Leveling Up, Life Balance & #TheEnlightment
2017 is right around the corner and even though you wouldn’t believe it by the babyface that greets you on the home page of this very site, I’ve been doing this “real life” thing for a decade now.
Since I graduated college in 2006, I’ve had my share of wins throughout my career.
Keepin’ it 100 Alert: What follows is not me pulling a JJ Watt and humblebragging for the sake of humblebragging. I swear I’m going somewhere with this.
I moved into a regional manager-like position fresh out of school. I played a key role in the launch of a VERY expensive website refresh at the age of 24. I launched a sports blog that has netted me a decent amount of coin and moderate recognition. I picked up a dream gig at Hudl based on what I know instead of who I know.
All things considered, life’s been good to me career wise. Am I satisfied? Not. One. Bit.
You can ask Mrs. H but I’m always wanting more out of my career. However, the combination of the post-Inbound conference high, all the personal development talks I’ve had with my direct reports, and me really thinking about what I want to be doing when my 1.5-year-old son turns 18 has me feeling some type of way in regards to maximizing my personal and professional skill sets.
The tl;dr version of what I’m trying to do moving forward is this: Systematically do things that will help me level up mentally, spiritually and physically each day.
Sounds simple, right? Well, given everything that we have to balance in our lives, personal development plans can go off the rails fairly quickly.
The Struggle is Real
How many of you have struggled with the balancing act presented here? (Hint: If you didn’t raise your hand you’re a damn liar…or you don’t raise your hand when presented questions on blogs.)
The entrepreneur's dilemma:
Maintaining friendships. Building a great company. Spending time w/family. Staying fit. Getting sleep.
— Randi Zuckerberg (@randizuckerberg) December 9, 2011
We all know time is a finite resource, but the word on the street is that having a plan that can drive developmental routines is pretty crucial to actually getting better at whatever it is you’d like to get better at.
I love to categorize things, so before I developed the framework that is going to drive my personal development I decided to come up with the focus areas all my tasks, routines, and milestones will spin up to.
Here’s what I decided on:
- – Family
- – Career
- – Health
The “Family” category involves me being a better friend, husband and father. The “Career” category involves me developing skill sets that will ensure I’ll be in great shape career wise in 20 years (e.g., design, writing, multi-media production, networking). Finally, the “Health” category deals with me making myself presentable and maintaining my well-being for the long-haul.
Thinking of a Master Plan
For each area of focus, I came up with tasks I want to accomplish on a recurring basis.
To fine-tune my writing skills and keep my personal brand top-of-mind, I decided I need publish at least three blogs a week on either hudl.com/blog, nocoastbias.com or derekjhernandez.com.
To ensure I unwind and level up my skill set at the same time, I added a recurring task to develop my DJ and audio production skills.
To stay focused, I pulled quotes and clips from people I admire and dropped them into an Evernote note that I will review on a daily basis. Here’s one of those clips:
My “Personal Development” notebook is filled to the brim with tasks, goals and motivational notes, but I hope to shape a consistent routine in the next few months.
Brand This Sucker
I’m a marketer through and through, so of course I decided to not only brand this personal development “campaign”, but also come up with a hashtag for this effort.
Since I feel like I have clarity in terms of where I want to go, who I want to be and what I need to do, I decided to christen this personal venture “The Enlightenment”. Clever? Hardly, but I dig it and that’s all that matters!
Be on the lookout for updates on my progress, more career-oriented blogs on this site and a grip of social media posts with the hashtag #theenlightenment.