In the last 4yrs or so I had yearly career goals, so far it went better then I expected, I achieved all of them or pivoted mid-year.
The key was to set reachable goals, with "carrots" that I like. Mostly I did like @sam_ferree
said here: dev.to/sam_ferree/comment/57jc
Why? To be better, handle bigger tasks, make more ppl happy, win the game.
I do Not set goals for periods longer than 1 year, life in general, but development in particular are too chaotic, or fast, whatever you choose. I have 3-5 yrs plans, but they can easily be destroyed or remade.
My "goal" 4 years ago: learn Unity3D and be a full time dev. Achieved that and I learned is not such a good thing, for my aspirations at least.
My next year goals: get at least 2 more cloud-related certifications (Docker, GCP, probably 3 with Java, less likely 4th with K8s), become a better mentor by helping a few more junior devs, read a dozens of papers and books, write at least 20 more articles ... and a few others related to OSS, writing a book and starting my Go career.
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