I had hoped 2018 would be a year of clarity and productivity. It was far from it. 2017 was a year of discipline. I wrote words and code. I sought wisdom and discernment. I had hoped I could carry that momentum in to the next year but I think I just got tired. Work was a mess. I would wake early to attend an early Friday morning prayer meeting to only sit in confusion as to why I had such a hard time engaging.

I am not usually one to set specific New Year’s resolutions, but I am a fan of goal setting. I like achieving. This was something I set myself up for really well in 2017 but did such an awful job of in 2018. I need to get back on track.

At the beginning of 2017 I set out a Five Year Plan. In it I wrote:

2018:
  • publish a book on [insert something here]
  • teach my daughter how to ride a bike
  • buy a dedicated track car
  • spend at least 10 days on the track and graduate to the equivalent of NASA HPDE3
  • learn and ship a side project in Ruby on Rails

I barely accomplished these things. I made no progress on a book. V still doesn’t know how to ride a bike. I did buy a track car. I spent maybe 6 days on track but did graduate to NASA HPDE3. I did not pick up Rails again so I definitely did not ship a side project.

What I definitely did was consume. I bought a Miata and proceeded to rip out the interior and order parts to get it track ready. When my simracing wheel gave up I bought a new one and picked up a way better pedal set. I watched a heck of a lot of television. I drank crazy amounts of beer and whiskey (a Costco-sized bottle of Bulleit Rye all by myself in a matter of 6 weeks).

Something I need again is focus, organization, and the willingness to be vulnerable and make mistakes. These are things that I have done really well at work but have completely neglected in my personal life. I need a new Five Year Plan. But 2019 will look like getting back to basics.

a commitment to improving my racecraft

Both in real life and in iRacing. I set a new personal best at Laguna Seca in the M3 last week but it was still slow. I set a new personal best in iRacing in the MX5 Cup car earlier this evening and it was pretty quick. Both of these can get way better.

a commitment to reading more

A book a month doesn’t seem like a big ask especially if internet surfing is replaced.

a commitment to writing more

My personal and professional writing was at its best at the beginning of 2017 when I was forcing myself to write every single day. I completely fell off the cliff because that pace was unsustainable, but a post a week across this space and my “public” site doesn’t seem like a terribly big deal. And if I can do that, writing a book doesn’t seem that hard.

a commitment to take care of my body

We are starting with a mile of running a day, but at my age the dadbod is the default state. I don’t want to go down the slippery slope of not caring.

So a Five Year Plan is in the works but ultimately I want to get back to the basics. I hope that 2019 is a commitment to just that. Recess, reading, writing, and arithmetic.