Looking Back and Forward

For the last 3 years or so, I’ve spent a lot of the time between Christmas and New Years looking over my “goals” list from the prior year and thinking about what was successfully finished, what was dropped (for one reason or another), and what to carry over. It was a very good experience this year.

I don’t count the hundreds of Post-Its that make up my SCRUM folder, but I do count the “Goals” list I made at the start of the year. Based on the totals, I had a good year: Across the list of “Very Important” “Kind of Important” and “Nice to do”,

Finished: 25

Dropped: 5

Didn’t do: 4

That’s a decent score. And — more to the point in my little ADD world — I don’t feel unaccomplished. I can’t say I feel wonderful and excited, but not feeling unaccomplished is a big improvement over the past. So, the experiment worked. The numbers help. It is possible to recognize what you’ve done, it just helps to keep track. Seeing the stack of hundreds of Post-its in the “finished” folder also helps. I can’t avoid knowing that I did a lot.

And those don’t even include gigs and shows: FiveMilesMore played a stack of shows, including benefits, a retirement dinner, and an outdoor show in Taylor that was a lot of fun. I got the Amy Concerts up and running again with a stellar cast, and the Bonfire Poets played a few gigs. High points for me were the performances at the ADDA conference and at Crazy Wisdom in October.

My Back Burner and Fridge list (“product backlog” for the SCRUM-literate) has 348 tasks but that’s fine. What that number means to me is 348 tasks that aren’t running around inside my head trying to distract me from what I need/want to do TODAY.

I’m almost finished setting goals for 2014. I know I won’t get everything done. That’s fine. What counts is using what I’ve learned about ADD to help me clear the clutter and focus on getting a few things done well, rather than trying to push 200 projects forward all at the same time.

It seems to work better that way.