple new ones a month!). I hyper-organized my Feedly and am now sometimes tweeting news out before our industry online publications are putting it up (quite proud of this one). Never made it to New York, but if this year goes well, I’ll be at the SCAA Symposium, meeting new people & expanding my horizons.
One thing I do have to keep in check, however, is the tendency for me to overanalyze a person’s social media personality. When you’re using your real name on social media, there is no anonymity. It’s often better to take the high road than to get involved in an online attack. I don’t have a problem with being kindly corrected. What I often can not handle, is negativity, being taken advantage of, and the assumption that you are absolutely right. If you are so stuck in your ways, but you can’t logically and calmly defend your position, then I’m not really interested in an online “friendship.”
If someone is poisoning your feed, it’s best to mute, unfollow, or block.
This year, I’ve narrowed my scope down to four coffee resolutions:
There are gaps in my coffee education that I will freely admit to. I haven’t focused on water quality before, am very weak in the home espresso area, and my college chemistry learnings have been pushed to beyond the cobwebs of my mind. Videos & podcasts are my least favorite media mediums. I hate YouTube. I get bored with podcasts. I’d rather look at 20 beautiful infographics than listen to people talk to each other. However, I recognize that important information is being distilled through these mediums and my dislike for them is not going to stop me from learning. So my first steps to tackling goal #3 is to listen to portafilter.net episodes and watch past Symposium videos.
I’m really looking forward to this year!
I’d love to hear about your goals & coffee resolutions, feel free to comment or tweet them at me!