(last edited on February 15, 2023 at 12:25 pm)
After reviewing last month’s kickoff post, I was struck by how difficult it was to read. I’ve made a decision to try to simplify my blog posts moving forward as part of a general reboot of all my online outlets.
I’ll get into that later; now it’s time to review last month’s progress on my Groundhog Day Resolutions. These are like New Year resolutions, except I do them on February 2nd instead of January 1st, and I followup on progress on March 3, April 4, May 5…you get the idea. Regular review is absolutely key to making regular progress; since the Month/Day pattern is easy to remember, I’m much more likely to do my review at least once a month.
Last Month’s Insights and Achievements
These are the goals as I currently understand them:
- Develop a system for mindblowing productive synergy, which I’m in the process of defining.
- Continue cultivating and curating the communities that nurture me.
- Continue growing my side business.
- and new for this month: reboot the blog.
Let me address each goal in turn.
1. Mindblowing Productive Synergy
I described this in last month’s kickoff post, but let me try to distill it further:
“Mindblowing Productive Synergy” is the feeling of excitement that come from being part of a group of people who help each other do wonderful things that they might not have done otherwise.
By identifying this as a goal, I’m attempting to connect my ambition to my pursuit of joyful experience. I’m also subtly acknowledging that it is the connection with other people that makes the joy experience possible. I have more to write on this, such as the article on “what gives me joy” that I’ve been working on intermittently all month. I would say that this article is my main effort at the moment; hopefully I will deliver it later this month.
2. Cultivating and Curating Community
I’ve come to believe that my potential for joyful achievement is limited by a lack of community, and that it is my responsibility to ensure that I find (or help found) places where people like me can freely express and pursue their passions. I have very clear ideas about who these people could be and how my own life principles would mandate the culture.
My main efforts along these lines has been the YouTube livestreaming and the virtual coworking chatroom. The videos help promote my positive attitude toward sharing process and experiments in an authentic (and occasionally grumpy) manner. I’m using myself as an example, and I try to maintain the perspective that I’m just talking to friends so they can keep up with what I’m doing. The chatroom is becoming a supportive place where the regulars are starting to help shape a culture of inclusive positivity and encouragement. It’s been a great place to hang out and talk about how we’re doing the work, as well as compare notes on the challenges of faceing whatever barriers are in the way.
3. Growing My Side Business
While it has been a very busy month for my contract work, my long-term strategy for income is to have a easy-to-manage business selling cool stationery products that I design. This has been ongoing since 2009, and it’s at the size now where if I can raise revenues from about $3000/month (with a profit margin of about 30%) to $10000/month, that will solve a lot of concerns I have about retirement. What it will take is continued effort to improve the offerings I have. The market for this type of planner has become a lot more competitive than when I first started too.
I think the approach I’ll take is to promote the values I have expressed in points (1) and (2) above. This is not only my philosophy, but it is my brand. A related effort is my Patreon Page, which combines all points (1) through (3). There are now 33 patrons contributing about $100 a month, and I’m looking forward to sharing more of my work with them. It should be pretty fun! Already I’ve provided several freebie downloads for patron.
4. Reboot the Blog
I think it’s time to redo it. There is a lot of old content still out there, but I think it’s time to revisit the concepts there for a vastly different online landscape. I’m much clearer now on what I know and what I’m willing to stand for. Rather than try to preserve the old content, I’ll just archive it and start a leaner blogging system. This is a good time to do it because my server is up for renewal now that it’s at the end of its service life. TIME FOR A CHANGE! RAWR!
The Month Ahead
I will be doing quite a lot of traveling soon, visiting my Dad again in Taiwan. I’m not quite ready for the trip, as I’m winding down the flurry of project work. While I’m in Taiwan I’ll have a chance to reflect and regroup. I’m feeling rather positive about it now as an opportunity for a vacation from my usual inputs.
That’s about all I have for this review this month. Thanks for reading! If you’re interested in our virtual coworking chat, check out the link at davidseah.com/virtual-coworking.
It’s awesome you are visiting your Dad in Taiwan again. It seems like you had a lot of insights while you were there.
You are right about the paper planner world changing! There are several very expensive multi piece systems in stores now, ranging from professional to very cutesy.
Hi Mary! Yah, I am hoping this is a good trip, though I am always a bit anxious before traveling there! Will be spending some time in Taipei with friends this time around for a bit, then will go visit Dad later! Regarding planners, I’m also seeing some very basic ones that do something similar to what I have, but are much more simplified! I’ve been thinking about making an “ETP-S” variant that is more suitable for basic planning, without the time tracking and more room to write in the day grid. But what would make it still be an ETP then, I wonder? :)