Zach and Ade stop by for a brief New Year’s intermission in this special episode of the Living Corporate podcast. Living Corporate’s CBE Week Series continues next week, but for now, enjoy this check-in! They discuss the importance of effective goal setting and share their New Year’s resolutions.
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Zach: What’s up, y’all? That’s right, it’s Zach.
Ade: And it’s Ade.
Zach: Aye. And listen, we’re not back back, and we ain’t even really back, but we’re here in the middle of our CBE Week Speaker Series.
Zach: Yes, that’s right, just to say Happy New Year.
Ade: Happy New Year.
Zach: Happy New Year. So look, it’s 2019. Now, I don’t know how many of y’all do resolutions or how often y’all do resolutions, but we had some resolutions we wanted to, you know, just talk about as we think about 2019, as we prepare for 2019 mentally, physically, spiritually, emotionally, all of that different stuff. So yeah, here we go. So Ade, look, before we get into these resolutions, do you do resolutions often? Like, is this a thing for you? Or is this, like, a new thing or what?
Ade: So it’s weird. I don’t really do New Year’s resolutions. I do birthday resolutions. I think that starting with the new year is not necessarily as significant for me personally as starting with my birthday, because my birth–I mean, not to sound self-centered, but it’s about me and on my timeline, and so for me it’s more honest, actually, to say that in my 23rd year, or in my 24th year, or in my 25th year, I would like to make these changes, and this is who I aspire to be, and becoming a better person starts on November 1st because that’s when my life started. Now, January 1st is great though because it sort of allows you to have accountability partners, and you’re better able to say, “Me and my group of friends will be doing XYZ in order to get to ABC goal.” Does that make sense?
Zach: Yeah, it does, definitely. No, I get that. You didn’t ask me, but–no. [laughs]
Ade: [laughing] Haha, haha. Well, you–I asked to clarify.
Zach: Also I didn’t really give you any space to say anything. [inaudible].
Ade: You really didn’t, you really didn’t.
Zach: No, I didn’t. I just hopped right in there.
Ade: You did, so back up off me, bruh. [laughs]
Zach: [laughing] No, no, that’s a good point. I mean, it’s funny that you say that, ’cause I think–I’m not a big resolutions person. This is probably, like, the–I don’t know, maybe fourth or fifth time in my life that I’ve done New Year’s resolutions, but when I think about making resolutions to myself, typically they’re around my birthday or more recently, in the past half-decade, they’ve been around my wedding anniversary with my wife. So we’ll make them together, right?
Ade: Dope, yeah.
Zach: At the same time, I think whenever you can identify some type of pace or cadence to create some goals and points of progress of yourself, all good, right? It doesn’t have to be–it can be whatever date you want it to be, but I think as long as you’re doing–you’re mindful of that in some way, I think it’s good for you. Okay, so let’s get into it. Do you want to go first or do you want me to go first?
Ade: You go first. I think I liked what you were talking about earlier, and I want you to share with the people, you know? Look at me, a gracious host. [laughs]
Zach: Look at you. [laughs] Okay, so my resolutions–so the first one is to read more, right? So I feel like I read a good bit. Like, I read–I read okay. Like, I definitely read a lot of articles. I read a lot of, you know, just pieces as they come up, especially as the world has been going on today. I read a lot of political pieces. I read The Atlantic often. I don’t really read The New Yorker as much, but I read. I’d like to read more. I’d like to read about a book every other month. You see what I’m saying? I didn’t give myself a crazy–like, “a book a month.” Like, I’m not gonna do that.
Ade: Look at you.
Zach: Right? So I’d like to read six books by the end of 2019. The second thing is of course just continuing to get healthier. I want to be around. The world is crazy as it is, you know? Plenty of things could take you out any day, so you don’t want one of those things to be yourself if you can help it.
Ade: Right. Don’t be your own enemy of progress.
Zach: Right, do not be your own enemy of progress, yes. And then the third thing, which kind of connects to the second thing, drinking a lot more water, right?
Zach: Right? So, like, you know, there are people out there–
Ade: I just–I just want to take a second here. I really hate to interrupt you, but if you’re listening, go ahead and find a glass of water and sip with us. All right, carry on, Zach.
Zach: Yes, a sip. Sip, yes. No, seriously, it’s delicious. You can have it cold. You can have it room temperature. You can have it hot, but–
Ade: Wait, hold on. Do you–do you just run around drinking hot water? [laughs]
Zach: Ayo. So listen, actually–I do not, right? But I have a good friend of mine who–no, he loves hot water. Like, he loves it. Man, listen.
Ade: Okay, I would like to speak to your–like, bring him on this show. I have so many questions.
Zach: No, no. I’ma bring him on this show. I’m not gonna–I’m not gonna drop his name, ’cause this is very impromptu, but–
Ade: This is–this is a safe space. I just have some questions for you, young man, because… huh? Okay, sorry. Carry on. I got us so off-track just then.
Zach: No, no, no. So no, he does. He drinks hot water, and it was funny–so he’s one of the people–I don’t know if you have people like this in your life. You look up to them, like, to the point where, you know, if they do something that you’re not really familiar with, and if other people did that thing you would clown them, but if they do it you’re like, “Well, dang, why are you doing that? Let me–“
Ade: “Maybe it’s valid. Maybe I should give it a whirl.”
Zach: “Maybe it’s valid. Maybe I should give it a whirl.” “Maybe I should give it a whirl.” Okay. [laughing]
Ade: Okay, so first of all, you’re not about to come for me, sir.
Zach: “Give it a whirl”?
Ade: “Give it a whirl.” I said what I said.
Zach: No, it’s funny. [laughing] No, so he–so he was like–I came into his home and he was like, “Zach, so I’ve been drinking–I’ve been doing this thing. I’ve been drinking hot water,” and I said, “Really? What?” And he said, “Yeah, would you like some?” And I said, “Sure,” and let me tell you something, it was just hot water. It wasn’t–I was like–
Ade: I really was expecting to be like, “And it changed my life. It revolutionized how I look at water intake.” No?
Zach: No, it did not. In fact, I was like, “Man, I really would like some cold water right now.” Anyway, where was I? Yeah, so drinking more water. So, you know, this kind of a case of two Americas. So there’s a–for my non-melanated folks, you know, there’s a phrase called “drinking water and minding your business.” So drinking water and minding your business, it just saves a lot–it saves you a lot of stress and drama, right? So you look at Paul Rudd. Again, speaking to my–speaking to the majority, right? If you look at Paul Rudd, Paul Rudd is the greatest example of drinking water and minding your business, right? He looks great. He hasn’t aged a day. He looks the same as he did in 1993. Right? He does. He looks phenomenal, right? Drinking water and minding your business–you know, I plan on drinking a lot of water, but I–because of the nature of our podcast, I don’t know if I plan on minding, quote unquote, my business. I mean–you know what I mean? Like, my business is–yeah, like, my business–
Ade: Your business is sort of everybody’s business.
Zach: Lowkey, right? Like, I’m not messy. Like, I’m not out here, like, Messy Mya. RIP Messy Mya. Look, now I’m talking to the black folks. I’m more so trying to–but I am trying to, like, be more hydrated, right? And, you know, there’s the–our bodies are a majority water, so it’s–everyone knows at this point it’s 2019. Wow, it’s 2019. So I don’t have to–I shouldn’t have to debate with y’all to drink more water, but please, drink more water. And also, speaking of–’cause, you know, we also do Favorite Things. We talk about music and stuff. A sleeper, shout-out Joe Budden Podcast, is the Mick Jenkins’ “Drink More Water” project he put out, it was–
Ade: You have lost me. You have lost me. I don’t know what you’re talking about. I also don’t listen to Joe Budden’s podcast, so maybe that’s where the disconnect is right now, my friend.
Zach: So “sleeper” is a term, like, you know, this is some music maybe y’all have missed or y’all don’t really know about.
Ade: Oh, ’cause the first thing I thought was a sleeper cell, and I was like, “All right, well, I–I have to bow out of this conversation, because I don’t know anything about sleeper cells.”
Zach: No, no, no. No sleeper cells. Nothing like that around here. Please. Feds, please don’t–don’t get us.
Ade: Right? We’ve got to go.
Zach: Yeah, right? Now, look, we’re gonna have to delete all of this, because Aaron’s gonna transcribe this, and then it’s gonna be all on Google and stuff. There’s gonna be “sleeper cells”–
Ade: Oh, see–nah, mm-mm. Aaron, just go ahead and–
Zach: Delete all of this.
Zach: Yeah. [laughs] Anyway, so yeah, you know, I’m excited about that. I feel as if those are some smart goals. I feel like they’re very attainable, they’re realistic, and they’re helpful for me for what I’m trying to do, right? They’re very straightforward. So that’s me. Those are my New Year’s resolutions.
Ade: Okay, okay. Now, I want to push back a little bit. Part of what is important when you’re setting goals is to set intentional goals, right? There’s this concept of SMART goals, and so that is–so you set Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound goals, and that way you have much more–you’re more likely to achieve those goals. So by specific, I mean [inaudible] drink water–by smart I mean you want to drink water, so do you want to drink a gallon of water a day? Do you want to set time goals, like, “By 9:00 a.m., I’ve had 16 ounces of water.” So I think goals and resolutions are all talk until you are able to really discern for yourself what those goals are, how you’re going to make them happen, and what that timeline’s gonna look like. So I’m gonna repeat what SMART is. You have Specific, you have Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound or Time-sensitive goals. So to give you an example, this year, in 2019, I want to get my solutions architect cert, my AWS solutions architect cert. I want to do that by July ’19. So that is a specific goal. It’s measurable because it’s a certification, it’s achievable ’cause, I mean, I can study for it. It’s relevant to my larger kind of goal for my life, and it’s time-bound. I have set a hard deadline of July 2019 to get that certification, do you see what I’m saying?
Zach: No, I definitely understand what you’re saying, and you’re right. So opposed to me saying, “I want to drink more water,” I should be saying, “I want to drink about a gallon of water a day.” Instead of me saying, “I want to get healthier,” I should say something like, “I’d like to work out at least two to three times a week and cut out sugary and processed foods.” And, you know, I kind of did it with the book one when I said I’d like to read a book every other month. So no, I get it. You’re absolutely right, and to your point, when we–when we’re not specific and really truly smart–let’s go ahead and just give out the acronyms to smart real fast. So it’s–
Ade: Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound. Now, there are also some people who say it’s SMARTER, where you have all of those that I just mentioned, and then you have Evaluated and Reviewed, which I think are also important parts of the goal setting process, but we don’t have to go quite that far right now.
Zach: [laughing] No, no, no. This is great. So, you know, it’s important, because I think we–the less specific we are with the goals that we say we have, the more of an out we give ourselves to short-change ourselves in the future, right? So–and then also, if they’re not specific to you, then you can end up kind of moving the goal posts on yourself and not really ever achieving [inaudible]. So if you say, “Man, I really want to lose some weight,” right? I’m gonna pick on losing weight because losing weight is–like, almost everybody feels like they either need to or would like to lose some weight.
Ade: Or the alternative for those of us skinny-minis who want to gain some weight, but gain healthy weight.
Zach: There you go. Some people want to gain some healthy weight. Thank you. Let’s be inclusive of all of our body types and health spaces.
Zach: Aye. [laughs] So when you say, “Hey, I’d like to have this health goal,” if you’re not really specific in, like, the numbers you’re trying to achieve or the–just what you’re outcome is, then you can end up saying, “Well,” you know, “I didn’t really have to work out today. I just want to work out more,” and you end up–you end up cheating yourself. Or you say, “Well, I didn’t say I wanted to eat perfectly healthy. I just wanted to eat more vegetables,” and it’s like, “Okay…” And you just end up cheating yourself. So I think the more specific you can be and, like, more granular you can be with what your goals are, the harder it will be for you to ignore the fact that you’re either off-track on them or not really driving towards them. So I super agree with that.
Ade: Right. On that note, I’ll share some of my goals. And I know I got on you for SMART, and some of mine aren’t necessarily SMART goals, but we move. Anyway, so I would like to read and discuss five meaningful articles a week.
Zach: Okay, okay.
Ade: So that’s whether they’re in The Atlantic or whether I’m scrolling through Medium and some of the software engineering spaces that I follow. I’d like to be able to read and discuss five articles, and part of that is in finding some of the computer science fundamentals. Base CS has some really great–I don’t know if I want to even call those articles, but some really great write-ups on computer science fundamentals, which are important for me to learn. So I’d like to do that five times a week. I would like to get my solutions [inaudible] earlier, my AWS solutions architect certification, by July 2019. This is–this next one I haven’t quite figured out how I’m gonna do yet, but I want to reinvent my wardrobe. Now, I say that because I was having a conversation with my partner, and often times when we’re out or we really have to go out, I’ll just, like, throw on sweatpants and a t-shirt or whatever, and then when we get out I’ll complain about looking like a hobo. Okay, that wasn’t necessarily how I wanted to say that, but I’ll complain about not looking my best self.
Ade: And part of that is just I didn’t–I don’t necessarily have all of the pieces that I want, and I want to show up, like, how I feel. I want to show up looking and representing myself in my best light, and so part of that–I’m still always going to be a joggers and tennis shoes kind of girl, but I don’t have to be a four sizes too large sweatpants and t-shirt that I bought when I was in 7th grade sort of girl, you know? So that’s important to me as well. I want to go to the gym once a week and work out of home three times a week. I’m going to create three projects for my portfolio, and I’m going to attend AfroTech in November this year. Those are my goals.
Zach: That sounds–that sounds incredible. Those are great goals.
Ade: AfroTech is also lit, and if anybody’s trying to sponsor me to go to AfroTech, hit your girl up.
Zach: Man, listen. Y’all want to sponsor Ade, y’all want to sponsor Living Corporate and we’ll send Ade? Man, let’s–come on. Get in our inbox.
Ade: Let’s go. Let us know.
Zach: DMs are open for everybody. They are. True.
Ade: Okay, uh, let’s clarify. Not that open. [laughing]
Zach: They are though. They’re open on all the social medias. No, but that’s–you know, to your first point, it’s so interesting how, like–so as kind of, like, a fashion point, like, if you notice, like, there’s–there’s enough clothes out here to curate a bunch of different looks. Like, if you want to be, like, hobo chic, right, you could get, like, some really form-fitting–
Ade: I’m trying to–I’m trying to really walk away from the hobo chic look, because I thought that was what I was doing. Upon further reflection, it’s just–it’s further towards the hobo end of the spectrum than the chic, so we’re just gonna let that dream go.
Zach: Got you, got you. ‘Cause I was gonna say, like–and I don’t know, like, what your preference is, but, like–you know, ’cause you could wear, like, some fitted–not fitted, but, like, nicely-fitting sweatpants, right? You could wear some nicely-fitting sweatpants.
Ade: You’re right, you’re right. Look, if there are any listeners who are designers, who have an eye for fashion, hit your girl up, because I am confused. Okay? Okay.
Zach: [laughs] And then [inaudible], that’s also great. And then the five [inaudible] with these articles–you’re gonna share the articles with me.
Ade: Ooh, bet. I like that, yes. We can do that.
Zach: Yeah, share the articles with me, ’cause I love–I love reading a good article. I think it’s easier to read than reading a whole book. It’s, like, typically one subject. It’s not clearly as long, but I love articles, so yeah, please. I’d love to check out what you got going on. Then AfroTech of course, that’s super dope.
Ade: Yeah, yeah. I’m really ready.
Zach: Okay. Now, look, I think–I know those are our resolutions. Before we get out of here though, what was the best thing you ate over the holiday break?
Ade: Ooh. Oh, Lord. Jesus. I just want to let everybody know about the greatness of my girlfriend’s shrimp and grits. So on New Year’s Day, she made shrimp and grits, I made rum cheesecake-stuffed French toast, and we lived our best lives. Do you have actually–before we move forward, do you do the pork chop, collard greens, and black-eyed peas ritual?
Zach: So I don’t–it’s not, like, a super traditional thing. Like, we don’t do it every year, but I definitely have had it, like, multiple times in my life for New Year’s. And, you know, outside of New Year’s, but yeah.
Ade: Yeah. So I did that as well.
Zach: Oh, yeah. That’s good.
Ade: So for those of you who don’t know, some African-American families, some black families, have a tradition wherein in the New Year they eat a pork chop or a pork product of some sort, black-eyed peas, collard greens, and some will throw in cornbread. And I made all of it. I don’t eat pork obviously, but she enjoyed it. She seemed to like her plate, so that was great. And what else did we eat this break? We didn’t spend a whole ton of time cooking a whole lot, but cooking is my favorite thing. I made a really dope burger for us both. It was–I don’t know. I can’t wait to cook for you honestly. I want you to come here so that I can feed you, and I’m honestly probably not gonna help your goals of losing weight, but the important part is that the food tastes good.
Zach: No, I’m excited. I’ll just have to–I’ll just do a bunch of pre-workouts, you know what I mean? And post-workouts. It’s all good.
Ade: See? Yeah, there you go. There you go. And you might have to do two-a-days honestly, but–
Zach: Wow, okay. Appreciate the honesty. So what else? So we talked about food. We talked about–we talked about our resolutions. Hm. Ade, what are you most excited about in 2019?
Ade: I am most excited about leveling up. I think every new year is an opportunity to excel, and again, this is part of why I kind of count my new year at my birthday as opposed to at the calendar date, but it’s a new year to kind of show the little person that you once were how dope everything could be, how dope you could be, how dope life could be, how dope you could make life be for those around you, and part of that is in wanting to wake up every day and crush it. And I don’t mean to sound like we’re in a huddle and I’m giving you a pep talk, but I think it’s exciting when you’re able to look your fears in the face, or look a whole new year in the face, and be like, “Yeah, I’m comin’ for you.” I was gonna say, “I’m coming for that” something else, but I don’t think we’re quite that explicit on this show.
Zach: No, we’re not that explicit. That’s funny though.
Ade: Okay. [laughs] Ultimately, I am excited about being granted another opportunity to get it right and get it right and excel at it, you know? So what are you excited about?
Zach: Well, you know, it’s funny. I really feel like I’m excited about the same thing. Like, 2019, it’s an exciting time because there’s so much positive momentum that I’m hearing from last year. Relationships made, some in-roads created with various things and people and projects, and of course Living Corporate. I’m really excited to continue that forward. We have a whole–[Lord say the same?]–we have another 12 months of this thing going on, you know, unless the earth ends, and so I’m excited about us just continuing forward. There’s so much to do, especially when you talk about inclusion and diversity work. I feel like the whole field has just been blowing up the past few years, and it seems like every year, like, there’s something new that comes along, some new, quote unquote, new piece of learning that everyone’s gravitating towards, and I just think that, like, we’re ripe in the season to be doing the work that we’re doing. So I’m really, really excited about that. I’m excited about the content that’s gonna be coming out of the Living Corporate platform. We have a writing team that we’re very aggressively building up right now. We have some amazing guests that–you know, that you all will be hearing for Season 2. We just have a lot of stuff–we just have a lot of stuff cooking, and so I’m excited for us to grow, and then I’m really excited for our audience to see it and be a part of it and hopefully grow with us. I’m really excited about that.
Ade: Yeah, that’s amazing.
Zach: Okay. Well, I guess that does it. I’m done. Do you have anything else, Ade?
Ade: Yeah. So I just want to wish everybody a happy, safe New Year. I hope that, even if your year hasn’t started on the highest note–if 2018 was not good to you, I pray that 2019 will, and I pray that, you know, this New Year is full of opportunities for you, and I hope that we are able to help foster a space that excites you and motivates you. That’s it from me.
Zach: Man, you always got the dope words. See, that’s a great sign-off.
Zach: That’s a great sign-off. Yes, okay. Well, listen, y’all. You will be hearing more of us on the Living Corporate podcast later this month. This was just a New Year’s hello kind of intermission type thing in the middle of our CBE Week Speaker Series. I hope that you all are listening to the series. I’m looking at the download numbers. Y’all are, but I need y’all to pick it up. That’s right, I’m talking to you. Listen to the–listen to the show. Listen to the series. It’s very good, and then make sure that you stay tuned, because we’re gonna have more information about CBE Week as it comes up. So with that being said, my name is Zach.
Ade: And I’m Ade.