Six Month Update on my 10 BIG Goals of 2015

The halfway point in the year ended on Wednesday so I thought it would be a good idea to review my 10 BIG goals for 2015 to look at my progress, whether it’s still a goal, and what I need to do to complete them by December 31. Here’s my 10 BIG Goals for 2015:

1) Publish a blog post for every single day of 2015.

This has been by far my most successful goal. I’ve written earlier this week that I may not have published a blog post everyday but I’ve written and published six months of blog posts. A few of these days I’ve published multiple posts. For a guy whose struggled to complete a full month of blogging, I’m okay with it for now, but it’s the main thing I want to improve upon in the second half of year. I want this blog to represent me. I want it to be something that can replace my resume in the near future.

2) Teach myself Ruby

I wish I would have titles this goal, “Really Learning how to Program.” I started out the year working on Ruby. Then I started researching and studying data science when I realized that Python & R where the languages of choice so I switched to Learn Python The Hard Way and took Johns Hopkins University’s Coursera R Programming course. This June, I discovered Free Code Camp and no I’m off learning Full Stack JavaScript development. I’ve done a lot of coding and learned a ton. I’m hoping Free Code Camp will help me to get a better understanding of working with the full stack and allow to me to eventually build better products in data science with Python.

3) Raise $2,000 for the American Heart Association in the Pittsburgh Half Marathon.

I complete me this marathon in honor of my father Ken Keller, who passed away from a heart attack three years ago. My original goal was the minimum of $400. I was challenged by a colleague to raise my goal to $2,000. I didn’t end up meeting that goal. My Crowdrise fundraiser raised over $1,000 and finished as a top 4 fundraiser for the American Heart Association. This charity event taught me a lot but it showed me the generosity of the people around me and people I never even met. I came away from this event ready to plan my next fundraiser.

4) Raise $10,000 for DIPG in an Ironman 70.3

I’d love to do this but a lack of available time and money won’t let me do this year. I’m planning an event for next year’s Pittsburgh Marathon.

5) Get involved with the Pittsburgh Tech Community by attending a Meetup once a month.

I’ve attended a few meetups but I haven’t been to one a month. I’d like to start attending Code & Supply Build Nights to meet other Free Code Campers from Pittsburgh. On the other hand, I’ve completed my Toastmasters Competent Communicator and Competent Leadership awards, attended a Toastmasters Leadership Institute, hold a leadership position in one club, and I’m an available mentor in another club.

6) Become debt free.

I’m not yet and it’s not going to happen by the end of the year but I have a plan in place and I’m working towards it.

7) Give one speech per month.

I haven’t done this exactly but I have done a lot of talking at my two Toastmasters clubs. I think I’ve made a lot of improvement from a year ago. Completed my CC and CL awards, joined the leadership of one club, involved in the growth of the other club, and attended TLI.

8) Start a Side-Hustle

This is a point of tremendous interest.  I’ve been dragging my feet on this for years.  This is one of my main To-Do items for the second half of the year.  I’m not saying this is going to be a home run success. I’d be happy with creating something that can bring in a steady stream of income even if it’s a small amount like a $50 a week.

9) Run a project for a non-profit.

Earlier this year, I volunteered to build a Squarespace website for a local non-profit but they decided to go another direction so it never actually launched.  I’m looking for another opportunity but I need to be realistic about but time constraints. The main option I’m targeting is the non-profit project work through Free Code Camp. I’ve begun the courses so I’m a way off from being assigned a project but eventually that will help satisfy this goal.

10) Self-publish a book.

I’ve haven’t technically started a book but these daily blog posts might be good for something.  I do have an idea for the first book I want to write.  It’s the book, Zig Ziglar, tells everyone to write and it’s the first book he wrote.  Zig believes everyone should write a book about, how to succeed in life.  That’s what I hope to do by the end of the year.  I want to use a number of these blog posts to eventually write this book about what I believe it takes to succeed in life.  Zig’s book eventually became, See You At The Top, which went on to be a best seller.  Who knows maybe that could happen to me.  I’ll never know, unless I try.