formerly Diane's Addled Ramblings... the ramblings are still addled, just like before, and the URL is still the same...
it's just the title at the top of the page that's new

Friday, January 1, 2016

Goal Digger

Happy New Year, peeps! Hope your celebrations were as rowdy or quiet as you hoped they'd be. I rang in the new year with three fuzzies all snuggled near, Wire in the Blood on Hulu, and a mug of tea at my elbow. Not a bad evening, all told!

So, today begins a whole new year. Or, you know, it's just Friday. I've seen it both ways, with excitement and meh, whatevs, and everything in between. This year I'm leaning more toward seeing today as a re-start... a time to take a look at what's working in my life and what's not... a time to regroup and set some goals.

I used to set resolutions every January 1. And I'd break them all by January 5. You know the story... I'd bet most people do it that way. But then I started setting goals instead. It might just be in my head, but I see them as very different animals. Resolutions? I break and give up. Done. Goals? I work toward, I mess up, I get back on board. Sometimes I reach them. Sometimes I don't (for the record, I'd like to reach more of them than I have been).

It works for me. Mostly.

When I first started blogging, I met loads of really cool people. One was 'Hebba,' the author of Jeepgirl17. I loved her blog and the way she lived her life. She was (and probably still is, though she doesn't blog much anymore) a Master Goal Setter. And she did this cool thing where she would list her monthly goals on her blog and then, at the start of the next month, she'd let us all know if she succeeded or failed in reaching them. I thought it was kind of brave, really, allowing all of Blogland to see her progress (or lack thereof) in areas of life that were important to her.

I don't know if it will work for me.

But I'm all about trying new things.

OK, I just lied. I'm not really all about trying new things. In fact, I tend to do the same old thing, over and over, and then wonder why it never works. But I'm getting tired of that.

Ryan and I had a conversation yesterday about getting old. She said she didn't want to live once her body started failing. She didn't want to get "too old." I said that I don't know if I'll ever feel "too old." I feel much like I felt 20 or 30 years ago (well, inside, I do. Heaven knows my knees don't feel that way). I told her that I feel as though I'm just getting started now; I feel as though my life has been on hold for a long, long time - since I met her dad, really. That's my own doing or perception, certainly. I'm not blaming anyone else. But the fact is, on hold or not, my life didn't stand still. I'm 50 and I'm certainly not getting younger, so now I feel the need to move... to DO.

For much of my life, I have been guilty of not living mindfully... of just coasting along and letting things happen. I want to change that. I know a few people who truly live with intention... who accomplish so much and do so much of what they love, and I find myself feeling jealous of them. I want to do more of what I love. I want to live more mindfully. I want to live with more intention.

Interestingly, as I was writing this post, Ryan came in with a gift for me from her friend Piper, who went on vacation with us this summer. In the package was a card she had written out for me. It read:


So, I close my eyes to 
old ends
and open my heart to
new beginnings  

- Nick Frederickson

What a nifty little bit of synchronicity, eh?

So, with the intention of living with more intention, I sat down and asked myself what is really important to me? What are my priorities? What do I want and need to accomplish in order to live my best life? Then I wrote out a list of goals for the year - goals that, if I reach them (or maybe even if I just try to reach them), will get me closer to that place - to my best life.

There are many goals on my list. They are both big and small. Some will be easy and some will be really difficult; some might be impossible (but I won't know until I try). They affect all areas of my life - health, work, relationships, home, creative, financial. They are specific and measurable, and I've broken them down into steps - things I can do daily/weekly/monthly to, hopefully, reach them. And while I'm not going to list out all my goals for the year here, I think I shall take a page from Hebba's book... er, blog... and list my monthly goals. And when the month is up, I'll note whether I succeeded or failed. 

Here are my January Goals:

1. Journal daily - I am happier and healthier when I journal and list out things I'm grateful for. I get caught up in being busy, or in being lazy, though, and I don't always do it with the frequency I should.

2. Do a new 'Vision Board' - I'm a visual person and being able to see tangible examples of the things I want to bring into my life is a wonderful way to keep me on track. Plus, I love to collage!

3. Go on two 'Artist's Dates' - Artist's dates are from The Artist's Way, by Julia Cameron. They are a way to stimulate creativity and since I have some long-term writing/creative goals, this is necessary.

4. Perform two 'Mindful Acts of Kindness/Connection/Giving' - I have been blessed so often, by so many kind, generous people, in so many ways I can never repay. I believe in doing random acts of kindness and in paying forward but I just don't do it enough. Making this a goal will keep me in the mindset of giving, rather than receiving.

5. Write three blog posts per week - blogging makes me happy and it keeps me writing.

6. Read three of the books on my nightstand - it's ridiculous how many books I haven't read, especially given how much I love to read. The pile just keeps getting bigger. And I need to replace my recent Netflix addiction, which is not healthy at all.

7. Re-start Whole 30 - I fell of the 'eat well, feel well' wagon and I really want and need to get back on it, for so many reasons.

8. Work out four times per week - I was doing really well and then, again, fell off the wagon. I want to get back to the gym and back into the pool (once my arm is completely healed).

9. Re-start 'Declutter 365' - a few years ago, I did a decluttering project that worked really well for me. I got rid of/recycled/donated (at least) one thing every single day. While on the surface our house appears uncluttered, my closet, drawers, and the basement are full of things I don't want or need. Getting into the daily habit of releasing those things is really cathartic (and will make my next move much easier).

10. Do tax return as soon as W2 is available - I don't think I need to explain this one.

11. Start new savings plan - I am terrible at this; I need to learn to 'pay myself' first and look at my spending much more mindfully.

12. Re-do my files and calendar (work).

13. Complete resume writing video scripts (work).

14. Reach $1000 of my Arctic Dip fundraising goal (work).

And there you have it. Ambitious, perhaps, but other than a few projects, most of them are simply habits I once had and want to get back into... and lot of them will be fun, so I should have no trouble.



We'll see, on February 1...

How about you? Do you have goals for 2016? Or January? Or tomorrow? Do tell.


Sheila said...

Three blog posts a week?!? That will make my 2016 better.
If you post your link for the Dip, we can sponsor you.
My word for 2016 is Grace; the definition I like is "the exercise of love, kindness or goodwill." I hope 2016 is a great year for all!

Diane said...

Sheila, thank you!! Grace was ALMOST my word this year, too! Abundance kept niggling at me, though. And I will post the link to the Dip in an upcoming post! Thanks so much!!