As I drove down Sligo Road in Yarmouth, I started thinking about 2017. I love making resolutions, commitments and vows. They help me challenge myself, explore new ways of living, and also to find my limits or go beyond them. New year's resolutions offer the hope of improvement, fresh starts and new beginnings.
Here are the resolutions I'm considering for 2017. Some are broad, some are specific. I think that the more resolutions are like SMART goals (specific, measurable, agreed upon, realistic, time-based) the better. I'm not sharing these goals to brag, but because I know that publicly committing will make me more accountable. I also hope that by sharing them I might inspire you to get to work on your own goals and give me feedback on mine. I'd love to know what you think.
1. Be a fantastic dad and husband. OK, it's broad beyond belief. Yet, it's really my first priority for 2017, and I'll achieve it through more patience, open communication, and time management.
2. Run at least one mile every day without fail. 30+ min of exercise counts. I tried this last year and made it to March 24th, when we went into the hospital for our daughter to be born. I've been off the wagon. I'm getting back on. Running every day made me feel great. There were a few cold/sick/tired days when my run resembled a trudge, but my physical fitness level felt far better by spreading my mileage out all week than condensing it into 2-4 medium mileage days.
3. Publish my next book E-Pocalypse. This is a big one. It will require writing and/or editing 1000 words a day. I'm almost done with the first draft, but I've stalled at around 95,000 words. It will require query letters, dogged persistence and better time management.
4. Food and Diet. Here are a bunch of things I am eager to try:
- Eat the Forks over Knives Diet in February. This means no meat, dairy or sugar. This will be tricky to balance with family omnivore considerations. I did this once before and forgot to eat enough salt because the diet makes finding allowable processed foods difficult and thus no extra salt is in my food like usual.
- Only eat meat max three times per week and avoid it whenever possible. I'm close to this now so it won't be a big stretch.
- Limit of 5 alcoholic drinks per week and none before driving. This will be easy since I stopped drinking in 2016 shortly after my daughter was born. It's a nuisance so I'm going from straight edge back to casual enjoyment.
5. Buy at least 2 rental units. I'm learning how to invest in real estate on the side. I realized that to save enough for my daughter's college, and allow me to eventually live the life of a part or full time writer, so I need to create passive income streams. The plan is to provide quality homes and move them towards energy efficiency and green materials. Achieving this goal will probably take the form of finding the deal, partners and financing to invest in a duplex or 4-plex apartment building in 2017.