As we are closing out the halfway point of 2018, I thought it would be a good idea to check in on the goals that I set, back when I was all starry-eyed in January. As usual, I set too many and too ambitious of goals. So, this is a good time to do a bit of a reality check, and really home in on the ones that I can make some progress on.
I made this list sitting in a coffeehouse with my daughter at the start of the new year, using an online tool called Workflowy. It’s basically an cloud-based outlining program and works exactly like my brain does. I use it on my desktop computer and as an app on my phone. If you are curious, check out this video on how it works.
I just did a bit of a brain dump of things I wanted to accomplish in 2018 and then organized it after the fact.
My 2018 plans fell into five areas:
- Be a better person
- Orderly surroundings
- Passion Projects
Let’s tackle them one at a time.
Be a Better Person
This is what one of my Workflowy lists looks like. My first area is simply Be a Better Person–this is a catch-all for living the kind of life that I want to live.
I’ve incorporated a few of these into my life, but it still needs some work. I just realized that four of these relate to reading. (I’ll have to reorganize that.) I’ve actually been doing a lot of reading lately, but I will refocus on getting some poetry books out of the library (probably starting with Mary Oliver), and a C.S. Lewis book (maybe Surprised by Joy?). I did start and lose traction on a Wendell Berry book a few months ago, but I will give that another try.
The serious reading plan is something that I’ve been wanting to do for years–based on the book The Well-Educated Mind. This plan has you read through may classics in a more studied approach, summarizing as you go and taking notes in the margins. Then you are supposed to meet with someone else and discuss the book–like your own little English class. That is where my plan always falls apart. I think I will shelf that one until next year.
“Figure out my go-to’s”–this one I want to work on. As strange as it sounds, there are still certain things that even in middle age, I don’t have figured out. And this stresses me out. Can you relate?
I want to know that if I am invited to a dressy dinner–I have the right dress (or two) in my closet. That if someone is coming over, I have a short list of “entertaining” meals to choose from. I put dinner on the table every night of the week–but whenever we have company–I totally stress out, thinking that what we eat isn’t “good” enough for feeding other people (totally dumb). I have noticed that my friends that really don’t cook seem to have their “go-to” meals for company, potlucks, and taking meals to new moms. This should be so easy for me–but it’s not.
I’d also like to figure out a daily “uniform” to simplify dressing on a daily basis. Some sort of jeans, nice but comfortable shirt, and a few simple accessories.
I’ve got six months to figure these out! If you have your own go-to’s–please share!
I won’t go through every category in such detail–but the only one I’m making any progress on in this category is deep cleaning. And that progress is SLOW.
I do need to start a Power Hour. That is a time set aside, maybe once a week, to tackle all those nagging things that need to be done, but don’t have a deadline. Things like:
- Put a new battery in the clock
- Clean out email inbox
- Figure out why the remote control isn’t charging
- Download and back up phone photos
I was really good about this for a while and it is amazing how much mental clutter is cleaned out by handling this important but not urgent tasks. I think that an hour set aside on Saturdays should do the trick.
I’ve got some room from improvement here–but I think I can get this one back on track quickly.
THM is Trim Healthy Mama, which is the eating plan that I started when I was having some blood sugar issues. It’s a great plan for weight loss, but requires some planning. I’ve been doing pretty well lately, but I don’t feel like I can cross that one off the list until I’ve reached my goal weight.
This one is never “done”.
I have been regularly sewing and knitting, and I read the book The Artist’s Way. What I’m still not doing, is setting aside time for creating “free play” in my sewing room. I often feel driven to “produce” in the time I spend sewing–so this is one that I want to revisit.
My passion projects (aka Side Hustle) are this blog, the podcast, and designing quilts. I’m making steady progress on most of those.
I’m blogging more regularly (and given the blog a much-needed face lift!). I started a podcast–which seemed huge and terrifying, but is actually something that I totally love. I’ve only got one new pattern coming out in a magazine in 2018, but I’m okay with that. But I really do want to take the patterns that have been previously published in magazines and repackage them to sell in my own shop. That seems doable.
The series of videos on hand piecing is in the works and will most likely come out in 2019–but at least I’ve got a plan!
I’m glad I took the time to go through this–there is definitely some low-hanging fruit that I can get going on right away (vitamins, flossing, check out a few books from the library, carve out some time to play at the sewing machine). Some things that require a bit more planning and thought (create a Power Hour, think about my go-to’s, keep plugging away at those videos, keep working the THM plan). There are a few things that I need to really make a push on (mostly home maintenance projects). And a few things to let go for now (serious reading project and submitting more patterns to magazines).
Thanks for indulging me in this navel-gazing post. I’m feeling a fresh wave of motivation. How are you doing on your 2018 plans/goals/resolutions? Let me know in the comments.
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