Groundhog Day Resolutions Review Day 6

Groundhog Day Resolutions Review Day 6

Yes, it’s that time again: Groundhog Day Resolution Review Day! This is the extended format version of new year’s resolutions, diddled a bit to make them a little more workable with my oh-so-modern life. You can read about the idea’s genesis in detail if you like, but the basic idea is this:

  • January 1st is a terrible day to do New Years Resolutions. We’re all hungover, and got a whole month of catching up to do. February 2nd, now there’s a day that needs a boost.
  • New Years Resolutions fail because we don’t follow up on them. So why not designate regular easy-to-remember days like 2/2, 3/3, 4/4, and so forth?

I’ve been putting myself through the process this year to get a feel for what works and what doesn’t. I haven’t yet made a nifty download for this, but fellow form productivista Corrie Haffly has her awesome Monthly Goal Trackers. There are a few people scattered across the Internet who are also trying this out, so ROCK ON.

Anyway, it’s time to catch up and figure out how badly I’ve been blowing my resolutions.


I’ve been noticing that as the months go by, I’ve been adhering less and less to the specific goals, but overall I’ve been following the spirit of my GHD resolutions. I had deliberately picked (I think) just three overall goals in February:

  1. Make Money from Writing and Making Stuff
  2. Build a Sustainable Social Network
  3. Sell a Product This Year

In May I started to realize that I was not making deliberate progress toward fulfilling these goals, so I started setting action items. Here’s the chain of them:

1. Make Money from Writing and Making Stuff

mo action status
May Put the HUB statement on my current website, on a design services page, on Monday, May 14 WHIFFED
June Put the HUB statement on the website. June 20th is the day to allocate time toward WHIFFED
July Redesign Large Photo Header on Website, Transition to EE HALF DONE

2. Build a Sustainable Social Network

mo action status
May Create a “Potential Co-Schemer List” of people I have never talked to. Talk to one person on that list on Wednesday, May 16 WHIFFED

3. Sell a Product This Year

mo action status
May Select and package the Emergent Task Planner for a printer on Saturday, May 12 DONE
June Create some original content, like a booklet or number of thoughts, and sticking it up on or Blurb. June 27th is the allocated date. WHIFFED
June Get the ETP Printed, Dang It! June 13 is the day around which I will plan something WHIFFED
July Figure out how to create some kind of pre-ordering system, and it’s time to formally think about customer service. July 12. DONE
July Repurpose old content for possible printing TESTED

I can see that many tasks just didn’t get done, so that’s not too good. However, overall I’ve incrementally moved just a little closer to fulfilling my resolutions. That’s something to feel good about, though I probably wouldn’t be that LOUD about it :-)


I’ve noticed that while my planned actions didn’t necessarily get done, I think just having these thoughts on my mind has helps fit other opportunities to my needs.

  • The Emergent Task Planner sheets are going to get printed, and they’ll be sold. That’s going to happen. I’ve just been slowly plugging away at it.
  • The Social Networking actually has been going well for me personally. However, as I privately suspected it might, the World of Warcraft Business Networking started out strong, but has dwindled. I haven’t been putting the energy into running the guild as a “primary leisure activity”. However, I have made a few new friends through it, which is great! I’ve also discovered that my personal social network has expanded to include the coffee shop as a kind of spiritual anchor. I would never have guessed this would happen, but I am getting to know the people that are there every day, and they are real people with interesting lives, troubles, challenges…just workin’ to get by, working for a better life the best they know how. Getting back in touch with that has been important to me. It gives me perspective. I’ve also come to realize that I am both craving responsibility while pushing it away. I like being responsible for things, but I hate being drained of my energy. I’m also afraid of wasting people’s time (including mine) by trying new relationships and not seeing them work. This is a poor attitude…best to wade in and make what sense you can. You can’t let the possibility of something being disappointing prevent you from trying. I tend to try to think of ways to maximize success before starting something, but all that seems to ever get me is a fine coating of cat hair across the back of my pants, impressed upon my backside by the couch.
  • As far as Making Money from Writing and Making Things, this has been reframed as a growing sureness of my identity as a designer. The more things I’ve written and made, the more easily it is to see what’s made me happy and what keeps me fulfilled. My challenge is to keep chipping away at the mountain of tasks and stay energized.


I’ll keep this short and sweet:

  • Print Pads! Ship Them!
  • One New Statement on the Website that Clarifies My Design Work!
  • Start a bunch of New Working and Personal Relationships. See What Happens.

If you’d like to read about the past Groundhog Day Resolution Review Days, click below!


  1. MiGrant 17 years ago

    Thanks for sharing this, Dave. At least I’m not alone in making way too slow progress on these kinds of new-directions projects. I’ve really been struggling with how to keep the day-to-day work I still have to do to make a living from sucking up all the energy I have to put into building a future.

  2. beth 17 years ago

    Don’t forget when you switch to EE to do a comparison write up between it and WordPress. Curious minds want to know haha!

  3. Corrie 17 years ago

    Incremental is the key! Even though we don’t check everything off the month’s action list, the thing to cheer about is that you’ve still moved farther forward than if you’d never set a goal in the first place. Good luck with this month’s actions!

  4. Dave Seah 17 years ago

    MiGrant: I know the feeling all too well! As the saying goes: “Do not hurry. Do not wait.”

    Beth: Yah, I am dying for that myself :-)

    Corrie: Thanks Corrie! I’m glad you iterated that philosophy! Progress is progress! Waves tiny banner