This time of year you see a lot of “best of” lists across social media, blogs, and TV outlets. I always loved the VH1 shows that would look back at the year (or decade) and recap the highlights. I used to say it was my favorite part about my birthday. I’m sure there is some trait in my personality type that makes me more inclined to reflect and savor the past. That’s probably where my love of scrapbooking and journaling comes from, right?
This year I ran across a blogger who reflects on her year by asking two simple questions: what worked for me? And what didn’t work for me?
In evaluating my own year through those questions, I realized that there was definitely one big thing that worked well for me, and that was setting specific goals. I started off the year with a big goal list, and each month I would break the goals into more specific action steps. You probably remember this because I would provide monthly updates to keep myself accountable. I originally started this practice because I was feeling so overwhelmed with life that I was simply trying to survive, which left little time for intentionality. I would get to the end of the week and wonder “what did I even do with my time this week?” Setting these goals encouraged me to spend my time more intentionally and allowed a means for measuring my progress.
Unfortunately about halfway through the year I abandoned the practice (I’m sure I had a good reason at the time but I cannot for the life of me remember what it was). I’ve started to notice the same sort of un-intentionality creeping into my life recently, although for different reasons—my now very free schedule leads me to believe I have all the time in the world, which usually means I don’t use it very wisely.
So I pulled out my handy dandy goals notebook, and started planning for 2016!
But first, a recap on my 2015 goals (because even though I hadn’t looked at them in about 6 months, I still did a pretty good job with the list!):
Daily Quiet Time- Success! The key was to move my Bible, Journal and devo book into the bedroom. Now it is the first thing I do before I even get out of bed. Not sure why it took me so long to figure out this system.
Serve in the Church- Success! It may not be exactly what I had pictured when I set the goal, but we are leading a home group and it has been really fun.
Buy A House– Success! We moved in February 14.
Make it a Home- everyone tells us our house is very “cozy,” which I choose to believe is a good thing. I love it!
Rent out our House for Ironman—Success!
Garden/Chickens- no chickens yet, and the garden wasn’t a huge success, but I got a few things to grow, and I now have experience to guide me this next year.
Cut Back on Hours- Success! I cut them to zero.
Revamp Blog- Success!
Start Writing My Book- Although I haven’t started the official writing process, I have started a course to help me, I have lots of ideas in my journal, and an actual topic decided upon. So this is progress!
Journal More Regularly- as previously mentioned, moving my journal to my nightstand helped A TON. Now I write almost everyday, which is great since this is how I process things.
Continue with my Dr.’s health plan until reaching “maintenance stage”- I decided in August that this was no longer necessary. I wasn’t seeing the results that either of us were expecting, but I finally wised up and realized that I know my body better than anyone. So in that case, I consider this a success!
No Swelling—mostly a success! As long as I stick to my strict elimination diet, I have no swelling! There have been a few flare-ups that I have been able to pinpoint causes for, but I have also been able to reintroduce some things that used to give me problems, so this is progress!
Run/Workout More- I don’t know why I thought I had to run as my form of exercise. Since realizing that I don’t have to/shouldn’t do things I don’t enjoy, it has been much easier to accomplish this goal. I’ve been doing yoga a few times a week and we just joined a gym, so I am excited to be able to take some more classes there and work on low intensity exercises that are supportive of my health.
Invite people into our home- Success
Spend more time with friends- at first I wasn’t sure what to compare this to, but then I remembered where I was at last year and I can DEFINITELY consider this a SUCCESS!
Read 25 books- I think I am closer to 90. Definitely a success.
Expand genres- Sort of. I think I read a couple fiction books : )
Learn to play violin- Nope. Maybe next year?
Take classes at NIC- I was registered for a photography class, but with how busy I was at the time, I decided to withdraw. Instead it was a year of self-instruction! (Not with photography, but lots of health stuff)
Visit Kaylee and Jake- Success!
Go to California- no, maybe next year?
Pend Oreille Shores- I’m not sure why I put this on the goal list. Maybe because I didn’t think I would be able to take time off work? My last day of work was the first day of vacation, so we got to stay ALL week! It was heavenly.
Camping- Laszlo and I went on our first camping trip, and I actually had fun!
What did you accomplish in 2015?