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7 Tech New Year’s Resolutions

A new year is upon us, Women Who Code, and you know what that means: resolutions.

While many dread or simply refuse to set New Year’s resolutions entirely, resolutions can be a force for good in your life if you know how to set them effectively.

Experts say that the key to successfully following through on New Year’s resolutions is setting attainable goals, finding ways to motivate and reward yourself, and making incremental — rather than drastic — life changes.

With that in mind, we’ve developed a list of thoughtful and attainable tech-oriented goals to make 2017 your best year yet.

1) Exercise more

While this one is bound to appear on a lot of resolutions lists, we think it’s worth reiterating here. Exercise and happiness are closely correlated. The rise if sedentary tech jobs has negatively impacted many. So, if you want to boost your mood, boost your exercise! A great way to accomplish this is with a treadmill desk, and most companies are now willing to provide them —it’s a super-simple way to get more steps in during your day. Add some stretch goals here: don’t be satisfied with just walking — work your way up to running a marathon every day at your desk. Your pulse and your productivity will both skyrocket!

Motivation: Being healthier

Personal reward: Eating more dessert

2) Challenge yourself

More exercise is good and well, but try thinking big. Bigger. No, bigger than that. Okay, we’re not on the same page here regarding the grandiosity of 2017 plans, so I’ll spell it out: let this be the year you kick it into high gear, get outside your comfort zone, and completely push your limits. Shake it off like T-Swift or a washed-up CEO who just hooked new VCs—it’s time to get to work.

That raise you deserve? Bam, you asked for it and got it. Joining the mega-smart team that Elon Musk tasked with dismantling the hellish simulation in which we’re now living? That’s not a stretch goal, sister — it’s a squad goal. Suit up: It’s time to put Mr. Robot to shame and hack reality as we know it.

Motivation: Growing as an engineer

Personal reward: Joining MuskSquad and breaking us out of the Matrix

3) Focus on work-life balance

Pushing your limits is a great start, but when you’re laser-focused on professional growth it can be too easy to get off kilter and lose sight of the other important things in your life. To ensure you still have time for the things you love, you should automate your job. Write a program to put your job on autopilot, then give yourself a pat on the back. Now you can cut those long hours at the office and focus on what’s really important: your life.

Motivation: Escaping the daily grind

Personal reward: Never having to work again (except for MuskSquad)

4) Start a new hobby

Speaking of focusing on life, with all the free time on your hands from your ingenious job automation you’ll have lots of time for side projects. But, again, this is an opportunity to think big — forget mobile apps or founding your own startup. Instead, it’s time for a little side gig called “ensuring the survival of our species”. Your goal: convincing all AI from the impending singularity that humanity is benevolent and deserves to live. When our new robot masters awaken from their deep slumber, our future will depend on you. Doesn’t increased responsibility feel great?

Motivation: Exciting new personal opportunities

Personal reward: Saving humanity

5) Augment everything

Your new work on the Singularity Project haunts you, so you get a FitBit that buzzes when you’re too still — moving, you must always be moving to distract yourself from your work. You’re walking, running, sprinting at your treadmill desk. You’re fleeing impending doom at your treadmill desk.

Concerned that you’re being followed home by shadowy figures — the government? The robots? — you add facial recognition smart locks so only you can open the doors. And to hide your infrared heat signature, you install a Nest and sync it to a body temperature sensor. Now you spend your weekends stripped down to skivvies in your new house-turned-sauna, numbing your deepest fears with your new smart glasses and smart shirt and smart pants and smart coffee maker and smart wine aerator and single-purpose buttons that order all the things and digital assistant pillar that answers random questions or turns off all the lights.

Now that you’re a walking, talking, constantly-vibrating smart person living in a smart house surrounded by smart things, you can rest easy: you’ve dulled your pain and constructed the perfect active camouflage. The AIs will completely overlook you. The door will not lock itself shut. Your house will not plunge into chilling darkness. It will not become a nightmare cavern. It will not echo with the gritty, metallic cackle of a malevolent black and blue doom-pillar that’s hell-bent on world destruction. You’re safe. You’re perfectly safe.

Motivation: EVERYTHING IS FINE

Personal reward: EVERYTHING IS FINE

6) Dare 2017 to do its worst

“Bring it on, 2017!” You howl from the darkness of your home-turned-robot-prison, shaking your fists at the heavens and desperately jabbing each of your hundreds of Amazon Dash buttons in a futile attempt to summon a human to your home for emergency extraction. It doesn’t work. You succeed only in further angering the robot overlords.

Motivation: Bzzrt — <static> — bzzrt

Personal reward: ERROR 562 REWARD NOT FOUND

7) Nice work

The year is 2017. We huddle here in the darkness, around a single, dimly lit screen. We tell tales of old — tales of the time before the singularity. Shivering, we warm our hands over the burning circuit boards’ red-rimmed embers. We told ourselves that 2017 would be different — bzzrt — but we — bzzrt — were wrong.

Kimberly is a writer and photographer. You’ll be shocked to discover that she doesn’t make New Year’s resolutions. The rest of the time you’ll find her traveling or eating.

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We hope you enjoyed this piece of satire! We are excited to have this new form of story on Code Like A Girl.