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2017 Q1 In Review

First Quarter Goals Check-In

Today is April 1st, that means a day for a little harmless pranking, but it also marks the end of the first quarter of the year! This marks a good time to check in on our goals. In my post on goals one point I made was that a benefit of setting codified goals was the ability to gauge your progress through the year. I like to do that about once a quarter, so that means now. First let's review my goals for the year. They are:

  • Read 25 Books
    • Finish books by Tolkien
  • Get caught up on magazines
  • Read at least 750 comics
  • Reach 175lbs
  • Launch (Secret R&P project)
  • Start learning bladesmithing and complete at least a dozen blades

In general, my start of the year is either way ahead, or way behind. I rarely manage to actually be on track at this stage of the game, and I like to use this time to check in on that progress and see where I need to do better. If I'm ahead on something I don't really look at that. I figure if I'm ahead of the game then either I'll end up doing better over all, or I have some buffer latter in the year, either way I don't need to do anything for those areas.

Let's look at each item in detail then. First off is reading books. My goal for the year is 25 so at this point in the year I'd ideally be working on my 7th. How am I actually doing? Well, I've only read 3 books, but I am currently reading 2 more. However, even if I were to finish them both today I'd still be a little behind. Not too bad, but need to make more time for reading books, for sure. A sub-section of this was to finish reading my books by Tolkien, one of the books I'm reading is by him, but I'm way behind on this one. Need to read more books in general, and need to filter more Tolkien books into the mix as well.

Number 2 is get caught up on magazines. I subscribe to a bunch of magazines, and just added a new one this year. I really like magazines, have for ages, but keeping up, particularly with the number I subscribe to can be a challenge. I'm actually making some pretty good progress though. I've managed to get caught up on all the print magazines I still receive (5) as well as 4 of my digital subscriptions. Unfortunately, several of the digital subscriptions I'm *way* (multiple years in some cases) behind on. So, I'm probably right on track for this one. Lots of progress, but lots to go yet.

The last goal related to reading is for my comics. I collect a bunch of comics, and I was doing pretty good staying caught up for awhile, and then they started just stacking up (much like the magazines). I got them all in reading order and I've been plugging away at getting caught backup. Even if I complete my goal for the year I'll still be behind, but it will be a pretty significant bit of progress. The goal for the year was 750 so 1/4 of that should put me at 188 (OK, 187.5, but close enough). In my accomplishments journal this year I've been keeping a running total at the top of each entry, so this is also an easy one to look up. At this point in the year I've read... exactly 188. I don’t know how I managed to pull that off, but I’ll take it!

The next goal is that classic one about loosing weight/getting in shape. I bought a few more machines for our little home gym, and I've been trying to work out 5 times a week. Unfortunately I've also been eating way too many sweets. My goal of 175lbs translates to a loss of just 16lbs for the year, totally doable, but so far I've only managed to lose 2. Would much rather see the 4 I was hoping for. That said, historically I'm much better at losing weight in the summer when I have much more energy and I can get outside and do stuff, so I'm also not worried about this one.

I can't say too much about the secret R&P project because, well, it's still a secret. I'm still on track to launch this year, but I was hoping for closer to late spring, and based on latest projections it'll probably be closer to (hopefully) early fall. Wish I could say more, it's a bit of a departure for me and there's been a lot to learn, plus plenty of challenges, which can be fun. It can also be, well, challenging. After I finally get the launch ready for public I'll have a detailed blog post about the whole process (it may get broken up into multiple entries like my foray into bladesmithing).

Speaking of which, that takes us to the last established goal for the year: Getting into bladesmithing. You can read all about my first steps into the process here. I've made the first inroads and I've completed 2 knives. I literally just finished my second knife moments before putting the final touches on this post. Ideally I'd be done with 3 at this point, but I'm not that far behind, and it's an easy one to catch up on. This should also be something that will be a bit easier to manage come summer time so I'm not worried.

So, in summary I'm right on track for 2 out of 6, 3 are just a little behind and it should be pretty easy to get back on track for those. 1 is a little more nebulous, so it's harder to actually judge progress and where I "should" be at this point in the year. I still feel confident it will happen this year, just latter than I had originally hopped.

I'll check in twice more this year before the final results post at the end of the year. I hope everybody else is keeping up on their goals this year and takes this time for a little reality check to see if there's anywhere they need to put it a little more effort, I certainly noted a couple areas that need some attention.