So, What Now?: Christopher's Top Ten Goals for 2022

It is going to take a few weeks adjusting to the site no longer just being my own personal playground, but rather a site that has another writer (Hi again, Scott Martin!). The plan is to shift to a stronger movie and pop culture focus that will eventually lead to it being deemed a 'professional' site. But I also recognize I've been doing this blog for over a decade now, and my current readers sort of expect the more personal posts on here too.

So, this would be one of those type of articles, and this is my annual piece where I share some of my plans and goals and dreams that I hope to achieve this year. Now, I'm going to be honest that this list of top ten goals has some regular culprits on here, because either they are long-term goals that take time or goals that I failed in the past but desire enough that it is worth taking another shot.

I also completely realize that posting my dreams and goals on here is a little self-aggrandizing and borderline obnoxious, but my hope is that some readers have stuck around long enough that they have some connection with me and care at some level about my ambitions and career. If you do, then this is for you. For those that actually are friends and family, then this is also a way to keep me accountable this year. A thing that the lack of frequency on this site in 2021 proves that I need sometimes.

Anyway, preamble is boring, so here we go!

1. Ensure my family and friends know that they are loved. I want Emily to know without a doubt she has a husband that adores her and is deeply in love with her. I want my kids to know without any doubt that they have a father who is proud of them and loves spending time with them. I want my friends and family members to be aware how much I appreciate them and what they mean to my life. This year I want to focus on doing things that really connect with those that I love and taking the time to pour into their lives. This is without a doubt the most valuable and important goal. It is one that I will continue to strive to be better at every single year.

2. Live in the moment and be grateful for the now. There is a lot that I want to achieve this year. I have big dreams of expanding and growing my career and business, but it can't be all about looking to the future. If I am playing with my kids, then I want to be completely focused on enjoying that time with them. If I am on a date with Emily, then it is all about making that moment special. I want to enjoy and revel in that moment that I am living at that exact time. I also have so much to be grateful about from this past year, and I will have so much to be grateful about in this coming year. I want to focus on that. We can't be happy with what will come if we can't see the greatness in what we already have.

3. Join the Online Film Critics Society. This has been on here in previous list of goals. And considering how few are in the association and the height of requirement to get in, it may not actually be achieved this year. But I can most definitely do the work to get myself much closer to this dream. The big thing is to write far more movie reviews this year, and continue to push myself to make them as entertaining, insightful, thoughtful, honest and original as possible.

4. Land a literary agent. I would love to say publish a novel or book on here, but the actual publication usually takes at least a year after final draft is sent in. But finishing a manuscript and pitching to an agent, then landing an agent seems like an ambitious goal that could be achieved. The key is finishing a manuscript and taking the time to make sure it is up to the quality of being sellable. So, you know, having less grammatical errors than on this site.

5. Read a book a month. This has been a goal that has appeared previous years too. It is also a goal that can be achieved and still remain a goal every year. Though if I do achieve it this year, I'll likely double my reading goals for next year.

6. Take chances. I was going to write 'Fail more' because if I'm failing often then it likely means I am taking way more chances and pushing myself out of my comfort zone. I also wanted to try to keep my list more positive, so I reframed the wording. I recognize I take less chances and stay in my comfort zone due to a fear of failing, but the most successful people have failed often due to willingness to be daring. My hope is pushing myself will allow for more rewarding and interesting creative projects.

7. Weigh around 170 pounds. My weight isn't everything when it comes to health. But if I lose my weight by doing things like eating healthier, excising more and staying active then I'll be in much better shape. I am going to be 45 years old this November, so it is probably time to make that a priority. For those that are curious, I'd need to lose around 20 pounds to achieve this goal.

8. Grow my readers and listeners. This is year that I want to put in the work to drastically expand the readership of this site. I would love to see The Movie Breakdown make lists on top movie podcasts. I also have some plans for videos too, so that is another area where I want to grow an audience. I don't have total control over if my audience expands, but I can focus on creating the best work as possible and getting much better at cracking the code when it comes to promotion and social media. 

9. Write something that goes viral. The tricky part though is not writing something with the intent of it going viral, because that tends to create something soulless, manufactured and forced. I want to create honest and heartfelt prose that I am passionate about with the hope and desire it means and connects with others.

10. Become a better photographer. The problem of making writing my career is that it is no longer my hobby or the thing that I use to unwind. My plan is to do a lot more photography this year and get much better at it, and have it be my new hobby when I am not writing.  

What are your goals for 2022?