My little blog is over a month old now. Woohoo!
I started the blog in early November, when my mentor informed me about BIGHAG - Big Hairy Audacious Goal. I'm not sure where the acronym came from but it's stuck with me. Her BIGHAG is way more admirable than mine. She cares about health care, thinks it's a right that every American is entitled to. Her life goal is to impact change in this arena. A BIGHAG is something you have to accomplish within six months. Something that seems totally crazy and out there but that can also probably be accomplished within that short time frame of half a year. Related to her overall goal, her BIGHAG is to talk to a decision maker. A politician or lobbyist who can impact health care in America.
Her fuzzy goal - impact change in relation to health care - manifested itself as a speaker at a major health care symposium. That was her litmus test. I know I will have accomplished my fuzzy goal when this happens! It provides her a real, tangible thing to strive for.
So what's my tangible thing? Giving a Ted talk. That's it. When I'm on a run or a long drive and killing time in daydream land, I'm giving a Ted talk or being interviewed by Jon Stewart (even now, Trevor Noah doesn't quite cut it). It's always some vague topic - being single today! traveling! women in the workplace! - but it's always me, being an expert in some thing, giving advice like no one's business.
Okay, so there's my tangible goal. A Ted talk. What can I do to get there? Figure out what the hell I want to talk about.
Sheryl Sandberg, our Saint Lean In, was on the Daily Show while promoting her book, Lean In. During her interview, she talked about how the book came to be. She had been asked to give a Ted talk about some Facebook action. Instead, she ended up talking about women in the workplace, a talk which eventually led to Lean In. Following this Ted talk, a former colleague emailed her and asked, so this is your thing now? Her response was 'yes' and it's been her thing ever since.
But what is my thing? And that's where the blog comes in. I want to commit a serious six months to writing a blog. I added a weekly roundup to the mix. The reason is two fold - one, I can stick interesting links in a place instead of just reading the articles and forgetting them as soon as I've closed the tab. Two, it gives me a deadline. Every Friday is a scheduled post. I need to create shit to put in between them. One post at least, preferably more. Something to keep me writing, especially on those weekdays after work, when I get lazy and just want to watch Netflix.
My BIGHAG isn't as impressive as a serious discussion with a policymaker but it's a start. Devote six months to a blog, putting thoughts and words out there in the universe. Going from internet lurker to internet sharer and creator. And then see what my thing is. What do I enjoy writing about? What do I have stuff I want to share about?
We are a month in, a sixth of the way there! I'm excited for the upcoming blog development. In January, I will move to Germany for a year-long assignment and the blog should take a slight shift. From serious navel-gazing to travel and living abroad. Hopefully.
But that's where we're headed. Where have we been?
In the 35 days since I created the blog, there have been 22 posts (not including this one or this week's weekly roundup):
- Two were reactions to world events, including the Paris attacks and the recent shooting in California.
- My biggest chunk is related to books, movies, and TV - oh my, including a discussion on Hamilton, two posts on King's Dark Tower series, an overview of Master of None, a review of Royal We, and a love letter to Leonardo DiCaprio.
- A handful of posts on workplace shenanigans, including an introduction to Penis Validation, colleagues' thoughts on stretch assignments, ideas for dealing with Negative Nancies, and a few opinions on being liked.
- The final grab bag, including ruminations on being home for the holidays, comparisons of royalties and Kardashians, the points of baby and wedding showers, and where our tax dollars really go.
I'm not surprised on the emphasis on pop culture-related things though I probably expected more posts related to politics or being single in this day and age and all that.
It's nice to have a summary of the past month. I've tried writing stuff a half dozen times over the past ten years, ranging from novel attempts to journals to Google drive docs that led nowhere. I'm optimistic about the blog - there's money involved, so I'm more likely to actually do something with it, and other people, so I'm more likely to put effort in (there are three whole people besides the entire anonymous internet that know about this - my mentor, my mom, and my work BFF Renuka).
While we are off to a decent start, I'm really excited to see where this goes. Especially as I move to Germany and start to document living abroad and travel and all that jazz. Here we go!