Looking Forward to 2017

Looking ahead, it seems like there’s some crucial parts of 2017 that I’m looking forward to. Mainly a 4-6week period around March and April.

Emma my sister’s wedding on the 12th March. Then flying to Brisbane to help organise and also finish prepping my ZDay speech which will be on the 2nd day of ZDay, I’ll be presenting just after Peter Joseph. w00t!

I’ll hang around for a little while with the awesome Brissy geisters, then I’m presenting at the NZ ZDay event in Auckland on the 9th of April. Fk yeah. Hopefully I’ll get to spend a week enjoying the sights. I’ve never been to New Zealand. Then heading home.

Before that big trip I’ll be packing up the place I currently live, putting most of the stuff into storage for a little while. I’ll likely come back from overseas and stay at my Dad’s place for a bit until I can find somewhere I like.

Most of the rest of the year I’ll be working full time at The Distillery. I’m a web dev / sys admin. Working with Symfony PHP, WordPress, Drupal, LAMP stack, Ansible server config, that sort of stuff. I’m also interested in playing with my own ReactJS, Apollo, MongoDB web app for Gather Together a meeting reminder / organising system I had the need for years ago.

The aim is to pay off my remaining credit card debt which is left over from when I tried to work on eMotively full time last year.
I’ve got a backlog of taxes to then start paying off and depending on how things go, my aim is to save up a 3 month runway whereby I can try working on my sci-fi novel The Book of New Eden. It’s meant to be set about 50yrs in the future, but at my current rate when I finally get around to actually writing it the future will already be here.

I know that I’m not going to spontaneously have the spare mental capacity to write an epic heros journey without actually putting the time aside. I’ve got years of ideas, notes, chapter parts and other stuff that needs to be assembled. I have the core framework of the novel, the chapter outlines, small parts of the story, but there’s a lot missing and a lot of work to do.

The first couple of months of the year I’m looking forward to being single. Flik and I were together since just after the Walk for Solar, basically the start of October 2012 so over 4yrs. That’s the longest relationship I’ve been in and before that I’ve always lived in a shared house or with family, never spent more than a couple of weeks living on my own. Hopefully I don’t let the house get too messy.

Talking about the Walk for Solar, the Repower Pt Augusta campaign is getting back into gear with a big, South Australian wide vote for Solar Thermal or Gas. You should vote, it only takes a second.

We know, thanks to BZE the volunteer engineering organisation that Australia can be powered by 100% Renewables using a mixture of over 60% wind, a bunch of Solar Thermal and a touch of biomass backup. Solar Thermal and Wind compliment each other extremely well and SA already has over 30% of it’s power from wind and renewables, with some days wind power produces over 100% of our power.

So yes, I’ll be helping with the Repower Pt Augusta campaign. Getting the first grid connected Solar Thermal power station in Australia would be an amazing first, an epic win. Did I mention it’ll also create a mass of jobs and be good for the economy?

Personal Weekly Review – 12 item list

If you don’t learn from your mistakes, you are doomed to repeat them.

As such, doing a regular review is important and talked about in plenty of life hacking / self-help books.

The thing is, I’ve had a weekly repeating Google Calendar entry about doing a weekly review for years, but it just said “Weekly Review”. When the reminder would notify me I would look at it, spend 10s thinking about the top of mind events that happened and then get on with the rest of my weekend.

I knew that wasn’t good enough and today, whilst sorting some old documents into a filing cabinet I found a review list I wrote back in April 2014 which I’ve just added to my calendar entry. Hopefully you and I will have better reviews and learnings based on these.

Do a personal review of the week and work out the tasks for the next week thinking about :

Review

  1. Finances
  2. Health and Fitness
  3. Family and Friends
  4. Production vs Production Capacity
  5. Household tasks and general organisation
  6. Recent Short Term Wins
  7. Long Term Vision
  8. Important but not urgent tasks
  9. Learning and Education (what to direct my learning towards next)
  10. Teaching, Training, Writing and sharing my knowledge
  11. Willpower challenges and strength
  12. Food/Nutrition

Further Explanation

Finances used to just cover making sure I’d sent my invoices, that I’d paid my bills and ensured I knew when the next bills are. I would occasionally also do a financial snapshot, working out how much money was in my bank accounts, how much I’d spent and received since the last snapshot and what my estimated runway (weeks without money I can go for) is. But since reading Rich Dad, Poor Dad and also Money, Master the Game, I’m more interested in working out my assets and liabilities and how I can create a passive / portfolio based income stream that will allow me to get to financial thriving not just financial surviving.

Fitness is easily tracked in Runkeeper when I’m doing lots of runs, as I was in the lead up to the City to Bay, although I’m concentrating more on my stomach and core which is harder to track, except to remember how sore my muscles are from exercise, that’s a fairly good indicator to me that I’ve been doing well.

Point 4 about production vs production capacity is explained well in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey. In this case I’m taking time to consider if I’ve balanced my time between the two. If you just focus on production (doing things) but not on production capacity (being able to do things better), you’ll get stuck in a rut.

Point 8 about Important but Not Urgent tasks is another one explained in the 7 habits and the fact that you need to focus on them, where as it’s easy to spend way too much time on the Not Important or Urgent and get worked up over the important and urgent.

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Point 11 about Willpower challenges is talked about well in The Willpower Instinct by Kelly McGonigal but setting challenges is also done well with SuperBetter, the game and the book, by her awesome sister Jane McGonigal. I usually try having a weekly Willpower challenge, sometimes related to ensuring I’m exercising, sleeping well, working on the projects I want, or just ensuring I’ve meditated enough and aren’t getting easily distracted.

What I look for in a partner

My ‘requirements’ for a partner are fairly simple. You enjoy spending time with the person and you can and do spend lots of time with them (but not too much, personal time is good too).

Enjoying your time with a person usually equates to having shared interests and values and getting along, being on approximately the same wavelength. Just because you might be a cat person and they might be a dog person doesn’t mean you won’t enjoy your time together. Although some people are very strict when it comes to the type of people they can hang around and the sort of conversations and attitudes they enjoy. For example I know that I despise smoking and smokers, but could overcome that for a really awesome woman. But if she’s religious she has to be REALLY fucking amazing :P

Being able to spend lots of time together is usually harder for me. I’m a bit of a night owl and I often find myself out of sync with the majority of people. It’s like my body is in a different timezone. Maybe I’m half a day ahead ;)
— NB : This was my response to a Facebook post by Anna Scott.