2018: Start Strong, Stay Strong

The theme of this post and for 2018 is the same as the brutally cold weather we saw in the winter of 2017 and into ’18:  Don’t let up.  Let’s always keep up the momentum for learning and improving our skills.  Don’t let an impending skills or knowledge test be the only reason you get passionate about steno.  You have developed/are developing a precious skill that will bring you a great income and a better quality of life.  Here are some ideas for how you can enter 2018 strong, stay strong, and finish strong.

1.  PRACTICE

Make it a point to practice a little bit each day, or at least most days.  If you’re going to step away for a little while, do it with purpose and a specific date you will return to practicing.

2.  DICTIONARY-BUILDING

If you start today entering just two pages a day from the Merriam-Webster dictionary every single day of the year, you will have entered the whole thing your CAT dictionary in a year.  If you double the daily page count you enter, you’ll be finished in six months.

3.  CAT

Try learning one new trick each week.  Don’t try to read the manual cover to cover, for you will never retain anything that way.

4.  REALTIME

Set a plan to learn all about realtime connections and troubleshooting.  If you are not yet writing realtime, decide now that you are going to take a realtime job at some point in 2018.

5.  REACH OUT TO STUDENTS
Reach out to a student who is at a lower speed level than you are (if you are a student) and offer to help them.  You learn something best by teaching someone else.
6.  REACH OUT TO A MORE SEASONED REPORTER
Connect with a more seasoned reporter who is willing to answer questions or show you the ropes.  Better yet, request an NCRA/NYSCRA mentor.  We must be willing to train and also to be trained.  Everyone needs help sometimes and everyone can learn something new.
7.  ASSOCIATIONS
Consider joining your state or national association.  Sometimes the value gained is not tangible but has hidden, long-term benefits like lobbying for the industry to ensure jobs down the road.
8.  STAY POSITIVE
Facebook, social media, and the news in general abound with negativity.  Stay focused on what you want and how you plan to get it.
Warm regards.  Stay connected.  Stay strong.