Floodlight or Laser?

You can burn bright, you can burn strong, but when it comes time to get stuff done you can either be a floodlight or a laser. Trying to be both will just burn you out. Trust me.

There comes a time in every blogger’s life when he or she must decide what their blog is about and is that blog worth continuing. After all, running a website can be an incredible resource drain, especially when one has other goals to pursue. That time has come for Cubicle Warrior.

I originally started Cubicle Warrior as a way to post random tidbits of ideas and as a place to vent my frustrations at work. It soon became apparent that posting disparaging comments about my office or coworkers was an incredibly poor idea and indeed could become a career limiting move.

The Career-Limiting Move is dead!

Having come to my senses, I deleted anything that was too, too condemning (aka amusing, funny, worth reading, etc) and then posted pretty much whatever and whenever I felt like comfortably in anonymity. That was OK. I found that a lot of people came to me for advice based on things I did. Once I realized that some of the ideas bouncing around in my head were valuable and, dare I say even interesting, to people I knew, people I respected, I began to think myself uniquely qualified to share my wisdom with the world at large. Couple that with this crazy idea that I should post regular content every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and thus started the mess I call a blog that you have before you.

Success? Well, yes and no. I learned A LOT about posting content and a little about myself. Chief among these, I learned that while I can, on occasion, turn an amusing phrase I am a pretty poor writer. (Note: one with admittedly little grasp of common grammatical conventions and other wastes of time.) Deflating for someone who has an unchecked check box of writing the next (3!) Great American Novels on his bucket list. The good news was that I had a great opportunity to practice my skills in front of an audience. While I may not be getting much better, I do at least have a greater understanding of how much I have to learn.

What is Worth Doing?

If my goal is to write a novel, then what kind of sense does it make to spend my time writing about open water swimming then? And what on earth does swimming have to do with ‘Cubicle Warrior’-ness? And, by the way, is having some absolutely random blog filled with semi-coherent ramblings on your bucket list (if so, why???)?

Well, the answer is pretty clear to me but as I’ve expressed it to approximately zero people, it may not be so clear to you.

You see, I have other goals. Lots of them. My bucket list stretches from here to eternity. And, in my crazy head, they all interrelate. While that is excellent news for my own sanity, it is not so good for actually making progress and completing any one goal. My attention is like the floodlight in the title of this post. It’s powerful but diffuses greatly over distance. I know that the way to accomplish my goals is more along the lines of a laser; intense in attention and surgical in application.

That Which is Worth Doing is Worth Doing Well

The accountability that this website can/will/does provide is key to the entire bucket list. And now it is time to bring order out of the chaos that is Cubicle Warrior….. and my other projects. That starts here on Monday.

Long Live the Career-Limiting Move!

Starting Monday I’ll list my goals, my current state, and my intentions. I will describe how these seemingly unrelated goals actually do interconnect. I’ll review the most recent actions I’ve taken on each as well as create a list of proposed actions I expect to follow in the next week.

Homework

Here’s where you come in. The purpose of this site is to not only document my progress towards my goals but to inspire others to achieve their own. If we share the same goals, I welcome your wisdom. Maybe between the lot of us we can figure out how to get them done quicker. But since nothing gets done with out work, here’s your first Cubicle Warrior assignment.

This weekend (or whenever it is that you read this post) do as I am doing. Sit down and write a list of goals you have. Medium (1 -6 months), Long (6 months to 2 years), and Lifetime (the rest) work best here. Don’t make them mundane like ‘mowing the grass.’ Make them noble, fulfilling, and worthwhile like ‘finish college’, ‘teach a course’, or ‘get my pilot’s license.’ Keep the goals specific. For example, don’t say ‘get in shape’, or ‘play guitar’, or ‘finish my project.’ Stick to the non-ambiguous goals of ‘lose 2 inches off my waist’, or ‘do a Led Zeppelin cover on stage’ or ‘finally bring that software project to market.’

You don’t have to share with the group if you don’t want to. I will tell you that sharing is therapeutic, cathartic even, and that goals have this funny way of getting done once you’ve told someone you are going to do them.

Comments

  1. Excellent advice. I have too many interests and projects in the works and nothing is getting finished. I am making my list now!

  2. avatar Cubicle Warrior says:

    It’s a good problem to have, isn’t it Jonathan? The by product of an alert and active mind.

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