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Karen Shepherd on Resolutions for Fall

My name is Karen Shepherd and I have had a wonderful summer. I went to Europe, visited with friends, read a trashy novel, and learned to make gazpacho. But September is coming and I need to recommit and refocus. I know that lots of people make New Year’s resolutions; but for me, the timing is off. It is September 1 that represents my time to start anew, feeling refreshed and ready to dive-in to whatever awaits.

Hot Tip: Look at your personal life cycle and think about when it best to set your own resolutions. It doesn’t need to be once a year, but perhaps it is seasonal. At the beginning of the summer, I set personal resolutions regarding what I was going to do to take advantage of the unexpected free time and not just fritter it away. I stuck to them, and now my gazpacho is world class after 10 tries and lots of taste tests.

Hot Tip: Make sure that your resolutions include something you love along with those things that might be less appealing.

Rad Resource: Here are my resolutions for fall:

  • Conscientiously pursue opportunities to weave networks: I have been reading the work of June Holley, Jack Ricchiuto, and Valdis Krebs about network weaving (see their blog) – building strong connections among people with common interests and complimentary capacities. I want to planfully evidence in myself the characteristics of natural network weavers in order to strengthen the causes and projects I work with. In search of monitoring data, I’m committing to checking in weekly to document what I have done to strengthen these networks.
  • Set time for my own professional development: I have articles to read, training to attend, webinars to watch, podcasts to hear and I need to get and stay caught up. I need to write and reflect on my writing, even if it is only for my personal journal, in order to process all that I hear. I need to be concrete and have written one hour each week into my planner.
  • Create and stick to a master schedule: This is the hard one. This summer I learned to use Remember the Milk, a project management tool. I am systematically breaking down my large projects into manageable milestones and entering them into RTM for tracking. I’m committing to checking and updating RTM each morning and using it for the next four months before I assess its value. I know that project management is a personal shortcoming and my fingers are crossed regarding improvement in this area.
  • Salsa: Having mastered gazpacho, I’m in search of the means to creating the perfect salsa (suggestions welcome).

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  • Jan Hogle · August 17, 2011 at 11:12 am

    Hi Karen — After living in southern NM for 3 yrs, I learned the simplest best salsa that I have continued to make, but it all depends on what you like. One key is letting it sit for a few hrs or overnight after you make it for the flavors to meld. The ingredients are too simple — fresh tomatoes, red onions, green chilis (and/or green peppers). The seasoning is coriander or cumin, salt & pepper. That’s it! You can add some red pepper or jalapenos to make it hotter.


  • Kelly Hannum · August 17, 2011 at 11:01 am

    If you want to learn more about weaving networks, the Leadership Learning Community is offering a FREE Webinar called “Are You a Network Weaver?” featuring June Holley on Tuesday, August 23, 2011 11:00 AM – 12:00 PM PDT.
    You can register at:


  • Admin comment by Susan Kistler · August 17, 2011 at 5:46 am

    Karen, Thanks for sharing!

    Check back in this winter and tell us how your Remember the Milk trial run went.

    Salsa? Fresh mangoes and lime balanced by a good purple onion are my favorite starting point, with lots of fresh tomatoes of course.


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