So I’m behind in the whole “do I make New Year’s resolutions or come up with ‘3 words’ or just ‘1 word’ or do I just quit while I’m ahead” thing. To be honest, I began working on this at the first of the year and spent several nights thinking about it. I just haven’t gotten around to writing it out. Add to that, I’ve been finalizing some arrangements that impact my goals for the year. So without further ado, here are my goals for 2014. They may be encapsulated in three words, by the way. Even though I feel like a complete tool coming up with “3 words”.

  • Content - I have said for years that I’m content with where I am in life. Over the last six months I’ve been honest with myself. I am not content. I have spent the last 15 years looking for what’s next or coveting what others have. That may be marriage, children, a clear “calling”, confidence, a job I love, more money, or a closer relationship with Christ. All that has gotten me is bitterness and regret for wasting so much time.

    So, I want to begin the long journey of learning contentment. Content with my singleness. Content with my job. Content there are things I can’t fix or change about myself but God can redeem.

  • Mentor - I write code for a living. I’ve been doing this for over 13 years. I’m not good enough to work at Google but I’ve learned a lot during this time. In some ways, I’ve overcome the challenge of programming. So as I look to where this “career” will take me, I need new challenges. That’s why I want to spend time becoming a mentor to my younger coworkers. I want to be willing to teach or coach when they need it and keep my mouth shut when they need to learn for themselves.

    I had a publisher approach me last year about writing a technical book. I signed the contract last week. A day or two before, I came across Jeff Atwood’s post about how you shouldn’t write a technical book. He makes valid points and by the end of this process, I may feel the same.

    But I’m looking at this in a different light. I don’t expect to make any money or become famous. I do expect to learn processes to help me with my other writing endeavors. I expect to learn that I can overcome seemingly daunting obstacles. And, ultimately I want to help some developers learn new skills.

  • Adventure - I’m not looking to hike the Appalachian trail or climb Mt Everest. I just want to see each day as an adventure. I want to find a way to turn a mundane work project into an adventure. Learn new skills, try a new role. I want a walk on the same trail to feel like an odyssey. When I travel, I want to relish the extreme blessing I have to travel and see even the simple things in a new light.

So those are my three words. Nothing ground-breaking. However, I believe if I keep these ideas in the foreground I will reach 2015 a different man. I’m not looking for money, a sculpted physique or glory. So many past goals were in those veins. These characteristics will lead me to joy. Not happiness, but joy, because if I’m content, the external things will not impact my joy.