New Year's resolutions pen on paperIt seems too soon to have to write something (as I did last year) about new year’s resolutions for lawyers. Perhaps we can all resolve to have time pass more slowly in 2013.

Barring that possibility, I thought I’d rank my success on last year’s very public goals, and then share two recent blog posts that suggest some lawyerly goals for all of us in the coming year.

So, first, here are my 2012 goals, and my grade. Feel free to shoot spitballs:

Write more, “meeting” less: “When I speak dismissively of meetings, I assure you I do not mean meeting with potential or current authors about their ongoing cool project. I don’t mean brainstorming sessions about the evolution of Arizona Attorney’s look and feel. No, I mean the raft of other meetings that the human flesh is heir to. And if I could replace those often nonsensical gatherings with a little more time to write, what a year it could be!”

Grade B plus

(Self-) Grade: B+. I was mostly courageous at pointing out when a meeting was on a topic beyond my dedicated workload or my skill set. But I occasionally let my sense of obligation get me lassoed into a soul-killing gathering. Room for improvement!

Share more in the legal community: “This resolution will require more meetings, but only those of the good variety. Currently, I often try to be away from my desk attending and covering legal events that may be of interest to our readers. In 2012, I aim for even more of that. I also would like to meet more with law firms and legal groups and organizations to discuss story ideas and remind lawyers about the role the magazine may play in achieving their own goals. (In fact, if you have an upcoming event I should attend or speak at, contact me at”

Grade A minus

Grade: A-. Yes, I got out and about more than in the past. And I enjoyed it and found it helped my work. Keep it up!

Collaborate and ask for help: “This final resolution will be mandatory if I hope to achieve our goal of providing even more content in 2012—content in the magazine and online. To do that, we’ll need to identify great idea people whose ideas would shine in our media platforms. We’ll create partnerships with lawyers and nonlawyers who can speak to compelling issues in a changing industry. And we’ll locate even more Arizona lawyer-bloggers who enjoy having their fellows read and comment on their stuff.”

Grade C

Grade: C. I admit I’m a hard grader, but this has been a challenging resolution. I was relatively successful at finding stringers to write some feature stories for the magazine. But to free up more time, I’ll have to redouble my efforts to locate a great freelancer or two who can take on some semi-regular writing. Get on it!

OK, I’m exhausted. I may come up with brand-new 2013 resolutions, but for today I’m done.

What are your resolutions?

To help your thinking, here are two bloggers’ takes on the question. First, Matthew Hickey explores resolutions you can make for yourself and your law practice. And then, tongue (I think) in cheek, Tristan Taylor Thomas explains how lawyers may achieve mediocrity in 2013. Stay positive!

Happy New Year’s. I’ll be back on Wednesday (that’s right, I’m taking New Year’s Day off, perhaps kicking back with a mimosa or bloody Mary).