A year’s worth of goals
I set goals, take control, drink out my own bottles
I make mistakes, but learn from everyone
And when it’s said and done
I bet this Brother be a better one
2Pac – Ghetto Gospel ft. Elton John (2005)
The majority of the time, success happens on purpose. Someone has a vision and they set out to achieve it. Rarely does it happen by accident. Rarely does someone bumble into something great and then feel fulfilled about it. The realization of any extraordinary aspiration has to be intentional and deliberate. So how can we realize something intentionally and deliberately? GOALS!
We can achieve our most ambitious dreams through setting goals and working towards them. The first time I distinctly remember writing down goals for myself was at the beginning of my sophomore year of college. I mentioned how that came to be in this post: surrounded by arete. Another time I had a fortuitous experience with goal setting was at the beginning of my study abroad trip to Granada, Spain. The program leaders had us fill out a worksheet that included some prompts about what we wanted to achieve during our time there. I still have the sheet back at home in my Granada scrapbook and that’s a testament to how meaningful that goal setting process was for me back then. One of the prompts had to do with trying something new, while another was about continuing something you enjoy doing from back home. I ended up learning flamenco (a type of dance) and continued my weight training at a gritty gym called Gimnasio Harmony. I ended up accomplishing almost everything I set out to do going into the trip and I believe writing it all down on paper at the beginning was a significant catalyst in that achievement.
The one-year anniversary of this blog recently passed and it made me think about what I want this blog to be a year from now. I thought about things like the overall concept/purpose of the blog, the display/theme, how many posts/what they will be like, and how to increase the blog’s audience. Here are some of my OneSpiritualPitcher related goals for the next year:
- Improve the blog’s layout, pick a new theme and transition over to it by the start of 2017
- Post a Seed4Life article in order to inspire others and get my story in front of a larger audience
- Use 10 tags per post instead of 5 to increase search relevance
- Post at least 2 articles a month over the next year (25-40 total)
- 200+ more followers and 5,000+ more page views
- Achieve 100+ likes on a single post
I created an Instagram account at the beginning of my adventure in Australia to complement this blog and here are my one-year goals for it:
- 2000+ followers by November 1st, 2017 (currently at ~280)
- less than 1000 following (currently at ~550)
- 30-50 new posts (not more than 50 because of oversaturation)
- 150+ likes per post on average in my last 10 (as of November 2017)
If you can’t tell from those goals, I’ll say it explicitly, I’m a numbers guy. I’ve always been a numbers guy (Wait what does the label ‘numbers guy’ even mean? Nerd or skillful analyst?). I remember in 1st grade how a couple of buddies and I would take turns multiplying big numbers to see who could create the biggest one. Little did we know at the time, numbers increase infinitely :). Man, we were dorks, but that was some serious fun lol. Today, I love incorporating numbers into the goals I set. This is actually a part of the SMART goals framework. Here’s a version of the framework:
- S -> Specific
- M -> Measurable
- A -> Attainable
- R -> Rewarding (Wikipedia says relevant, but I disagree)
- T -> Time-bound
I like the framework. It’s a big step to even begin to make goals and it’s an even better step to make goals in a way that pull you towards achieving them. If goals are specific, measurable, attainable (All goals are attainable, maybe not in this lifetime by you as an individual human being, but literally anything in our imagination is possible in our universe. Our imagination is of the universe. The nature of the universe is infinite creation and destruction. When I hear attainable, I think of that as just a scale of ‘certainly attainable’ to ‘extremely challenging to attain in your lifetime’. Rant over lol.), rewarding, and time-bound, then we are exponentially more likely to achieve them on schedule. I like using ‘rewarding’ instead of ‘relevant’ because of a concept called ‘The Currency of Purpose’. I heard about that idea from Sekou Andrews in a podcast-style video RSDTyler posted to youtube. Every decision you make, every goal you set, gives you fulfillment in direct relationship to how closely it connects to your life’s purpose. You can think of it as currency. Make deposits into your purpose and you’ll find yourself living a fulfilled life of love. Straight cash homie. Hopefully, you can see the framework within the goals I listed throughout this post.
- Throw 87mph by the time I turn 24 (about 3 months away)
- Wolves have at least a .600 winning % in games I pitch in
- Start at least 8 games and average at least 6 innings per start
- Average less than 16 pitches per inning
Those goals mean that I must be efficient and have command of my pitches.
- Throw 90+mph by November 1st, 2017
I remember how when I first decided that I wanted to really improve as a baseball player (May 2012) and reach my potential, I thought topping out at 90mph would be easy, that it would take a year to two at the absolute most. I got close when I threw 87mph back in Sept. 2014. After a few setbacks, I’m still trying to get back to where I was once was, let alone blow past that limit into the transcendent beyond. With the help of the coaches at the ranch (pilgrimage to a pitching myelination mecca), I now have a plan to reach my pitching goals. I also have other goals in non-baseball related areas of my life, but here I’ve kept it focused on the blog/baseball.
Europe 2017 goals:
- Contact 100+ clubs in total by December 1st, 2016
- Generate promising responses from at least 20 clubs
- Turn the correspondence with those 20+ clubs into at least 4 offers to play.
- End up in Sweden (or another dream European destination) by the end of April 2016
I’ll use a similar process to how I went about landing an offer to play in Australia. I learned a lot from all those emails and marketing myself. Now, I can use what I learned to earn a spot on a club in Europe for the summer (northern hemisphere summer that is) of 2017. All of that is contingent on continuing to improve my pitching ability. Grind to shine. 70s->85+ in 16′. 85->90+ in ’17. Suerte.