New Year's Resolution Vibe Check

The not-quite-halfway progress report.

It’s been over five months since I started my New Year’s resolution, where I committed to writing 52 blog posts by the end of the year. This week I’m on the first vacation I’ve been able to take since the pandemic started, and, for lack of anything else to really write about, am doing an almost-halfway checkup on the whole process.

Almost immediately into the process I wished I’d set my sights a bit lower. One post a week is a pretty intense pace, it turns out. If I were to reset the parameters of the resolution I would probably halve the requirements, down to 26 posts in the year. One concern would be that I would be more likely to forget to do the bi-weekly post, whereas with the current system it’s coupled with my normal work rhythm and so stays more top of mind. But I think I’d have a much easier time (perhaps even twice as easy!), so it might balance out.

My thought in the beginning was that I could write on Friday afternoons or Monday mornings as a bookend to working, but what’s generally happened is that I write on weekends. During the week the energy to write something up just isn’t there; writing posts is a kind of work all on its own, and I can only bring myself to do so much work everyday.

Lately it’s been particularly difficult to pump out the posts. Obviously a large component of this is that I quickly picked all the low hanging fruit that were on my mind when I started this resolution, but an unexpected culprit has also appeared: seasons. When I started the resolution it was still winter, and during the cold months it’s a lot easier to stay inside and work on a computer. As the weather warms it’s been harder to find time though, in between working on the garden and going out and doing things with friends.

Figuring out what to write about is becoming more of a challenge as well (obviously, given the topic of this post). Ideally I’d like to post about things I’m doing, rather than just talking about some topic, and for the most part I’ve mostly kept to that. Constantly posting about ideas I have or opinions I hold isn’t really contributing any real work, unless the ideas or opinions are really groundbreaking (they’re not). If, on the other hand, I use the posts as a kind of background motivation to get up and do something useful, so I can write about what I did, then at least progress has been made on something.

The catch there is that I’ve now added an additional “thing” to do every week, in addition to the weekly post, and, as previously covered, I just don’t have the time and energy for that. So some posts (ahem) are pretty much fluff, and I barely have the energy for those! Yet another reason to wish I’d committed to 26 in the year, I suppose.

It hasn’t been all added stress and strife though. Doing the posts has caused me to work on side projects more, and even better quite a few people I know have given me really good feedback on what I’ve been doing, and some have even started getting involved. So, in the sense of being a way to inform others about the things I’m working on, the posts are a great success! And I’ve definitely been more consistent about working on side projects this year.

I’ll wrap this up and continue with my vacation. Summary: blog is more extra work than expected, it’s maybe worth it, but it would be more worth it if I halved my pace. I’m not going to halve my pace, because that’s not how resolutions work. The end.