I remember a while ago I was reading a book (can't remember which one) where the guy was making the case that you should take action on things immediately once you've decided that you are going to undertake them. Since that's an awkward statement, his point was, for example, if you're going to quit smoking - start right now. If you're going to start running, start today. Because he believed that there were certain things people do to make it easier to fail. The dude had one of those Cortesian - burn all the boats philosophies. His thinking went something like “If I tell myself I'm going to start tomorrow, within less than 24 hours, tomorrow is going to be today - and if you are capable of starting today - then why not do it?” Sounds like motivational BS but I'm not doing it justice - his point was that all the wanting in the world isn't worth squat unless you take action on it and the longer you wait to get started, the less likely it is to ever happen - too many things you didn't factor in will take priority and your goal will get popped off of the stack.
This is my third pass at learning “Patterns” and it's going a little easier. I tried reading the GoF book but it might as well be written in Martian b/c while I can read it, I have a mental block or something because absorption isn't there. So my first goal of the new year (starting three days ago) is to get proficient with at least 20 Data Access Patterns. I've found that repetitively coding stuff and stepping through it can teach you how almost anything works - and that's fully what I plan to do.
My next goal is to have a full command of all of the new ADO.NET 2.0 Features BEFORE the new framework is released. Made a lot of progress so far but have a long way to go.
I want to be able to build a fairly sophisticated Sharepoint portal without “Having” to look for help. That's not to say that I'd ever want to build anything without referring to some stuff I've read - but if I know I can do it if I had to - I'll be where I want to be.
Ditto for Biztalk -
I want to be able to run 10 miles comfortably.
I want to be able to bench press 225lbs for 10 reps.
I want to learn at least 200 more words that I don't already know.
I want to read at least 50 new books next year (although based on most years, that's a pretty lame goal).
I want to focus a lot more on architecture and be able to whip up complex solutions, with REAL UML diagrams, correclty and quickly.
List will evolve but for the time being those are the short term goals.