The main reason for posting these online is so that i am accountable and i will be trying to tweet daily updates on the success or failure of the above with an #ADPITR hashtag. If you notice that i fail to tweet or fail any of the above resolutions please kick my ass!
Here are my Arbitrary Dividing Point in Time Resolutions for 2011:
1. Mind - Learn Ruby On Rails Every Day
About half way through last year i started learning the Ruby On Rails framework. While i have completed a couple of books and Rails For Zombies i don't think i have retained much of what i learned as i haven't been using it regularly. I have stopped learning for weeks (occasionally months) at a time and during those breaks i'm sure i forgot a lot. So by making sure i learn/use RoR daily, i should hopefully learn and retain more. I considered putting a time requirement on this resolution, but while it would be nice to do 2-4 hours of programming every day, i suspect just by thinking/reading about it every day, i should achieve the desired effect.
The flip side of this is that i need to plan what i am going to learn better. Last year i ended up on some pretty epic tangents; learning about version control (Git), setting up servers (Fedora) and lots of other somewhat related things (RVM, Vagrant, Amazon Web Services etc). While these tangents were interesting and potentially useful in the future, they aren't strictly relevant now. To start with i need to learn more about Ruby (Why's [Poignant] Guide To Ruby, Programming Ruby etc), refresh what i know about Rails (re-read Head First Rails and Agile Web Development With Rails) and deploy an actual application.
2. Body - Don't Drink Calories
One of the first pieces of advice in The 4-Hour Body is not to drink calories and it tends to be the foundation of a lot of other diets too. While it might seem a relatively easy resolution, it is bound to cut out a lot of calories from my diet (Red Bull, Fruit Juice, Beer and Wine) and i can always add other restrictions to it throughout the year if it gets too easy. On the upside it means that i will still be able to drink nice black coffee along with plenty of water and herbal tea. On the downside it means that i will have to give up alcohol as even spirits contain calories.
Interestingly this was the last resolution i decided on and only came about due to the next resolution.
3. Spirit - Write 750 Words Every Day
I think this will be my favourite resolution, it kind of combines last years Moleskine and blog writing with an awesome website (750Words) and Morning Pages. "Morning what?" you might ask, the best summary is from the 750Words About page:
Morning pages are three pages of writing done every day, typically encouraged to be in "long hand", typically done in the morning, that can be about anything and everything that comes into your head. It's about getting it all out of your head, and is not supposed to be edited or censored in any way. The idea is that if you can get in the habit of writing three pages a day, that it will help clear your mind and get the ideas flowing for the rest of the day.Seeing as my handwriting sucks and i normally only manage around 50 words per page in my Moleskine, i'm glad that 750Words is there to save me time and money.
So far i have done two days (did a practice run yesterday) and it has been useful. I had decided on resolutions 1 and 3 over a week ago and i though i should have a third. In my morning pages today not only did i spot the potential for a Mind, Body & Spirit link but they also helped me narrow down and chose resolution 2. So far both sessions have taken just under 30 minutes each and it seems like a worthwhile investment in time.
The main reason for this resolution is coming across 750Words.com, however it is so awesome it deserves a post all of it's own!