Mighty plans

30th October 2008

As we discussed last week, today is my pretend birthday. Hooray! Pretend birthday hats for everyone.

Three and eleven are my favorite numbers, so age 33 is particularly auspicious. If you see me, you should probably rub my tummy for good luck.

Every year, I make birthday resolutions, because I find them weightier than the New Year’s variety. This year, I have three big ones:

1. Don’t drop-kick the puppy.

In Bird by Bird, Anne Lamott writes:

“Try looking at your mind as a wayward puppy that you are trying to paper train. You don’t drop-kick a puppy into the neighbor’s yard every time it piddles on the floor. You just keep bringing it back to the newspaper.”

This year, I’d like to be a little gentler with myself. I need to focus on my health, my environment, and the present tense. I’m going to take all the time I waste replaying my various inadequacies, and spend it celebrating the things I should be grateful for instead.

2. Make my work the best it can be.

Here’s the part where I lay a little Oprah on you — she always comes up when I’m course plotting. She says the defining question in her life is:

“How do you use your life to best serve yourself and then extend that to the world?”

I spend a disproportionate amount of time working, and this is because I have an awesome job. I’m feeling inspired lately, especially by the design community, and I’d like to use that momentum to rethink the Mighty sites with Oprah’s question in mind.

3. Harness the good.

This is something I think about almost every day. There are so many of you. I’d like to know more about what you know, and find ways to make each others’ lives better. I’m still working through the details, but I want to do some sort of group project with the Mighty Life Lists many of you made with me. Perhaps we could start by crossing a few things off.

Anyway, that’s the overview. There are many detailed to-dos attached to each goal, and I’m excited to tackle them. It’s going to be a good year. You come too.

21 thoughts on “Mighty plans

  1. LaurenR

    Your #3 is something I think about a lot. I work part time and am home part time with my son. I know there are so many women out there who want to connect — with new friends, with resources for their personal growth, with people who want to share ideas, with professional contacts… It seems like a no brainer but why isn’t there something out there that brings us all together or at least makes it easier to find one another?

  2. denise

    create a “mighty life” community site. people can create profiles, share their lists, write about their experiences fulfilling the lists, share photos and videos of the completion of the goals to either inspire others, help others refine their lists (wow, that didn’t look as cool as i thought), or simply to experience certain things vicariously.

    go for a ratings system with the best content bubbling to the homepage – there are dozens of features the site could have – divide the types of content by channel, have editors, a job board… :D

    let me know if you want to spec it out together. i’m local and would love to use my powers for good instead of just advertising and product management.

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  4. Kim

    Happy pretend birthday!

    Loved #1 – it’s good to have lofty goals, but too easy to be a judgmental perfectionist. Let’s be easy on everyone, including ourselves, for being imperfect, and just keep trying and trying. Love that.

  5. betsy

    How about a site called “Mighty Good” (instead of goods) dedicated to the small ways we can help others or the ways we have helped others. Lists might include 10 small ways to help the environment, 10 products that give something back when you buy them, 10 teachers doing particularly nifty things in their classrooms, 10 bloggers that seek to make a difference. (why am I not creating this site?)

    It sounds like your cup of tea and fits your brand. just a thought.

  6. Melissa

    I read your list and thought of a perfect site name – ready? Mighty Generous. Happy pretend birthday!

  7. Betsey

    I turn 33 in 1 month and this post inspired me so much! I can’t wait to see what comes this year!

  8. Dawn

    Happy 33!

    Your book and blog are very inspiring. Your mighty life list? The bravest thing I’ve seen, ever. I love it. Thank you.

  9. mamie

    happy 33 too. i am feeling like this year will be one of great fruition, connection and fun. i cannot wait to see how this site will come into play in my 33rd year. now, i have to get my list together, i have though a lot about it, now to make it realized on ‘paper’.

  10. norm

    You mentioned puppies, so now I imagine if I rubbed your tummy your leg would kick uncontrollably.

    That’d be rad.

    Happy birthday!

  11. Meg

    Happy Birthday! If it helps, I find you extra super duper inspiring, so I think you’re already doing a h*ll of a lot better at #2 than you are even giving yourself credit for. You give me a four year older role model. Do you remember that Anne Lamott bit where she says that children are terrified of growing up because they think of adults as grey faced, stressed beings who rush from place to place and never have any fun, and that our responsibility as adults is to give them a role model of a fully alive person they’d like to be?

    Well, you do that for me virtually, and you help me to be my best self (Note my weaving in of Oprah…)

    Happy BIRTHday! (a day late). I’ll think of you when I pass Ritual Roasters tonight, and raise a trick-or-treating glass of wine to you and your awesome goals.

  12. Melissa

    I haven’t been making an effort to cross things off of my list. Some of them are getting done during the natural course of things, but some of the most important items are going to take some effort. This is a great reminder to read through it and see what I can do now to make them happen

  13. Jordan

    I’m late to the party, but Happy Birthday! I lurk here, Suburban Bliss and Dooce mainly…lol. Your sites have been a great inspiration to me, and I love simple, uncluttered design- makes it a complete joy for this Marketing girl to read. I can’t wait to see what is in store for the Mighty brand and would love to help any way I can.

  14. heather

    super late belated birthday wish! maybe happy 33 1/2 happy birthday!
    how’s the health route going? i can help you with that!

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