My 3rd January Anniversary and 2012 New Year’s Resolutions

Three years ago on January 5th I was handed an opportunity. Yes, three years ago, I rose up from my cubicle and walked out of a consulting office into the unknown. My corporate life ended and I haven’t looked back.

looking through 2012 glasses...

Each year I write a post to mark the occasion. (Read my January Anniversary and the 2nd January Anniversary posts.) I re-read each post to remind me how far I’ve come, and also to put my goals and resolutions for the new year out there. Last year, 2011, proved to be a year of challenges and miracles. A year definitely filled with adventures. I didn’t complete all my goals, but I made great strides and this year I start fresh. Here goes….

Travel Resolutions

Next Year I'll be on Board

  • Visit a New Country. I didn’t get to a new state last year, but did visit a new country; I visited Guatemala. And this year once again I aim to see another new country.
  •  Take a Cruise. It’s been twenty years since my last cruise, so this year it’s time to once again get on board. I know the industry changed drastically since then and I look forward to learning how firsthand. This year I will learn is the “Cruise” for me?
  • Write my Bucket List. I didn’t make my travel bucket list last year, so I decided to put it on the list again. However, this year I decided to add a new twist.  In 2012 and every year thereafter I will add at least one new item and complete at least two on the list.

Mexico's Famous Pyramids. Resolutions

  • Write Less Posts and Even Better Posts. I set a target for 150 posts last year, and I almost reached it.  (135) Yet, I felt stretched too thin at times. This year I want to make sure I continue to deliver quality to my readers, so expect ~100 posts this year. That’s still 8 per  month.
  • Make Mexico more Prominent and Upgrade the Site.   I plan to make a few cosmetic changes to the site. One definitely involves Mexico. A large portion of my adventures have involved ‘crossing the border’ so it’s time I rearrange my Mexican adventures. It’s time to enable site visitors to easily find what they are looking for when it comes to travel in Mexico. Also, expect enhanced comments, Facebook access, changes to Sunset Sunday, and more.
  • Increase Page Views by 50%.
    Last year I monetized the site and will continue to grow the revenue, but I also learned a few ways to help augment my page views. 1) Use SEO. I plan to focus more on Search Engine Optimization. And don’t worry, I can say with confidence, I will not let it affect my voice, my story, or my message. 2) Promote my subscription services. I haven’t focused here, but I will. Many people could benefit from “stay adventurous” reminders and stories sent directly to them. Remember I write to inspire others to take and make adventure in their lives. And 3) Use Facebook and Stumble Upon. I dabbled in 2011, but I will take a few more simple steps to enable the story reaches more folks.

Writing, Photography, Consulting (Services)

photo published in

  • Raise my Photography to the Next Level. Being selected as an award winning photographer and obtaining a +1 in on my photography put some pretty big smiles on my face last year. I crave more. This year, I’d like to focus on augmenting my skills and even be hired to take photos or at least sell a few.
  •  Add a New, Smart, Revenue Stream.
    I am giving myself creativity here, but I know I’ll need an additional revenue stream in 2012. I didn’t write for free in 2011 which was a step in the right direction.  Now as I strategize and I know I must think BIG. It’s in me. Therefore, I plan to spend some time on a deeper Soul Search first to uncover this new revenue stream.  Maybe it’s photography, maybe it’s something else. We’ll see. (If you have a suggestion, comment. I am all ears.)

surfs up

Fun & Creativity

  • Support & Embrace the Arts. I’ve considered myself an artist ever since I decided to leave the corporate world for a more creative career. And last year, I planned to support other artists even more. I am not sure I did enough. I will this year. Trips to museums, plays, art galleries, book readings, etc… I will spend more time in the creative world. It’s both comforting and inspiring.
  • Paddle out for 12 Surf Sessions. I can’t believe I only logged 3 sessions in the last 15 months. I surfed Mazatlan and I surfed San Blas. Not enough. I recently watched a few surf videos and missed the utter joy of being in the water. Therefore, I will paddle out on average once a month, twelve times this year.
  • Less Anger, More Appreciation. This one might be tough to measure, but I realized when I am frustrated I find myself saying “if s/he would just change…” But, it’s my judgments, not their actions that cause my mood change. I plan to continue to be the change I want to see in the world (as Ghandi instructed) but I will also add a mantra I drafted, “I lovingly appreciate all that is as it is” Simple, yes, but it will put a smile on my face every time.
Well, those are my goals. Bold? Maybe, but as I like to say, I am just staying adventurous. Plus, I learned if you write down your dreams and share them they are ten times more likely to occur. I like those odds, don’t you? If so, feel free to share your resolutions below.
Stay adventurous and Happy New Year 2012,

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  • Melissa Morris

    Congratulations on a great 2011 and best of luck in 2012!


    • Craig Zabransky

      Thanks Melissa, glad to see things are well in the state of New Jersey. Hopefully a few of my surf sessions are at the shore this summer.

      stay adventurous, Craig

      ps – nice avatar. a sunset, you know I am a fan.

  • Jennifer Neily

    Hi Craig – nice blog! I just recently subscribed…have the opportunity to go on a trip for 2 weeks in October – anywhere I want. So have started looking around trying to figure out where…I’ve got my ideas but would love to hear your thoughts. I don’t want a vacation so much as an experience, perhaps even more of an adventure – not sure. It will be my mom and me and she’s in good shape for her age. Top contenders seem to be Thailand (volunteering with the Asian elephants), New Zealand, Galapagos Islands or renting a villa in Italy (Tuscany) and traveling the northern part. My ideas seem to change daily! Ideas? Thanks! Neily

    • Craig Zabransky

      Neily, thanks for the comment and I appreciate the subscription.

      As for your trip, regardless of where you go it will be an adventure, a mother-daughter adventure and that’s probably most important. Plus you listed amazing options too. What a great trip, you’ll have a blast, you can’t go wrong. Three things I’d suggest,
      1) I wouldn’t put pressure on the where, like’s it’s your last trip, it’s not.
      2) I’d consider where do you want to go most, what is the trip you must take, visualize it… and then make sure the weather and activities will be as you see it in October.
      3) And remember it’s not where other people think is a great destination or adventure / it’s what you and your mom think. Pick that one.

      Finally, if you are really interested, I am working on a questionnaire to help people select their ‘ideal’ adventure. It’s in early test, but I’ll be happy to share it with you (or anyone). Just email me. craig @ stayadvenutrous . com.

      stay adventurous, Craig

      • Jennifer Neily

        Thanks so much for your response Craig. I know regardless where we go it will be fabulous. I will send you an email for the questionnaire!

  • charu

    Craig, these are really solid and achievable resolutions. My post (similar to yours–funny!) is coming soon. I’m absolutely certain you will increase visibility for Mexico, my friend. For sure!

    • Craig Zabransky

      Gracias Charu. I look forward to your post too. In fact let’s set a half-way session to review our progress over a cocktail? Sound good mi amiga? We can keep each other accountable.

      stay adventurous, Craig

  • The Chairman

    Amigo, let’s put a May, June, July, Aug, and Sept. date on the Calendar to Surf the lovely OceanGrove/Asbury Park, NJ. My goal for this year is to treat myself to one afternoon every month to do something I love for me. Surfings a nice start!

  • Craig Zabransky

    Chairman, now that’s a plan. Let’s do it.
    stay adventurous, Craig

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  • rebecca

    great goals and congrats on doing this full time