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Resolutions, Resolutions, Resolutions

I spent Christmas and New Year at my wife’s parents holiday cottage in France. It was very, very relaxing and gave me time to think about 2008 and my plans for 2009. I don’t normally write down resolutions, just keep them in my head, but this year I thought I’d jot them down and see how they pan out. I’ve listed them as things I’m going to stop doing, and things I’m going to start doing or do more of.

I’m going to stop doing:

  • Twitter, and specifically watching tweets. I have realised I waste an enormous amount of time watching what other people are getting up too. I know it’s meant to be an ambient stream that you can follow if you choose, but inevitably you watch all the time because you don’t want to miss anything. I managed without it before so I can manage without it again.
  • BBC specific hacks. As a BBC employee I seem to spent a awful lot of my spare time hacking away at things that are BBC based or involve a BBC service of one kind or another. This is in part due to the fact that I know the terrain. These are normally well received and supported by close friends, but the amount of hoops I have to jump through and politics I have to dodge, and kid-gloves I have to wear as a BBC employee, aren’t actually worth the effort I put in, so apart from a couple of things I am working on at the moment, I have scrubbed my to-do list and have only left non BBC stuff on there.
  • Read so many RSS feeds. I currently have 112 subscribed feeds in Google Reader. Do I really need this many? I don’t think so.
  • Quit trying to learn everything, and be more selective. I have a tendency to want to learn everything. If something new in software comes out, I need to know it. If something gets written in a language I don’t know, then I want to learn that language. It means that my mind never gets a chance to relax, and by the end of the year I feel fried. This year off the top of my head I have learnt/improved my knowledge of: Ruby, Rails, JavaScript, Apache, mod_rewrite, mod_proxy, Git, Unix, Awk, Vim, PHP, Objective C, Cocoa, HTTP, REST, Perl, Python, Django, Merb, Google App Engine, iCalendar, ActionScript, QRCodes, Camping, Shoes FacebookApps, iPhone web Apps, ActiveMQ, jQuery, Jabber, XMPP, Erlang, Ejabberd, Capistrano, RPMs, vHosts, Passenger, Processing, DaemonTools, God, Taconite, VMWare, CentOS… etc. I think this proves my point. Some of this was needed for my job, but everything else was just extra load.

I’m going to start/continue doing:

  • Running. I did a fair bit of running in 2008 (I changed computers so this site only has some data), but it petered off towards the end of the year. This year I’d like to do more races and improve my speed over long distances
  • Spend more time outside. I do actually spend quite a lot of time outside, but this year I think I like to do more camping, walking, visiting.
  • Learning to relax so I can get a good nights sleep. In France I slept like a baby, 10 hours with no waking. This is something I can only dream of at home and is my goal. I’m not 100% sure how I’m going to acheive this one (any pointers greatly welcome) but I’m hoping by removing some of the stop doing’s will help.

I’ll be interested to see how many of these I can keep by the end of the year, but here’s hoping.

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Hurrah, there has been one response to this post.

  1. Rebekah Ford

    Well said old bean! I think I’m going to write my own resolution list online and try and stick to it too. Yours is quite wise.


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