As you start the new year with the best intentions for your personal, professional and emotional development, don’t forget to put your tech life on the list. Here are 13 resolutions to choose from, depending on your own tech challenges and commitments; you’ll know which one is right from the combination of excitement and anxiety it inspires:
- For the social networking butterfly: To think about the three to ten people you’d most like to develop stronger relationships with this year, and prioritize their news updates in your Facebook, Twitter, Google+ and other social network-reading. (Lists and circles will help.)
- For the reluctant techie: To try three new software programs or web applications, spending at least 10 hours using each one.
- For the online shopper: To visit shopping sites only after making a specific “items needed” list, and to buy only items on that list.
- For the Twitter junkie: To look at your follower number no more than once a month, so that you can focus on your contributions and experience rather than the number of followers you acquire.
- For the parent: To ask your kid’s/kids’ permission before you post any photos, cute quotes, art works or stories about them.
- For the productivity software geek: To spend 10 hours completing tasks for every 1 hour you spend playing with the
boxsoftware they came in.
- For the mobile junkie: To stop taking out your phone or tablet during a gap or wait of five minutes or less. Instead, just be. (Thank you Leda Dederich for this one.)
- For the Internet free-loader: To contribute or upload at least one tip, answer, blog post, media file, review or offer of help for every 100 things you discover, answer or enjoy online.
- For the early adopter: To wait at least two weeks after the release of a hotly-anticipated new gadget before you buy yours.
- For the analytics junkie: To check your site stats only when you have a specific question, with actionable implications, in mind before you look at your latest numbers.
- For the not-quite-a-coder geek: To write your first script, snippet or app.
- For the developer: To invest 10% of the time you spend writing code in documenting the code you have written.
- For the email forwarder: To stop forwarding email chain letters, cute cat pictures, funny jokes someone sent you, tragic stories about chronically ill children, consumer alerts about reportedly dangerous products, unbelievable true life stories that are unbelievable because they aren’t actually true, calls to action for social or political causes you aren’t directly involved in, or basically, any other email you want to forward but haven’t personally written. Believe me when I say that everybody who is making any of the other resolutions is begging you to make this one.
Whatever tech resolutions you make for the coming year, I hope it is one in which your online life is meaningful, fulfilling and integrated with an offline life that is every bit as rewarding.