Looking Back to Look Forward: 2016 To Do List

Me trying to get a glimpse of my future.
Me trying to get a glimpse of my future.

With only a few days left in 2015, I wanted to take a moment to reflect on my year and plan for 2016. In my mind, unless goals are written then they aren’t real, so I figured I might as well put these on the internet to hold myself accountable.

First off, there were a couple of experiences in 2015 that really stood out to me:

1) VMWorld

This year was my first visit to VMworld and it was a game changer for me. I was excited when I got the go-ahead and the excitement grew as the event got closer. So what was it that left such an impact on me? It was the community and networking. I was absolutely amazed at the people who I met there and how open everyone was to just chatting with some nobody such as myself.

Twitter was an extremely valuable resource for me because as soon as I would meet someone I made sure to get their Twitter handle to cement that connection. There were a few cases where I was already following someone (and they were already following me amazingly enough) and all of a sudden there would be a whole new level of conversation.

Since VMWorld I have been following more folks and taking in content generated by them, whether it is vBrownBag sessions, study groups, or blog posts.

2) FitBit

In April I decided to hunker down and drop some weight. I was just past my weight category by a few pounds, but I felt sluggish and big. The icing on the cake was that jiggly feeling in my stomach when going downstairs. My wife also wanted to drop some weight which was a huge help and we both got FitBits.

The FitBit itself was a great tool for me – I tend to get competative (even with just myself) so having goals to meet and contests to win really pushed me. By the end of August I was down close to 30 lbs (sadly I am up about 10 or so as of now … blaming that on the holidays), and I actually felt great. This really affected all sorts of other areas of my life in such a positive way that I am hoping to go further with it in 2016.

What are my goals for 2016?

1) Increase community involvement

I have had the desire to get more involved with the community in the past, but that usually dissipated within a month or two after leaving a conference. The last big urge I had was in 2014 when I went to the LOPSA East shindig – I really enjoyed that one as it was put on by users for users (i.e. no vendor sponsored sessions). After VMWorld this year I was completely blown away by the entire vCommunity. This really ignited the spark in me again. You can see details about my new User Group that I am starting up in my previous post.

2) Do something about my networking (the IT kind)

I don’t know how many revisions of CCNA study guides I have, nor how many courses I have taken (both online and in class), and I still haven’t gotten around to sitting the exam(s). I have an OK understanding of networking, but I really need to hunker down and finally put it to paper. I still don’t know if I am going the CCNA route or the VMware NSX route … Possibly both, but we’ll have to see.

3) Continue with the exercise

I really want to pick up running / jogging. Right now I am lucky if I can jog more than two minutes without passing out. I haven’t given it a serious shot since I dropped about 20lbs or so, but I am really aiming to be able to run 5K by this time next year. With any luck, I’ll be able to participate in one of the runs at VMWorld, assuming I get to make it again this year.

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