Edition Thirty: Goals, not resolutions

An announcement first.

tl;dr: I’ve been sending this lovely semi-regular missive on Tinyletter for the past year, but for a variety of reasons, I’ve decided to move this newsletter to MailChimp.

I’ve been thinking about this for awhile. Why MailChimp? First, it’s a platform I know, and my quick Google of other newsletter platforms doesn’t bring any good contenders. Second, Tinyletter has a number of annoyances and moving means I can queue up newsletters and be more regular about sending The Middles. Thirdly, Tinyletter is going to be swallowed up by MailChimp sooner or later anyway.

If you have an objections/thoughts/ideas, hit reply. I like hearing from you. Now onto why you opened this email….

Goal-setting when everything changes

Set yearly goals/themes
I don’t have a ten-year plan. It seems every time I make a long-term goal, I either reach it very quickly, or it completely changes because the state of my industry, or the world, or whatever else.

But I do make yearly goals. Some of these come out in themes, which I do instead of resolutions. I believe 2014 was a year of yes. 2015 was a year of work. 2016 was a year of intention. This is a yearly thread in Tech Lady Mafia that really changed my life.

Sit down and think what about your work (or life!) needs your focus next year. Make it almost a mantra. I tend to pick a single word, but others write a statement.

Set SMART goals
At SRCCON: Work I participated in a great goal-setting/visioning session with The New York Times’ Jessica Kosturko where she reminded us to make SMART goals — that is Specific. Measurable. Achievable. Relevant. Time-bound.

Instead of saying “I’m going to innovate my workplace!” the goal would be more like “I am going to make sure I schedule 4 hours of project time for each of my employees so they can work on passion projects and we’ll track the projects together at our weekly check-ins.”

The idea is to make a grand idea much smaller and bite-sized.

What’s your year going to be like?
Alexandra Samuel (a brilliant human and tech writer) shared this great booklet for planning your 2018.

It’s called Yearly Compass and it might take a few hours to do, but it seems like it may well be worth looking back to look forward.  I’m actually sending this newsletter on a Sunday to give you a day to sit down and maybe accomplish which as the new year starts.

Happy New Year, and I’ll see you in 2018. If you sit down and do some goal-setting, I’d love to see the results!



My lips are eternally chapped. I had given into this whole thing until I read about Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask on r/asianbeauty on Reddit.

I am a sucker for buying so much Korean skincare (see link below on why that makes me a sucker), but this really does work. Ever since I got it, no chapped, gross, peeling, cracked lips. Plus it smells lovely.

Buy: Laneige Lip Sleeping Mask in Apple scent on Amazon

Great things I’ve read lately
Oh, so this is why I am constantly broke and never see a future where I own a house. (Highline)
Korean beauty isn’t an age-old secret. (NYT)
What comes after the reckoning? (NYT)

Jobs jobs jobs