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Gadgets: What Will The Next iPhone Be Able To Do?

12/24/12 - I still don't see the point of an iPad though. Why don't they just make all their laptops touch screen?

-Brought to you by Robert Thorn

Gadgets: Car Stereos
car stereo

12/24/12 - I want satellite radio.

-Brought to you by Robert Thorn

Gadgets: Coffee And Cigarettes
coffee and cigarettes

12/17/12 - I don't even smoke and I can still appreciate this design.

-Brought to you by Robert Thorn

Gadgets: Punch 2013 In The Throat With The NeuYear Calendar
neuyear calendar

12/06/12 - Jesse Phillips, creator of the NeuYear Calendar, has a message for you:

Hey there guy. How was your 2012? Was it awesome? Did you achieve your dreams? … No? Well, did you have a plan? … Didn’t think so.

Making a plan is THE best way to accomplish goals. We’ve all got a great idea, but most of us live day to day, never making plans and never doing anything awesome, languishing in pools of complacency, drowning in a steady wave of the urgent and email.

NeuYear wants to change that. We want to help you think about your year, plan your goals, and do something awesome. NeuYear makes big, beautiful calendars that show the whole year so it’s easier to plan and achieve your goals.

Don’t waste your life! Do something awesome this year. Go to NeuYear.net, buy a big fat calendar, plan your life, and punch 2013 in the THROAT! Hiyah!


Be Intentionally Awesome.


Want some advice...

There is a reason why gyms and fitness centers see a huge uptick in memberships after the first of the year.

Whether it's wanting to lose those last few pounds, or a desire to live a more healthy lifestyle, "joining a gym" has become the quintessential New Year's Resolution. The aspirations, however, don't last very long. On average, most would-be fitness buffs back out of their commitment by March. Oops.

Resolutions, or goals, are powerful motivators–if you stick with them. Unfortunately, so many of us fail to set appropriate goals, or stick with them for such a short time, we never see the results. Books remain half-written, vacations never get planned, and new ideas die on the vine of mind, all because the goal-setting process gets short-circuited.

If you have ever felt the pain of a good goal gone bad, here is a three-step process you can follow to easily plan and accomplish virtually anything.

Pick SMART Goals

One of the most common reasons people or organizations fail at goals is because they aren't SMART. SMART goals look like this:

Specific. SMART goals have a specific end-game in mind. "Save the world," and "cure cancer," are all great goals, but they lack specificity. How do you want to save the world? "I want to reduce litter and pollution on the coastline by my house." Awesome. What kind of cancer do you want to cure? "I want to help focus on children's Leukemia at the Mayo Clinic in St. Paul, MN." Now we're talking. You need to have something to aim at. Being specific with your goals sharpens your sights and increases your chances at success.

Measurable. If your goal is to create buzz for an event, you'll want to have a way to measure "buzz." For instance, let's say last year's event drew 100 participants. A measurable goal would be, "We want to increase participation by 20 percent." This, of course, gives you a number to measure your success with. Make it concrete. Quantify it. Make it measurable.

Attainable. Are you really going to lose 100 lbs. in 24 hours? Good grief, I hope not! Can you quadruple the size of your organization over night? Double your earnings with one tweet? The correct answer, barring an appearance on Oprah, is "no." These goals are not attainable–they're unrealistic and out of reach. Setting SMART goals means that you keep your head in the clouds and your feet on the ground. Setting too high of a goal (i.e., unattainable) is a recipe for disappointment.

Relevant. Does your goal matter? Is it relevant to you, your organization, or business? The Guinness Book of World Records is filled with people doing extraordinary things...that don't matter. Longest competitive handshake? Most chainsaws juggled at once? Longest time standing still? Interesting, but ultimately unhelpful to just about everyone. Make sure your goals are helpful and relevant to you and those around you.

Time-bound. Last but not least, your goals need to have an end date on them. Something like, "We're going to complete the parking lot refinishing project by September 30, 2013." We know what you want to accomplish and by when. Parkinson's Law states that a task will expand to the time allotted to it. Giving yourself a timeframe eliminates procrastination and what I call "the weasel clause." Put a time frame on your goals. Keep everyone accountable and informed.

How Do You Eat an Elephant?

Once you've got your SMART goals defined, it's time to start taking action.

I should warn you, the Land of Action is where goals go to die. I know, it's heartbreaking and sad, but it's reality and sometimes you need to tie Old Yeller up to the tree and, well, you know, end it.

You're going to be different, though. You're going to move from goal creation to goal action. How? By eating the elephant, one bite at a time.

A friend of mine used to paint houses for a living. As you'd imagine, the task of covering 3,500 sq. ft. with latex paint, by yourself, was a bit daunting. But he did it each summer, sometimes knocking out a dozen houses in three months (for the record, that's really fast).

You don't eat an elephant in one bite (figuratively speaking, of course) and you don't paint a house in one brush stroke. The key to his productivity was taking one section at a time. First the west side, then the east side, followed by the south and then the north. The system worked by keeping his stress levels down and productivity up.

You're going to approach your goals the same way. You may have some lofty aspirations for yourself or your organization. Let's say you want to run a marathon. Even those unfamiliar to the world of running know you don't just go and run 26.2 miles without training. Even if you've never laced up jogging shoes before, running a marathon is possible if you start early enough and pace yourself.

Walk one block. Then walk a mile. Now jog a mile. Then another. Gradually add tenths of a mile as you get more comfortable. Before you know it, you're crossing the finish line with enough miles for a 25-minute car ride in the bag.

Practically Achieving Your Goals

Practically speaking, you're going to need some help along the way. Setting goals and keeping a rhythm to achieve them is one thing, grinding through the day-to-day is another.

Here are some tools that will help in your quest for goal domination:

Pomodoro App. You'd be amazed at what you can accomplish in 25 minutes. That's the driving concept behind the Pomodoro technique: focus for 25 minutes, take a five minute breather, repeat until the task is complete. It's so simple, but this helpful timer keeps you on track when your mind wants to wander. Use it in an individual or team setting.

NeuYear Wall Calendar. Something near and dear to my heart is this full-wall calendar our team at NeuYear has created. It shows you the whole year at once, making it easier to layout long-term goals, set future deadlines, and quickly get a flow for the year. Added bonus? This beautifully-designed calendar has bigger squares so you can write more.

Basecamp. Out of the hundreds of project management software platforms out there, Basecamp remains one of the best. It doesn't have all the bells and whistles countless other platforms try and cram into their offering, but what it does have, it does well. Keep your entire team focused on the project-at-hand with message boards, file uploads, and document collaboration.


Like anything else in life, you get out of goal-planning what you put in. Give your goals the respect they deserve by making them SMART, actionable, and ensuring they make progress. How much different could your life be a year from now if you started on one of your goals today?

Gadgets: The New GoPro

11/20/12 - I need to get one of these.

-Brought to you by Robert Thorn.

Gadgets: A Submarine Car

11/19/12 - I don't know that I'd trust it. One of those windows blows out and you're totally f'd.

-Brought to you by Robert Thorn.

Gadgets: Wanna Fly Under Water?

11/17/12 - That looks like a pretty good time...until you look back and see the shark tailing you.

-Brought to you by Robert Thorn.

Gadgets: A Flask With A Shot Glass = Amazing
shot glass flask

10/26/12 - I love genius inventors that love alcohol. Props to you good sir. I hope your patent earns you millions.

-Brought to you by Robert Thorn.

Gadgets: Nikola Tesla Was Badass

10/13/12 - Why can't we just plug our computers into the ground? Seriously, isn't there tons of static electricity in the ground we could somehow use to power our crap? Whatever, what do I know? I'm just a fat lazy guy who blogs all day.

-Brought to you by Robert Thorn.

Gadgets: Science Is Badass
science is awesome

09/29/12 - Oh science, please forget about space exploration for a few years and nip this religion thing in the bud.

-Brought to you by Robert Thorn.

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Maine Home Shirt

the home shirt

Do you love Maine? Prove it.