New Year Goals: 2012

Amy Coffin over at WeTree Genealogy Blog and Denise Levenick at The Family Curator outlined goals for themselves for 2011 and each recently posted their year-end progress reports.  The idea seems to have caught on in the geneablogging community and for good reason.

I’ve never been one for New Years Resolutions.  All the important changes I’d ever want to make would be lifestyle changes which are more likely to stick when done gradually and thoughtfully.  Plus, it doesn’t take a statistician to see that the gym is always a madhouse the month of January but by February, most of those people have abandoned their own resolutions and you can hear crickets in the cardio room.  An arbitrary start date of 1 Jan seems doomed to failure.

But a goal for a New Year seems like a different beast.  We all need goals.  The ones that have floated around the genealogy blogs have been inspiring. I’ll take inspiration any day.  So here are some goals I want to carry out for my personal genealogy this year.

  • Writing:  I’m not a prolific writer, and for assorted reasons (an old RSI injury and a 4yo son), I never will be.  Still, I’d like to post at least one blog post per month, and start writing bios of key people in my tree.  If at the end of 2012, I have added 12 blog posts and written 4 bios, I will consider this accomplished.
  • Research: There are so many items on this to-do list.  And with two trips already planned to Salt Lake City, I think I have a good shot at making serious headway.  In my tree, I want to confirm/deny kinship of Emma Phinney to her probable father, Philander C Phinney, a Civil War veteran (his pension file is the key document I hope to get to accomplish this goal).  Secondly, I intend to confirm/deny the identity of Ephraim Richmond, aka The Patient, including obtaining his probate file and finding out if my Ephraim is directly related to a more well-established Ephraim Richmond of Litchfield County, Connecticut.
  • Technology: I must use my iPad2 more effectively.  It has been drastically underused since I bought it when Steve Jobs passed away, but I know I can do better.  I will attend MacWorld at the end of January and Rootstech a week later, so by my April SLC research trip, I should have a lean but mean array of apps installed to aid my research and general time-management.  If I end the year using the iPad more than my desktop or even my laptop, I’ll consider it a big win, but equality in usage would be enough for me to consider the goal accomplished.

Of course these are personal goals, not professional, though they may play into more professional pursuits.  And I have a lot more I could list, but I like having realistic and quantifiable criteria for my first public attempt at this.

Did you write out your own goals for 2012?  In the comments, share them or links to your own blog post on them.  I’d love to read more.  Happy New Year.

About kimcotton

Professional Genealogist, specializing in 19th & 20th Century U.S. records, particularly California & Connecticut, with a dash of North Western Mexico.