Ringing in 2017

After a brief hiatus, and the opportunity to reflect on the year that was, it’s time to take stock, on a personal and professional level, and make some decisions for the new year.

2016 was fraught with unhappy surprises. We had a spate of celebrity deaths, our share of political turmoil and daily reminders about the ongoing threat of terrorism.

But it’s important to remember that there were also a number of incredible things that happened in 2016, too. Lest we forget the progress we made against disease, environmental issues, and technological advancements that would have been difficult to predict just a year ago.

So, to get introspective for a moment, I wanted to make known a few personal and professional goals for 2017. Whether they turn out to be resolutions or delusions, only time will tell …


Get healthy – nothing new or original about this one, but it is now undeniable that I need to concentrate on giving myself the best chance at survival, for the sake of my family, my friends, and quality of life. No more sidelines, more participation. If you’d like to join me, myfitnesspal.com is a great place to start.

Spend more time on a hobby – I recently logged the number of hours I spent on each activity in my life, and the result was not good! I noticed that the bulk of my free time was spent in front of a screen [TV, tablet, laptop, whatever] and it’s generally a waste. Downtime is fine, but after a long day of staring at a screen for work, I need to do some other things. Got any suggestions?

Write that damn book – being an author has never been more attainable. All kinds of tools are out there for the word processing, organizing your thoughts, marketing your product and selling millions of copies worldwide. The only thing required to make it all happen is the desire and determination to see it through to the end. This year, that end is in sight!


Start a new career – well, a sideline, at any rate. For years, I’ve listened and politely nodded as people would compliment my voice or delivery of information. They would suggest that I consider doing voice acting or voice over work. Well, I’ve recently had the opportunity to lend my voice to a couple projects, and I’m hoping to do some more in the future, so if you’re curious, have a look here.

#HastagGumbo – I’m thinking that #HashtagGumbo is going to become a thing around here at Comm n’ Sense. It began as #HashtagTuesday, where I would take a closer look at a trending hashtag from that day, but it seems that the hashtag is already in heavy use. So, I’ll change it up a bit and have it be a recap of some of the week’s/month’s bigger news, as opposed to what’s hot at that particular moment. Stay tuned for that change.

Make more time for the PD – Professional development, that is. A couple years ago, I made a commitment to obtain my accreditation in public relations [APR], and it was one of the more fulfilling journeys in my career. But like any professional designation, it requires maintenance. I’ve done a few things here and there, but this year I need to make strides.

There it is …

It seems many of my resolutions hinge on time – managing and maximizing it – so I’ll be looking to all of you for some input on how to best go about that kind of change. What are some of your resolutions this year? Let me know in the comments below. Who knows, maybe we can it happen for both of us!

photo credit: fernando butcher Happy via photopin (license)


Published by

Ashley Brown, APR

I have seen and done it all, on large and small scales, including communications planning, event coordination, print production, digital presence management, media relations, and more. Bringing in an outside perspective, with an objective set of eyes to pour over your organization's communications programs is considered best practice and yields actionable results. I gather anecdotal and empirical evidence to measure and evaluate the effectiveness of your current communications programs, and make suggestions about how to improve your planning and execution processes, as well as your communications products and materials.

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