As we approach the end of the year, I thought that I would take a moment to reflect on how 2010 has treated me (and how I’ve treated 2010 for that matter). It’s also important to look ahead to the future and take what I have gained from this past year, applying new knowledge and new resolve to the year to follow.

Lessons I’ve Learned in 2010

I find myself learning many of the same lessons again and again. I’ve learned that, since I work from home, I really do need to convince myself to get out of the house on a more frequent basis. This is not only for physical health, but also mental health and general well-being.

By the same accord, I’ve also learned the importance of snapping out of negative mindsets. It’s far too easy to get fixated on negative self-talk. We just have to remind ourselves of the positives and move forward.

Achievements I’ve Earned in 2010

Easily one of the biggest achievements I had in 2010 was being able to add “published author” to my list of titles. You may already know about the book I co-wrote with John Chow, which is available through all major bookstores, including Amazon, Chapters, and Barnes and Noble.

I’m also glad that I’ve been able to diversify my portfolio with new clients, including opportunities to try writing in new niches and in new formats. These experiences should better equip me for future challenges.

Disappointments I’ve Experienced in 2010

Even though I was able to publish a real book, the income from that book has not really pulled through just yet. For starters, the royalties from the publisher are on a six month delay. Even so, looking at some initial figures, the book has not been as lucrative as I had first hoped. That said, it’s still a great branding exercise and it’ll be useful for my legitimacy as a writer.

Similarly, my total income for 2010 is projected to be a considerable amount less than what I earned in 2009. Part of this has to do with the recovering economy and the weaker US dollar, but I also recognize the inherent ebb and flow of income when it comes to freelance writing. I’m doing what I can to make up the difference and 2011 looks much more promising.

Goals I Have Set for 2011

On the financial front, I am aiming to (at least) get back to my 2009 income level for 2011. As I said, I have a few projects and plans in place that should help me achieve this goal, but in this unpredictable economy, I’m sure it won’t come easily.

On a more personal front, I intend to read more books. In the last few years, I have’t been reading as much as I probably should (aside from blogs and other online content), but that trend has started to reverse in the last couple of months. Reading makes for better writing.

What about you? Looking back at 2010, what are your lessons, achievements, and disappointments? Looking forward, what are your goals for 2011?