One of the things that the Genealogy Do-Over has been doing for me and many others is forcing us to look at our goals and writing them down in the hopes that we can bring some order to the mess our research has become.
Below are the goals that I have come up with so far. Yes the list is pretty extensive. No I do not think I can even come close to being able to accomplish this all in 2015. But by writing out the goals I can come up with a workable plan and can make progress in reaching those goals. I have learned from other areas to break things down into baby steps. When I just look at the big picture I can become discouraged and want to give up. When I say today I will spend 15 minutes going through 1 or 2 file folders that I can do. It is amazing how quickly those babysteps can start showing results!
- Find 1 or 2 others also doing this to set up a personal accountability group to keep me honest and on track.
- Take this list of goals and break it down to yearly, quarterly, monthly and weekly goals with some sort of checklist to help me stay on track.
- Set specific time aside for working on my research at least a couple of times a week. If I say it is a priority, I need to show that by actually setting aside time to work on it!
- Read magazines and books on the subject on a regular basis, participate in group discussions about Genealogy to keep learning new tips and tricks.
- Become more familiar with source citation standards so using them is 2nd nature.
- Set naming standards for folder and files, both digital and paper so that not only I can find what I want, but have my files organized in such a way that other will be able to use them.
- Develop and USE a research log.... maybe an extension of my current research plan worksheet?
- Create a physical file folder for each individual with an inventory sheet and a checklist of source to look for sheet. As research plans are made paper copies will also be placed into this folder.
- Start a new tree for my ancestors beginning with myself.
- After entering name onto tree make a folder for that person on the computer and a physical file folder for that person so I can easily store all pertinent documents for that person
- Write a research plan for that person, store a digital copy in the folder on the computer and a paper copy in the physical file folder
- Locate all documentation I already have for that person, if already in digital form move to their folder. If I only have a paper copy of the documentation, either scan it or find a digital copy of the file online and place in the appropriate file. If I only have a digital copy, print out a paper copy and put into file folder. Goal is to have both a paper and digital copy of all important documents.
- Have an offsite backup copy of all files, for when computer glitches or fails.
- Place paper copies of documents in the proper folder and put into the file cabinet, being sure to add the document to the inventory list at the front of the folder.
- Enter the information one document at a time into the tree being sure to properly document the source of the information.
- Only after I have reasonably exhausted all research on that individual, move on to the next individual.
- Make sure all information is correct, as well as correctly connected to the appropriate people, and that the source of information is correctly cited.
- Stay on top of filing. As I get each new document I need to file it away in its proper folder so things stay in order and don't get misplaced
- Pay special attention to Shields/Doten line so I can apply for membership in Mayflower Society
- Scan, label, file and share photos.
- Write quarterly family newsletter for Newman cousins, consider a quarterly newsletter for Busch cousins.
- Self-Publish a Busch family genealogy and submit to Family History Library in Salt Lake City, as well as a copy to the Modoc County Library and the Library is Sierra City, Sierra, California, in honor of my mother's work. Then work on self-publishing other lines and submit to the Family History Library and other libraries as appropriate to the family line.
- Join pertinent lineage/family societies, such as the Stiles Family of America and the Association of American Boyers to be able to collaborate with others researching common lines
- Finish outlining the Records of the Antrim Family in America book by Harriet Stockton Antrim to help me (and others) in researching that name since the book is not indexed, nor are individuals numbered in standardized genealogical fashion.
- Write in the journal I started to record my personal life story on a regular basis so my descendants have a part of me in my own words when I am no longer around.
Do you have a list of goals for the coming year? Spend a little time thinking about it. Write them down, then break those goals into bite size babysteps that you can feel good about accomplishing.