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Goal Setting

January 9, 2009

I feel very behind in the blogging world. I opened my Google reader to find over 200 new items and I haven’t posted much in at least a week. The biggest thing I’ve failed to do is set my goals as part of the Blog Improvement Project.

After only a little bit of thought, I’ve decided my goals are going to be:

  • Put more thought into my posts. I tend to just write and minimally edit, rather than actually craft something that will be fully worth reading. In practice, this will mean writing posts in advance and coming back to edit them and improve them before I actually post.
  • Set aside more time to read. I always feel like I don’t have time to read. Growing up, my brother and I learned how to watch tv as if we were just stopping through or pausing on our way to do something more productive (my parents could always find jobs for us if we needed something to do), but its impossible to do that when reading. I always feel like sitting and reading is a luxury for when I’ve done everything else I need to do, but I want to set aside time in my day to read without feeling guilty.
  • Really read (instead of browse) other blogs and respond to at least one per day. In other words, participate more. Dewey made this easy and I’m really missing her unifying presence, but this year I am going to make more of an effort.
  • Blog even when I don’t have a book to talk about. This blog is about books, and I want to stay focused on that, but I can also include a little bit more about my life as well. I’m approaching a turning point in my life that, to be truly honest, has me terrified. To be more active, I will do memes and create a schedule of posting to talk about my reading as I go, instead of only when I’m done.
  • I will read with an index card for a bookmark. I did this by accident and discovered how useful it is! I hate writing in my books and I never read in the same place, so having a notebook isn’t all that helpful either. Using my bookmark to take notes seems so obvious, but I didn’t think of it until just recently.

Any other suggestions? I still feel like a blogging baby so I love advice to improve my blog. I don’t really write for other people or to hear myself talk, but I also don’t want to be talking to myself on here! I love the whole blogging community, which in the past five months has been a truly surprising aspect of blogging I was not prepared for.

I also need to decide whether I want to share this blog with my family and friends. Right now, they don’t know I have this site and I don’t know what is holding me back from telling them. I don’t hide when I’m posting or doing something for the blog, but I also have not pointed it out to them. What do you think? Do you share your blog with family and friends or do you keep your two worlds separate?

14 Comments leave one →
  1. January 9, 2009 6:44 pm

    I think your goals are really interesting, especially the one about the index card.
    I often write short notes on my laptop when I start reading and a few ones when I´m halfway (and usually I don´t want to reveal much about the second half anyway), but I can see that your way is more handy 🙂

    • January 12, 2009 7:45 am

      Thanks so much Dorte! My laptop never seems to be around when I really need it!

      Lu: That sounds like a good way to have things, although my boy laughed when he saw my page (not knowing it’s me) and would probably have trouble taking it seriously. My parents would be concerned that I’m spending even MORE time on books! Hah! At least those are my fears, which could easily be unfounded. Who knows?
      Thanks for the support!

      Serendipity: Exactly! The worst possible thing when you’re curled up with a good book is having to uncurl, right?

  2. January 9, 2009 7:24 pm

    The notecard bookmark idea is great! I try to keep the two worlds separate, but my boy knows about it and might check it regularly (I’m not sure, haha) and my family knows I have one and that it’s about books, but not much else.

    Good goals!
    – Lu

  3. January 10, 2009 4:18 am

    The index card for a bookmark is a fantastic idea. Sometimes I can only be a couple of feet away from a notebook and yet because I’m so comfortable and immersed in my book I can’t be bothered to get up and get it and then as a result end up forgetting the idea / point / note etc. Doing this would solve that problem

  4. January 10, 2009 10:38 am

    Your blog is great. I have an upcoming event that has me a little terrified, too and may we both survive and be better for it (mine is that I’m about to take a new job…) Best to you, great goals, Happy Weekly Geek, too!)

  5. January 10, 2009 4:38 pm

    Great idea about using an index card for a bookmark. I usually keep a notebook with me at all times, but you’re right… the index card is more convenient. I too never thought about taking notes while I need to jot down ideas for my reviews. This is one of my goals also.

  6. January 11, 2009 12:36 am

    Great goals! I have a note pad by my bed and use it often.

  7. January 11, 2009 12:54 pm

    You have some great goals and I will look forward to see how you progress through the year. My own blog was, initially, meant as a blog ONLY with book reviews. I pretty soon realized that I simply do not read books enough to have a review every second day. So I have begun blogging about book-related things as well. And a tiny bit of personal stuff, but not much. But I like doing all the book-related posts as well.

  8. January 11, 2009 7:10 pm

    As for telling friends and family? I find they just don’t get it. They don’t stop by very often… I actually have a secret anonymous blog and my book blog which I tell EVERYONE.

    • January 12, 2009 8:49 am

      Thanks you Care! Mine is that I need to find a job! Good luck in your new job, substitute teaching right? You’ll be great at that!

  9. January 11, 2009 11:41 pm

    I really like the idea about using an index card as a bookmark, too! Normally I just stick a post-it note in the front and use that to take notes (or a text file on my computer), but I think from now on I’ll use an index card. 😀

    I’ve told my parents and a few of my work friends that I have a book blog (and given them the address), but when I mention something regarding my blog to casual cquaintances normally I just say something like “I’m reviewing this book for my blog” and leave it at that. I figure if they want to know more they’ll ask me.

  10. January 12, 2009 9:54 am

    Thank you for visiting my blog! You have some very good goals too. I like the idea of using an index card as a bookmark; I should try it as well.

  11. January 18, 2009 5:41 pm

    I need to put more time in my posts too — when I rush them I usually end up posting something with typos which is embarrassing! I also need to do better about really reading posts instead of just browsing through Google Reader, it’s just lazy.

    Great goals, and I’m glad you’re part of the BIP!

    Kim (Sophisticated Dorkiness)

  12. Dan permalink
    January 20, 2009 9:23 am

    If you’d like a tool for setting your goals, you can use this web application:

    You can use it to manage your goals, projects and tasks, set next actions and contexts, use checklists, schedules and a calendar.
    A mobile version is available too.

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