My 2022 Goals & Visions
In addition to the concrete goals I’m working towards this year, I’m also sharing the vision for why the goals exist in the first place. I find a vision to be much more motivating than a goal, but a goal to be much easier to act upon than a vision.
My 2022 Vision
I called 2022 my “Year of the Worksheet.” I wish I had made worksheets my priority sooner. This was one of my most prolific and profitable years yet. I published more products and produced more creative work than any other year before and I worked less hours than I ever have before in order to be present to the family. The focus on worksheets also let me to make connections with new people. It helped me stand out for a unique skill instead of being just any other author.
559,542/1,000,000 words for kids (A part of my #1millionwordsforkids goal) (+3,887 words)
I see a kid putting into action something they read in a book. They are trying to overcome a challenge in a new way with a positive attitude. She surprises her parents and explains where she learned it: that book by Jared Dees. (Or: that worksheet…that video…that exercise with Jared Dees.)
780/1,000 Resources (Videos/Worksheets) for Members of The Religion Teacher (+18 resources)
I see a teacher showing The Religion Teacher videos and using worksheets that get kids thinking and praying in class. They experience something with those resources that keeps them thinking the rest of the day: an encounter with Christ. The teacher returns to lesson planning feeling less overwhelmed and more excited to teach the next class.
7/24 Books Read (+4 books including Lonesome Dove, The Killer Angels, The Psychology of Money, and Food Rules)
I see myself talking to friends and family about some of my favorite books.
9/100 Non-fiction Books Started & Skimmed (+2 The Psychology of Money and Food Rules)
I see myself talking about non-fiction books on social media and during interviews because these books helped me improve my life and create my own work.
50/73 Books of the Bible read from beginning to end (+0 books read)
I see myself reading the daily readings with a new perspective remembering the experience of reading the entire Bible.
9/100 30-minute workouts (+4 workouts)
I see myself working out often and having more energy and happiness around my kids and at the computer for work.
20/200 word vocabulary to learn American Sign Language (+9 words)
I see my son and I having conversations in sign language during our one-on-one time during the day.
How I Spent My Time in February 2022
- 11:10 – The Religion Teacher Email & Customer Service
- 5:32 – Morning Preview
- 5:30 – Daily Review
- 3:43 – 15-Minute Stations of the Cross for Kids Launch
- 4:12 – The Religion Teacher’s Church History Worksheet Collection
- 3:48 – The Religion Teacher January 2022 Membership Launch
- 2:38 – The Religion Teacher Member Videos and Graphic Organizers
- 2:37 – Personal Finances and Estate Planning
- 2:30 – The Religion Teacher’s Virtues Worksheet Collection
- 2:15 – The Religion Teacher Newsletter
Total Time: 62:23 Hours
February 2022 Highlights & Lessons Learned
One Worksheet a Day
As you can see in the vision above, I’m calling 2022 my “Year of the Worksheet.” This means I’m focusing on worksheets first before books, fiction, videos, courses, speaking, or anything else that I could create.
With this vision comes a simple habit: one worksheet a day.
My daily writing word count is much lower than the times I’m writing books. I’m working less hours than I did in the last couple of years. Yet, I feel more productive than ever. Last month I published a collection of Beatitudes worksheets and I have three more collections completed or almost ready for publication on prayers, virtues, and Church history.
I’m keeping the process pretty simple. I create a draft of worksheet every day, then publish each individual worksheet for members of The Religion Teacher later. Then I compile the worksheets into a collection that can be purchased separately. People can either become a member (if they haven’t already joined) or buy the product separately.
I set a goal to have 1,000 resources available for members. I set a big goal thinking it would take years. I’m on pace right now to pass 1,000 by the end of 2022.
I just cannot express how powerful it is to work on just one page of your project a day. Just one page a day and you will find yourself amazed by how much you’ve accomplished.
The web app, Notion, has been a big help in organizing all of these worksheets:
Between books and products, I launch a lot of things throughout the year. To be honest, I get overwhelmed by all the things I could do to launch a new book. I used to create a list of my “Dream 100” people to contact for outreach about a new book. That list was so big that it was too intimidating to tackle and I ended up doing very little outreach at all.
So, for the launch of 15-Minute Stations of the Cross for Kids I’m keeping it simple:
- Set up KDP ads on Amazon.
- Share about the creative process on social media.
- Update existing pages focused on Lent and include the book in newsletters.
- A simple outreach goal: at least five interviews.
So far, things are going well now that the book is available. People are saying great things about it.
Serendipitous Social Media
I probably downplay the usefulness of social media too much. I spend almost all my time creating content for my website, YouTube, and the email newsletters, that there is very little mental energy left to think creatively about social media.
Nevertheless, I forced myself to put out a few extra posts this month especially around the launch of my new book.
Like everyone else, I overemphasize the importance of likes and shares.
The truth is, as a consumer, I like and share very few posts, but that doesn’t mean I don’t read and remember them.
The tweet above about the new book led to a couple of radio interviews. I did not expect that.
Plus, a number of friends congratulated me on the new book because they saw a post on social media.
Other friends mentioned posts I shared in face-to-face conversation, but they didn’t interact online.
Therefore, I’m going to try to post more–not for the likes or shares–but for the serendipity of social media. You do not know who will read something you share or what it will do for them. You may never know.
And even if it doesn’t help someone else, the act of creating a post can help you the most.
Almost no one saw or liked this tweet, but I’ve thought about it almost every day since: