So, it’s January. Actually, we’re more than halfway through January, which means 99% of the people I know have already declared their New Year’s resolutions, and 50% of them have already broken them.
But I don’t do resolutions – I do goals. Around 20 or so specific, measurable, but loosely held ideas of what I want to accomplish in a year. 2012 was no exception, and like every year, some I finish, some I start, and some I don’t do at all. And that’s okay with me, because how can we possibly know on January what a whole year will hold? I don’t know about you, but I’m still trying to figure out next week. Taking the time to think through the most important things in your life, making sure your everyday actions line up with those things, having a direction – all of those are important, I get that. But why do we put so much pressure on ourselves to declare some big thing that we will do or be by the time we roll around to the end of December? Isn’t there room for just living in this moment, for being willing to take each new bend in the road as it comes, and for allowing God to change the things that are important to us?
So, this is how I balance the two – I spend some time thinking about what’s important to me, what new experiences I want to have or skills I want to cultivate, what habits I’d like to add to my life and which ones need to be removed. Then I come up with a list, and I review it about once a month – not just to see how much progress I’m making, but also to figure out if that goal is even important to me anymore.
These were the goals I set in 2012, and my results on each:
- Create art with Jacob (done – one, two, three)
- Try 25 new recipes (done – one, two, three, four, five, six)
- Read 5 non-fiction books (partially done – one, two, three, four)
- Read through the entire Bible (partially done)
- Get eight hours of sleep a night for one solid month (not done)
- Start an herb garden (not done)
- Make meaningful art for my house (done – one, two, three, four)
- Explore downtown Frederick by trying six new restaurants (done)
- Take a yoga class (not done)
- Take a French class (done)
- Take Ally, Cam, and Jake to lunch for their birthdays (done)
- Cut my car loan balance in half (not done)
- Join a Bible study (done)
- See 5 (new) places from the book 1,000 Places to See in the U.S.A. & Canada Before You Die (partially done)
- Walk the dogs four times a week for a month (not done)
- Set up a recycling center (done)
- Tile something (not done)
- Grill something (not done)
- Write random notes to the people that I love (done)
- Go hiking with my sisters (done – one, two)
I’m still working on the goal list for this year. Some were pretty easy, but I’m struggling to think through a few others. It might partly be because God turned my life upside down the last two months of 2012 and I think it’s likely He’ll do it again this year. It’s also because there are some big areas that I want to address in some way, but I haven’t let figured out how I want to do it.
Hopefully, I’ll have the list done by the end of the month.