Monday, January 04, 2010

My work resolutions for 2010

Cross-posted from the Blue Rose Girls.


I always make New Year's resolutions, including my "no candy" resolution of eight or so years ago. One of my resolutions this year (and last year, too, although I didn't achieve it) is to blog at least once a month on my personal blog. (Cross-posts from the Blue Rose Girls don't count.) Well, to get in the habit, I posted my first original bloomabilities post in a loooong time on Wednesday--I looked back on my Oughts here.

So now it's 2010 and it's back to work. Vacation is over--it passed so quickly! I got more than 50% of my very lengthy work "to do" list done, so I feel okay about starting the work year. However, because of the work, it wasn't a true vacation. It never really is, right? I think we all struggle with maintaining a work/life balance.

Around New Year's, agent Barry Goldblatt tweeted (or retweeted, rather) this:
Definitely! RT@DaveMcKean Resolution? More unequivocal days, that is WORK days and PLAY days, not guilty play days and distracted work days.

That really resonated with me, because if I had to pick two words to describe how I felt last year, they would be "busy" and "guilty." I felt guilty all the time because of all of the things I had to do and wasn't doing. All of the submissions yet to read, the unanswered emails and calls, the people to get back to. I felt guilty all the time about not working, even when I wasn't supposed to be working. And that needs to stop.

So, in addition to my usual work goals, in 2010 I'm going to try to set some boundaries and make some changes in how I work. Here are a few of my work-related resolutions I've come up with so far:

1) Learn how to say "no" more. Last year I really did try to say no to favors and requests that I really didn't have the time to do, but if someone insists and says "Are you sure? Please?" I often fold and say yes. I need to stop that. Because this past year, I've said yes to things, and then have not followed through with the task in a timely manner, and that's contributed to this constant sense of guilt.

2) Stop counting on weekend and vacations and holidays to "catch up" on work. Weekends and vacations are "me" time! And it never really works, anyway. (This is an example of "guilty play days.")

3) Don't stay at the office past 9 pm.

4) Work towards "Inbox Zero"--I think this is probably too lofty a goal, so to be a little more realistic, I'd like to have under 20 emails in my inbox by the end of each day (Let's call it Inbox Twenty). If you're curious as to what Inbox Zero is, watch this (rather long) video:

5) While at work, work. Less socializing and web surfing. Sure, Twitter and Facebook and blog reading are also work-related for me, but I need to stop checking the sites throughout the day. Once in the morning, once during lunchtime, and once after 5 pm will suffice.

6) Acquire at least two picture books, two middle grade, and two young adult projects this year.

7) Read a little before bed at least five times a week. Read at least one published book per month.

8) Tidy my office at least a little bit once a week.

And, of course, I resolve to keep all of my resolutions! Really! And if I don't, I won't feel guilty about it, because I hereby declare 2010 the Year of No Guilt.

What are some of your resolutions if you make them? What do YOU declare 2010 to be the Year Of?

Happy New Year, everyone! It's going to be a good one. I can feel it.


~Jamie said...

wow! I do not think I could do that twitter only three times a day thing! I might perish.

:) good luck to you, though...

Elizabeth Fama said...

Just go for #1 and the first half of #7.

Anonymous said...

I agree with Elizabeth - #1 is a good one to cultivate. Maybe it's a chick thing, maybe not, but I know that I also have a habit of saying yes when I want to say no. Then I feel guilty if I don't follow through in the manner I'd like.

Resolutions aside, today my yoga instructor told the parable of the Cracked Water Pot and it gave me a renewed perspective on flaws.

Good luck reaching your goals and Happy New Year.

Holly Bodger said...

Ditto on 1 & 2. 4 sounds great but I think I could only accomplish this if people stopped emailing me for like a year. Or if I threw my computer out of my office window. Hmmm.

I agree with Jamie on #5...they'll be prying Twitter out of my cold, dead hands.

Shelli (srjohannes) said...

9pm at work? they all sound good - good luck! :)

Molly O'Neill said...

I saw that tweet of Barry's, too, and it resonated with me in the exact same way. Here's to all of us finding balance--or at least, more balance--in 2010!

Open Heart said...

Great stuff!
Still working at 9pm?!
What do you do for a living?
Your job sounds great... I love reading and read at least 1 hour a day... I'd love a job where I got paid to read stuff!

and... I also feel that 2010 is gonna be great!

Charles said...

Less TWEETing and more READing!