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Brock Herion

My goals for 2024

January 20, 2024 9 minute read

2023 was, by all accounts, a great year. Some of the biggest highlights were buying a house, starting a new job, founding two companies, and taking amazing vacations to Disney World and Jamaica. It was a very successful year.

It was also a year that pushed me my absolute limits. It humbled me. 2023 changed how I look at life and set me on a trajectory that I had always wanted to go down, but been too afraid to. I won’t get into too much detail in this article, but I will be writing a retrospective article in the near future.

In this post, I’ll be sharing what my goals for 2024 are and how I plan on hitting them.

Software Development

My developer goals this year are actually not too high. I will be honing in using TypeScript as my go-to language for building applications and dipping my toes into other languages, such as Elixir and Rust. I also will be polishing up on my problem solving skills and diving deeper into system design.

There’s a couple ways I’m planning on doing this. I can actually combine learning a language with problem solving by doing Advent of Code problems. Advent of Code is an annual event where everyday until Christmas, you get a new programming problem. Each problem has two parts you need to solve, where part 2 is some kind of twist on part 1. Each problem touches on using language fundamentals (e.g. reading text from a file) and makes you design a scalable solution to each problem.

As for system design, I have a couple of books I will be working through. I also have some projects where there’s a heavy emphasis on scalable, reliable systems, so I’ll get some hands-on practice working with these concepts.

Side Projects/Startups

Last year, I started on two projects: Queuebase and Launch List. As I worked on both in parallel, I realized Queuebase was the app I actually want to build and the one with the most potential. I’ve gotten some very early, but positive, feedback on the idea, current implementation, and WIP stuff.

Queuebase is an application for managing background jobs in serverless applications. It abstracts the painfulness of setting a job queue up yourself. There are other tools like this that exist, but none of them really felt right to me. I’m building Queuebase as a tool that I want to use in my applications.

I will be shipping v0.1.0 this year in a beta state. Most of the UI and backend logic is done, I’m simply working on the client SDK. This project has taught me a lot and really put me on my toes. In time, my goal is to ship this as a product and turn it into a company, most likely as a subsidiary of my software company.

Companies

Speaking of which, I started two companies last year. One is a holding company that my wife and I own, and another is a software company that I own. This software company is where I’m really aiming to grow this year.

In 2023, I saw a jump in my freelance projects. I have been freelancing since 2019 and had 1-2 clients I worked with. The projects were somewhat on and off due to things like the pandemic and only needing work done seasonally. Last year however, they started to get a little bit bigger. Not only that, but I picked up new clients with larger project needs.

I made the choice to start a company around this and turn it into an income stream for me. It’s been one of the most terrifying, yet rewarding things I’ve done yet. Getting my large payment from a client was unreal but addicting, and to me was a sign that I’m on the right path.

My goal is to scale to this to $2,000/MRR for 2024. It seems like a lot, but I believe I can hit it with a number of different things.

  1. Project hours: I don’t do hourly rates or a fixed project cost for my clients. Instead, they purchase hour blocks at a set rate per month. This way they get new features all the time and know exactly how much they’re paying. I know exactly how much time to put in every month as well and don’t get stuck going beyond the original project scope.
  2. Maintenance plans: Software projects are never done. While you can go to production, there’s always stuff to work on. Things like code cleanup, performance improvements, bug fixes, server maintenance. A project may slow down on new features, but will still need to be maintained to run smoothly.

Should I pass that goal, I’m hoping to add somebody in the company to help with these projects. I realized while on vacation that when I’m gone, the projects stop. While not a big deal now, it will be in the future as this grows. If I can hire another developer to help with these, it would free up some of my time to pursue new clients, focus on side projects, and build other companies.

As for said other companies, my wife and I have not decided an avenue we want to pursue yet. Our top two are investing real estate or credit card machines. Given the current real estate market, we may pursue credit card machines first. We’re not throwing out the idea of owning rentals, but we may need to push that down the road.

Content Creation

This one is a bit ambitious, but I will to start publishing two articles a week. What I’ve done to help with this is create a Notion database to manage my posts and plan them out. This has been great so far, as it lets me see what I’m going to write about and start planning in advance.

I’ve toyed with the idea of starting a YouTube channel. I could potentially, but with my writing and business goals it may be a stretch. I’ve made the mistake before of overreaching and causing problems for myself later on. If I can squeeze making videos in, I will, but I won’t make any promises.

My newsletter is a constant pain point for me. I cannot come up with a format that I’m truly happy with. I need to either brainstorm new ways to write it or start doing it bi-weekly/monthly instead of weekly. There are some weeks where it’s hard to write in the format I’ve created. I’m not entirely sure where it’s going yet, so stay tuned.

Personal Goals

Finally, we get to my personal goals. Last year I started taking my health and fitness far more seriously. This year, I plan to continue that trend.

My first goal-area here is my physical fitness. I struggled a bit last year with deciding what route to take, but I’ve decided this year I want to focus on getting my gymnastics physique back. I’m not terribly interested in going into body building or lifting tremendous of weight. I would rather focus on movements that make me a well-rounded athlete.

This leads nicely into my diet. I’m going heavy on protein consumption this year. Of course, I will still eat fruits, veggies, grains, and healthy fats, but I’m shifting to up my protein intake. This will be alongside an increase in water, coffee, and tea as my main beverages. I’ll also be actively decreasing my intake of things like sugar, processed bread, fried food, alcohol, etc. Some every now and then won’t kill me, but I’ll be more conscious about what I eat and drink. I will also add supplements where need be.

For my sleep goals, I can run totally fine on 7-8 hours of sleep. Right now I’m at 8 hours and will slowly start decreasing to 7. With that, I’ll get an extra hour in my day that I can use to focus on business or personal growth.

My new favorite hobby is skincare. Those who know me from high school-college will tell you I had very bad, deep acne. It wasn’t super visible unless you were standing right in front of me. I took Accutane to clear it up, and while it did, it’s left my skin dry, flakey, and prone to burning easy. This year I’m putting together a skincare routine that help me deal treat and prevent any acne, along with making my skin less dry.

And last, but not least, my reading goal. My wife has been putting me to shame with reading. While in Jamaica, she read around 5 books, while I squeezed out 1.75 (half of one I was already reading, a quarter of one I started, and one whole one). I’m not as ambitious as she is with here 55+ book goal, but I’m aiming to read a respectable 25. I have a long list on Good Reads of things to read and have a couple of books I’m looking to read again. I have my Kindle and Audible account to help me along the way as well.

Wrapping up

That does it for my 2024 goals. The overall goal is to get focused and go heavy on building the life I want. These goals will set me up for long term success.

Things can and will change I’m sure, but it’s important I stay flexible and willing to adapt. There’s a lot of year to get through an nothing is for certain.

However, I’m confident the path I’m on is the correct one for me. I’m looking forward to everything this year will offer and can’t wait to share it all with you!

#business
#entrepreneurship
#personal goals
#personal growth
#software development
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