I set yearly goals as an exercise in focus, motivation, clarity, and purpose. I find that I also set them to empty my brain of all the random things I think about and want to do, someday, somehow.

It’s a cleansing feeling to get it all out of my head and onto a list. Plus, there’s a jolt of excitement in revisiting the list toward the end of the year and seeing what kind of person I was when I put the goals together. Did I really want to own a pet? What version of me thought winning a card tournament was possible?

No doubt there will be more curiosities from my list of 2018 goals when I review them later this year. But there’s also no doubting the good feeling I get from putting the list together regardless.

See previous years: 2013201420152016, 2017

Like last year, I’ve chosen three main goals and a series of smaller goals.

My three main goals for 2018

1. Post 25 articles to a new blog

I’ve realized that some of my happiest times at work or play were when I was running a blog: either doing my own thing with my sports blog or contributing to Buffer’s social media blog. Lately I’ve been inspired by many, many new blogs in many, many different shapes and sizes. I think it’d be fun to get back into it somehow.

2. Be a guest on 25 podcasts

I much prefer the solitude and anonymity of talking on a podcast versus the public and obvious means of speaking at events or conferences. I’d like to do podcasts more. There’re several benefits: promoting Buffer, promoting myself, coming up with an outreach strategy to discover 25 podcasts who would even be interested in me. Plus, I’d get to use my big microphone, which always makes me feel hip.

3. Record a song on the piano

I don’t technically know how to record songs on my piano, so this goal is quite aspirational. My thinking: it will take quite a bit of work to get good enough to play a song worth recording. Supposedly, I’ll need to know my chords and scales (not to mention the things I don’t know that I don’t know) and be able to string together enough various noises to sound halfway decent. Stay tuned!

(Below is my previous best attempt at recorded music, thanks to a foolproof iPad app …)

Here is everything else I might like to accomplish this year and beyond:

The rest of my 2018 goals

Five-year goals

  • Cook every recipe in Salt Fat Acid Heat (2023)
  • Give 10 percent of earnings to charity (2023)
  • Play in a card game tournament (2023)
  • Make money from a blog (2023)
  • Go whitewater rafting (2023)
  • Go skiing with Evan (2023)
  • Pay off the house (2024)
  • Visit England (2023)

Anytime goals

  • Own a dog (∞)
  • Be good enough at photography that I can shoot a football game (∞)
  • Volunteer at the local animal shelter (∞)
  • Kayak the San Juan Islands (∞)
  • Start my own magazine (∞)
  • Ski at 20 new places (∞)
  • Visit Iceland (∞)

Bonus: To-stop-doing list

  • Don’t eat refined or processed sugar


Here’s how I did on my 2017 goals

  • ✔︎ Send at least five emails to the newsletter list I’ve built from my website
  • Learn 10 new songs on the piano
  • Ski Sun Valley
  • Subscribe to a sermon series on Soundcloud
  • ✔︎ Write Lindsay a poem
  • ✔︎ Build and ship a WordPress theme that people can download at WordPress.org
  • ✔︎ Come up with 3 new passwords
  • ✔︎ Keep doing the 7 sacred pauses, daily
  • Find a professional mentor and chat monthly
  • ✔︎ Listen to an audiobook / e-book with Whispersync
  • ✔︎ Complete a Treehouse course
  • ✔︎ Bike the foothills x1
  • Finish a Gomix course
  • ✔︎ Write the first chapter to three new books
  • ✔︎ Get published on BuzzFeed
  • ✔︎ Attend a concert

Five-year goals

  • Give to charity: Pets, brain cancer, Seattle Pacific University (2022)
  • Go whitewater rafting (2022)
  • Go through The Dangerous Book for Boys with Evan (2022)
  • Win a game of bridge against real people (2022)
  • Play in a Hearts tournament (2022)
  • ✔︎ Do intermittent fasting more consistently (2022)

Anytime goals

  • Volunteer at the local animal shelter (∞)
  • Own a dog (∞)
  • Kayak the San Juan Islands (∞)
  • Ski at 20 new places (∞)

Bonus: To-stop-doing list

  • Eat refined or processed sugar (w/ one cheat day each week)
Posted by:Kevan Lee

VP of marketing currently living in Boise, Idaho. I work with the lovely folks at Buffer. You can join my email list to get an inside look at marketing and branding and team-building in tech.

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