It’s 10 days into February. Why am I talking about resolutions now?
Because six weeks into the year, you have blown most of your resolutions and have an idea which you’re keeping.
So which ones am I keeping (or just getting started on)…
1: Quit Facebook
Status: mostly kept
Not as easy as I thought. Haven’t actually deleted my profile, but I have a strict “no posting, minimal lurking” policy. I realized I needed messenger for staying in touch with some people and FB for monitoring mentions about me. Like it or not, I have a public persona because of my work with Seattle CoderDojo and my former career in developer evangelism. I need to manage my reputation.
2: Blog more
Status: getting started
This was timed for a month after I got off Facebook. So this post is the beginning not of a flood, but at least more than once every couple of months. The next resolution should feed me a LOT of material to blog about, because blogging the stuff I’m studying is a practice that’s helped me finish courses and retain the knowledge better in the past. And since I’m not posting about my life for my friends an family on Facebook anymore, this is my vehicle for looping in those who want to stay up to date with my life.
3: Train Up / Level up
Status: in progress
This is because I realized that both for the work I do and my personal interest, I’d been letting my focus on small snippets for devs and classes for kids prevent me from keeping my skills as current as I wanted them to be. I was falling behind.
My goal is to get 3 certifications by the end of September, stretch goal to get 5. They are:
- AWS Certified Developer – Associate
- AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate
- Free Code Camp – APIs and Microservices
- AWS Certified ??? – Professional
- Free Code Camp – Front End Libraries
I am in progress on 1, with an exam date set near the end of March. I am lucky to get a lot of free training materials as an AWS employee, and expanding my knowledge of AWS beyond the core services I support just seemed like a no-brainer. But since I get the certification exam half-price (and can get even that reimbursed if I pass), sitting for the exam must be done. AWS certifications are like power-up pills for my resume both internally and externally. I’m sitting for those exams.
I am also in progress on 3, but there’s no exam, per-se since it’s a free certification. Still, the projects I have to build will help me learn or reinforce skills and Free Code Camp is building a growing reputation. I am also seeing opportunities to satisfy another resolution (Resolution #5).
The plan is to move on to the AWS Certified Solutions Architect – Associate training and exam after passing the Developer Associate exam. Once I pass that, each has a “Professional” level certification as a next step, and I’ll pick which one I want to do the pro-level certificate on.
If I can knock out the APIs and Microservices exam fast enough, I’ll put the Front End Libraries course into motion.
I got a slightly slow start to these as I tried to lay some groundwork for them, but I’m in progress and moving along at a decent pace.
4: Improve my physical health
Last year I not only dealt with a lot of pain and a surgery to help correct it, I did a lot of comfort eating, added multiple medications to my daily intake, and excused higher-than-normal blood pressure as a result of the pain.
This year, the pain isn’t entirely gone, but it’s manageable. So the plan has been to use diet and exercise to get me off the meds, drop the weight I gained from the comfort eating, get my blood pressure under control, and generally improve all the numbers that my doctor checks at the annual check-up.
I have been able to drop two medications and am on the verge of dropping a third. While my weight needs some more focus, I have been going to the gym regularly for nearly three weeks (though the snow has interfered a bit in the past week) and am feeling better on multiple fronts.
5: Become an open source contributor
I contribute a lot, but to archives related to my workshops for kids, so it doesn’t seem to count. For street cred, I need to contribute to some public repos. As I use more repos for getting my certs and work on mote stuff, I intend to find opportunities to contribute both code and documentation. I’ve identified some opportunities, but need to focus more on certifications right now.
There’s only so much time in the day.
6: Learn to compose music
This is on the schedule for October and completing at least 3-4 of the certifications. I’ve been making up silly little songs for decades, but never set any to music. I have a set of books on music theory, composing using digital tools, and playing digital keyboards. I’m never going to be a great live performer, but with sequencing and sampling, I should be able to compose some songs that the computer (or other humans) can play.
So, that’s my plan. Six weeks in and four resolutions kept or in progress, two pending.
How are yours coming along?