I don’t really subscribe to the idea of “a new year, a new me,” but I do like to use the change of year to refocus some of my goals. I’ve been trying the idea of a theme or word every year to focus on and it’s worked out pretty well. Last year, the “year of me” helped me turn down some opportunities that, while interesting, would’ve taken up more time than I was able to give.
This year, my word is “focus.” And more specifically, I want to focus on professional skill development. In the past few years, I’ve attended a writing conference, writing retreat, and some creative/social justice conferences that were not directly related to coffee.
When you’re self-employed, there isn’t someone else who can help create your professional development program. You kind of have to run that whole program yourself and it’s very easy to put it aside when there are things like making money and working with clients to focus on.
So I’d like to continue this trajectory of attending non-coffee events, as well as focusing on some other areas of skills to develop.
Another “focus” area will be a general re-assessment of my priorities. If I take on projects or think about projects, I want to make sure I follow through and finish them instead of letting them linger around in my head half-imagined.
This has already begun, but I’m taking on a photo challenge to kick my creativity back into gear. It’s a weekly one that I found online with some interesting prompts. This is being done with a support group of about 15 friends (mostly coffee, but some not). We’re sharing in an IG DM group, so I’m looking forward to seeing what everyone comes up with!
I’d also like to attend a photo event this year and/or sign up for a photography class. There are quite a few technical aspects that I’m missing out on (most of my work is done intuitively with the camera). My last technical class on photography was in high school and it was on black & white film!
The thing about writing is that when you’re writing so much, you don’t have the space to write creatively. I want to keep writing with my writing group, continue working on my short story, and perhaps even publish some personal essays. Writing is truly a labor of love for me and I’ve yet to find a way to make it sustainable enough for me to dedicate more time to it.
I keep up with all the new things on marketing (and share them in my newsletter). I think what I’d like to do this year in this area is to find a way to share this with my audience beyond my blog posts and newsletter. This just might be the year that my courses get released. 🙂
A whole new category just for my love of plants! This is not professional development but I’ve so enjoyed all of my plants, connecting with other plant lovers around the world, and recognizing the role they play in keeping up my mental health. I’d like to grow some more edible plants this year, too.
All the other goals I might have:
- Continue helping the BACC and area community thrive
- Continue building up my work systems. At this time of writing, I’m reviewing a year’s worth of my CRM, new accountant, and bookkeeping combo.
- Nurture my friendships, both old and new
And that’s it! I took two weeks off recently to recharge from my burnout and me writing this up is a good intro back into work. I’m feeling better and I’m hoping the above goals and my other ones help keep me inspired throughout the year.