Goals are good, so review them

success arrowI figure that it’s been almost two months since I wrote my 2010 goals out for all to see, so I decided that today would be an appropriate time to check in on them. After all what good is it to write down your goals when you never review them. It makes it much easier to ignore them, that’s for sure. That’s not what I want to do. I made them to move forward and make some progress.

So “on with the show” as they say. A review of my 2010 personal goals begins:

  • Raise $20,000 for the Tom Baker Cancer Centre & Alberta Cancer Foundation through the 2nd Annual Tight ‘n Bright event to be held March 20, 2010.
    Well we got nowhere near it. In all honesty I haven’t added up all the numbers yet because I’m a little depressed on how low it is. I mean locally we can raise over $20k for something like Haiti relief, but when it’s something in our own backyard we tend to feel there’s no importance. This years event has caused me to re-think the model for next year—if we have a third-annual. Check the Tight ‘n Bright website for final dollar figures…soon.
  • Generate $80,000 through legal online activities like affiliate sales, products & services by September 15, 2010. Roughly 236 days remain, so that would equate to $338.98 per day…if I start making cash NOW!

    To date I’ve made $203.26 from online affiliate sales. Roughly 155 days remain until September 15 so that would mean an average of $514.82 starting today. It’s possible and totally achievable I know for sure. I just launched a site geared towards the Adobe Creative Suite 5 release that will generate some sales. I’ve also been working through the Shoemoney System and getting even more ideas. If you feel it’s too pricey for you, then why not try the FREE ShoemoneyX out for a while – like the 12 weeks it is?!

  • Run a full marathon under 4 hours by December 15, 2010.
    Still working on this. I met with a guy I’m calling my running coach and he gave me some great advice and training tips. Just a few days ago I went for a 10 mile run in about 1:50. I haven’t run 10 miles since the start of this year. I’ve registered for the Manitoba Marathon’s Half at the end of June and am contemplating the Calgary Half Marathon as well. I haven’t targeted my full for the year, but worst case I fly to Honolulu for a few days and run there again.
  • Launch BlueBinder by March 1, 2010 with full e-comm capabilities.
    Can you say nope. Haven’t touched it. I think about it A LOT but haven’t touched it.
  • Launch Phase 1 of OoberScoop by February 1, 2010.

    Sort of, kind of, but not really. You can sign up to get an invite right now and that’s about it…but the development stuff I’ve got looks good too. My business partner and I are reconvening this week to set some firm goals around it.

  • Launch Workshops Everywhere by February 1, 2010 to the Calgary market as detailed in Phase 1 of the plan.

    It launched. I think it was closer to March 1, 2010, but it still launched. Now we’ve observed a number of its weaknesses and are looking at a developer to completely customize the solution for what we need. Watch out for Phase 2 soon.

  • Travel to three new destinations by December 31, 2010.
    It’s quite surprising that I haven’t traveled much of anywhere in 2010. I went to Vancouver in February for the opening weekend of the Olympic games and to Winnipeg to see my family as well…but that’s it. Definitely nowhere new, though we are talking about Turks & Caicos or Barbados in October, so either of those would be new.
  • Speak at a minimum of one conference by November 30, 2010.
    This one hasn’t really been a focus at all. I’m targeting PubCon in Las Vegas in November, but who knows what things will come about. Honestly when I launch the above sites, there’s a strong chance that I’ll definitely be speaking about something at PubCon.
  • Support and love Monica, Ava and the other members of my family on a daily basis.
    I think I’m on target for this one. Sometimes probably over achieving.
  • Help Monica launch her site to the best of my abilities around her time line.
    It’s back on the radar again and I’m so happy about it. Still waiting and I can’t share too much, but you know once it’s launched it’s going to kick ass.
  • Blog a minimum of five times per week through to June 30, 2010.
    Ummm…yeah. That hasn’t happened really now has it?!
  • Live everyday and enjoy and appreciate what I have.
    I’d say for the most part I do this regularly. I still complain about some things (like work, lack of cash, etc) but I try to not dwell on them nearly as much as I used to.

After looking at the above, it’s actually not as depressing as I thought it was. There’s still plenty of time left in 2010, 262 days or so, to make it an amazing year. I’ll review the review in a month or two…on a casual basis to see how I’ve done again. Until then I’ll probably waste more time building out sites, trying new things, and just genuinely trying to enjoy life. Thanks in advance for reading and for any comments you feel like leaving.

Creative Commons License photo credit: nDevilTV

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How cancer has affected me

This post is going to be hard to write. I can already tell. I’m chock full of emotion already just thinking about it. I apologize now if it doesn’t quite flow correctly, but it’s what you get. There’s almost 25 years of thought in this 500 word post…so pay attention and do what’s right.

Twenty-five years ago I was 6 years old. I had a younger brother Robert who was two and a half…and that was as old as he would ever get. I remember that cold Winnipeg winter day on February 14, 1985 (yes Valentine’s Day) when I was taken home from elementary school, like it happened yesterday. Walking home with my grandparents who were in from out of town visiting. As I came around the corner I could see my house and the cars that lined the road way. I knew something was drastically wrong. I ran like I’ve never run before and flew through the door of my parents house. It was then I realized just what had happened. Robert had been sick almost since he was born and spent a lot of time at the hospital. I even spent a lot of time at the hospital but nothing like my parents did. Having an amazing daughter of my own now, I have no clue how they did it. They were so strong and for that alone I am blessed. Luckily we had good close family friends I could stay with. As a six year-old it was fun going to sleepovers at first. After weeks of sleepovers though, they became less and less fun.

Since losing Robert to Medulloblastoma, I’ve lost two grandparents, a great uncle, two great aunts and several family friends. I have friends who have battled and survived. Even friends who have beaten it multiple-times and still lost the battle one final time. There’s no doubt in my mind how much of an impact cancer has had on my life…and I’ve been fortunate enough to never have had it.

Honestly, I remember the good times and great impact these people have had on my life. It’s because of these people and even those whom I’ve never met, nor may have the opportunity to meet, that Tight ‘n Bright is around. It’s a reason to party. A reason to raise funds and awareness. Most importantly though, it is a reason to celebrate life! A life we are each fortunate to currently have and the lives of those who we’ve lost. As with our first Tight ‘n Bright party in 2009, our goal for this annual event is to raise funds in excess of $20,000 to go directly to the Tom Baker Cancer Centre in Calgary. We, myself and the team involved, would like you to join us for a fun filled, theme evening on Saturday, March 20, 2010 for the Second Annual Tight ‘n Bright – it’s where a party can help find a cure.

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Discovering Google Apps with @sarahstanley

Today I had a brief chat on Twitter with the ever amazing Sarah Stanley surrounding a technical piece of her RunRideInspire.com website. Most of it took place behind the scenes through direct message, but in the end I believe it was of assistance.

You see part of what Sarah is looking for are Inspire Ambassadors (act quickly by sending an email to RunRideInspire@gmail.com if you’d like to be one). What got me thinking was that there was a domain name intact already, but she was essentially promoting Gmail. Many businesses do this, and I just don’t understand why – whether it’s Gmail, Yahoo, Hotmail or their internet provider. The list goes on. With domain names starting out so cheap now from a place like GoDaddy.com there’s no excuse to NOT have a company branded domain name. In addition to that, even though GoDaddy.com does hosting, you can easily get your email handled for FREE through Google Apps.

This is where Sarah and I were at a disconnect. Being that Run Ride Inspire is charity, “every dollar counts” she stated. And I agree. Running a fund raising initiative of my own (I need to update it this week), I know that every penny does truly count. I’ve been using Google Apps with my domain names for a few years now and have been fortunate enough to never spend a dime on the amazing service. In fact I just recently switched two separate clients over to the service. I could go off on why it’s a great choice, but there’s already plenty out there on Google as to why it’s a good choice…and even why it’s not.

I was on my iPhone but determined to help Sarah out I did a quick search in Safari. It started to become clear as to why she didn’t want to use the runrideinspire.com on Google Apps for fear of having to pay $50 per user per year. Typical marketing. On the initial screen, you’re presented with two options: Business or Education.

Google Apps Signup Screen

Google Apps - the Hidden GoldOn the following screen they present the nice, pretty blue button to begin a free trial. But if you look closely enough, there are some boring text links under the button. This is in fact where the hidden gold is in using Google Apps with your own custom domain name…for FREE.

When comparing the Google Apps Standard Edition (i.e. the FREE version) to the Premiere version, there’s not a lot of difference that the standard, average user would ever want or use. You still get Gmail, Calendar, Docs & Sites. I’m up to about 7GB of storage space in my App Mail account of which I’ve used about 50% over the last few years…and my business handles lots of large files through email. The rest of the ‘business’ features, controls, support and reliability aren’t really required. I use my hosted Gmail with my iPhone without issue. In fact, it works better then my normal Gmail account does…so there!Google Apps Comparison: Premiere vs Standard

As much as I love my Shannon Poole (who yes, does love me), I’m happy that Sarah at least sees some value in me.

So now my question to you is do you use Google Apps and if so, which version? Is Sarah making the right choice by moving (I hope) her email from Gmail to her own domain name? Let me know in the comments.

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Check it out – 2009 event!

Well it’s been a while since I’ve written anything here, but that’s because I’ve been working on Tight ‘n Bright – a fundraiser for the Alberta Cancer Foundation and Tom Baker Cancer Centre in Calgary. I’m working with a great group of people to develop the event, plan it out and execute it on March 21, 2009. It’s the brain child of me and my brother initially with a whole bunch of other people being tossed in to it as well. Check out tightnbright.com for more information on the event, ticket sales, sponsors, donors and more. And by the way, 100% of proceeds go directly to the charity. We’re hoping to keep costs as low as possible (like $0 to be honest) so that we can push more funds to charity. The goal is to exceed $20,000 and we feel it is going to be very easily done.

If you or someone you know has something they can offer as a donation, please don’t hesitate to contact me and let me know. All that information is on the Tight ‘n Bright website. See you on March 21 for sure!

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