Home Forums Challenges Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

This topic contains 111 replies, has 1 voice, and was last updated by Avatar of bandicoot bandicoot 2 years, 7 months ago.

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  • #159606
    Avatar of Netleigh
    Netleigh
    Member

    I thought I’d start recording plans about goals prior to the start of the year then I can pick up the one that feels best come January!
    I’ve already identified that I thin I’ll spend a month focusing on
    1. Paper management, I have filing systems and paper handling set up but I fail to maintain them on a regular basis. I need a kick start month to get it all in order then a weekly paperwork night for the rest of the year may be the way forwards.
    2. Fantasy self removal – she who knits and sews a lot.
    3. Sorting out the family photo burden.
    4. Fantasy self removal – she who has lotsof art supplies that haven’t been used in years.

    That’s enough of a list to start of with, doubtless I’ll be inspired by whatever you all come up with and I don’t want to cast my goals in stone.
    The concepts of ATAD, OIOO and planning my social events will go on in the background but are not goals in themselves.

  • #197880
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Netleigh, this is great. I was wondering where to start making notes on how I want to set up my goals, but where else than here?

    Project:
    Balance; personal health.
    [i]Actions:
    - Diet: cut the occasional junk food and unhealthy treats out
    - Exercise: 30 min walk as often as possibly, preferably seven days a week outdoors
    - Sleep: proper daily rhythm – I’m craving for this by now because I see how important its consequences are
    - Stress/migraine: more quiet times for me, those walks are a miracle cure really, and if money is not too tight regular massage to untie the knots in back/neck/shoulder region as well as a couple of sessions at chiropractor. Also mindfulness, have some good books at home.

    [i]Project:
    Routines and decluttering; a fresher, less filled, more organized home, which is the extension of myself.
    [i]Actions:
    - I already am well on my way regarding smarter habits/routines around the house, but there are still some that I need to work on. “Anal” routines seem to work wonders and they control my tendency to procrastinate beyond expectations.
    - ATAD and FATAD; like Netleigh concluded it’s getting more complicated to find things when opening just about any drawer or closet, so I’ll have to create a more specific way of tackling this. It might be smart to combine it with my half-yearly cleaning sessions (flat is divided into six areas and they rotate monthly). Fixing a thing a day will still happen at random, though.

    [i]Project:
    Future career; wide open but something has to happen.

    [i]Project:
    Bureaucracy – Finances; personal and company bookkeepings.
    Actions:[/i]
    - Finish reading http://www.thesimpledollar.com/31-days-to-fix-your-finances/
    - Use the gloriously simple iCompta to keep track of personal income/expenses
    - Use GnuCash for double bookkeeping for company
    - Learn more about VAT (ugh, this is a tough one because I’m not very enthusiastic about it)

    Project:[/i]
    Bureaucracy – “If shit hits the fan” folder to bank vault.
    Actions:[/i]
    - Read the bible written by whoever that I found online and get ideas for making a personal collection of important data.

    Project:[/i]
    Paper war: some type of deadline.
    There’s a reason for recipes not being tried, etc. If I want to digitize material it’s fine, but scan only meaningful things and do scan it or it goes.
    Actions:[/i]
    - Look the material through and determine monthly projects, then start scanning. Stick to one subproject at a time.

  • #197887

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    This is a great idea. I too want to spend part of this month reflecting on things done and left undone (which sounds more like the Book of Common Prayer than housework) and use the insight to plan a mission for next year.

    Like you have said, ATAD is still a productive approach that I will continue, but it is getting to be more fine-tuning than measurable progress for me.

    I also am interested in working on refining my household routines — aiming for less work, better results. I think the key to this is to do things before they NEED to be done. I’m considering grabbing one of the calendars that will start arriving in the mail any day now and using it to record housework observations. I can make a note that (for example) on Jan 1 I dusted the ceiling fan in the living room and on Feb 1st it looked dusty again — so maybe I should put that on a schedule to dust every three weeks so that it NEVER looks dusty. I need to think about this. It might be a breakthrough, or it might break me. Ninakk: rigid routines work for me when they work, but when they break down they totally collapse. I work best with flexible guidelines and looming deadlines :)

    I also have a paper monster to tame. And I want to schedule more fun into my life. And get a few work/personal projects completed.

    Need to think :)

  • #197891
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Susan, that applies to me too, the collapsing, I mean. I had my own household collapse faster than you could say detonate in September, but it has happened quite a few times before that as well. I’m so used to the cycle of my actions or lack thereof that it’s not stressing me out anymore, at least nowhere near it used to. I’ve basically just accepted that there are times when my living space is completely and utterly bombed up; exams in previous life, personal problems, you name it. I guess I’m at a point where I’ll try any “rigid” way to see whether the answer would actually be in more control rather than “Oh, shrug, I’ll do it when I feel like getting it done”, which has to be honest to myself led me into deeper waters than what my 2011 experiment has ever pushed me out into. We’ll see, maybe I’ll be here in a year stating that I’ll never touch a calendar again :)

    Thinking is good, but I also need to act sometimes, which is one of my secret take-home messages of this year. My husband has kindly informed me on more than one occasion that I stress him a lot when never finishing anything but jumping from project to another. I tend to plan, plan, plan yet sometimes don’t act according to those grand plans at all, so rigid routines might be what it takes to kick my behind into motion. I’m trying to remember Newton’s laws in physics and apply them onto myself; the first step is always what requires the most force but once the body is in motion it won’t stop (well, let’s pretend my flat is vacuum and it will work, hehe).

  • #197892
    Avatar of irishbell
    irishbell
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Wow, I may as well be a sloth compared to you ladies.

  • #197895
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    No, no, irishbell, you’re not. I’m just in a phase of “know thyself” and am trying my best to use the energy that is bubbling up from within to create a framework. I hate boxes, but then again sometimes I love them, go figure.

    There’s something incredibly refreshing and invigorating about new beginnings and I really need one. Calendar years have always kept me enticed for some reason and this coming year I intend to try my hardest to both observe time wisely as well as use it for creating good stuff around me.

    I’ve simply noticed I feel the best about me when I’m active and might describe it as wanting to dance salsa; once I saw an incredibly hot female dancer only a couple of years older than I and she danced like there was no tomorrow. Then and there I opened up finally and admitted to myself that I had been dormant for so long, saw her practically take life and give in one large wave of energy that it became almost larger than life somehow. I know I will dance salsa one day, but until then I know there is flow to create in other areas of my life, too, and this thread as well as the accountability ones to follow is an attempt to control the reins; loose when damage won’t be done and tight when disaster might appear. As an example, the great musicians who aim for and reach the stars practice consistently and also focus a lot on the basics, whereas others who remain not so great may practice but with a much more chaotic style. I know so well from my behaviour during the past decade that I don’t thrive in chaos, but need structure to blossom no matter how much I detest being tied down.

    There was some silly youth film on dancing, Center Stage I think, where a teacher advised her student to go back to the stick thingy (apologies for not knowing the correct name) to dance basics. It stuck with me and now is the time for me to go back to the basics so I can do great things. You reap what you sow, I’ve heard, and after years of walking in the dark I finally know my life has a purpose, I’m destined for someting great. On someone else’s scale it might be very small or huge like Empire State Building and beyond, but I feel unless I don’t start pursuing whatever it is in seventh gear I might regret something the day I die. My intention is never to put anyone down but to simply run my own race in my own tempo and if I can help someone along the road then even better.

  • #197898
    Avatar of irishbell
    irishbell
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    nInakk- oh gosh, no harm done, I wasn’t meaning to sound negative!
    Having been a SAHM of 5 girls for my entire adult life(youngest is 15)
    I’ve been so organized, clean, tidy, somewhat structured, always thinking
    where, who, what, when, etc. etc. that I suppose I’ve become a little less
    goal oriented the last few years. I seem to like it, it seems to suit me.
    not that I don’t look at my to do list several times a day, for fear I’ve forgotten something!
    If i truly think about it, I guess I am a short-term list maker. yes, that is what I am.
    It seems to work for me, so far.

  • #197907
    Avatar of bandicoot
    bandicoot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    2012 already!

    i have a loose plan for the first few months only.

    january: for the first four days we will be cyclone-prepping for our house sitters.
    spare fuel, generator tested and ready, candles and matches supply, ample gas bottles, ample cat food, workshp battened down with oil pallets backing up roller doors, clear any stuff from the property.
    then, road trip! i aim to soak up some culture, have a few laughs with friends and family, catch up with some customers, enjoy the scenery and space with my husband. also, i have to buy tile and bathroom fittings for february.
    main goals: be organised in good time and enjoy myself.

    february: bathroom renovation. this will occupy the home front for the entire month.
    main goals: keep house clean, keep ourselves clean, with probable breaks in water and power supply.

    march: possible quick trip to nz, a family thing. depends when exactly it is….i have visitors coming from canada and they will take precedence.
    main goals: don’t get into any rows with stupid and inflammatory family members. look fabulous out of one travel bag. resist boutique shopping in auckland.

    april: nine days in bali to listen to gamelan music, get a lot of massages, hang out with a cousin and talk about books.
    main goals: rest. relax. recharge. resist getting a pile of clothes made. i am allowing myself two custom-made linen aprons and that is all i actually require.

    may: organise a trip somewhere different for dh’s birthday….all in secret.
    i literally want to drive to the airport without him having a clue beforehand. incredibly difficult. i am thinking new york…uluru…tokyo…stockholm….chiang mai…belfast! just one of them, not all of them, lol.
    main goals: maxxxtreme secrecy and lots of fun.
    work commitments might rule this one out, but i will give it my best shot.

    overall goals: have fun, travel, make some money, create a beautiful simple bathroom, stay healthy.

    but today’s goal is to take a leisurely drive to town and have a manicure!

  • #197951
    Avatar of luxcat
    luxcat
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I suspect it will be a busy 2012 for us, which is partially why I’m being so focused on completing some of the larger looming tasks left over from 2011 before we start the new year.

    In a nutshell…

    1) in spring we plan to buy a house and sell our flat.
    2) I have a #1 goal for 2012- get healthy. I got really derailed last spring/early summer by a flare-up of fibromyalgia, and now that I’m feeling better I want to get into a real exercise routine, improve my diet even further, etc so that I have a better chance of staying healthy and active.
    3) continue to improve upon my spending and budgeting habits- which we’ll need to do given #1!

  • #197954
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    ATAD:
    I think what will work for me is the question “Would I pay to have this item moved?”, because I can’t relate to natural disaster scenarios or fire in a home.

  • #197981
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Okay, time to approach 2012 from the monthly angle.

    January
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Alcove and walk-in closet

    These areas are crammed due to space restrictions, but I’m happy to say I have decluttered them a lot lately. If we were to live in a two- or three-room flat the bedroom would not be filled to the brim, which is what I need to remind myself of. This makes January and July good months for projects other than ATAD, although FATAD could get some focus; those projects are depending on hubby, though, so I’m taking baby steps. If considering the tax year and the newly started up one-woman show, January is optimal for bookkeeping and budgets.

    [b]February
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Bathroom

    The bathroom needs only a bit of fine tuning re ATAD, which can easily be done during the first week of February when it is time for the half-yearlies. The next weeks could be devoted to the other bureaucracy project, the crisis folder for the bank vault.

    [b]March
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Entryway

    The entryway houses outerwear as well as miscellaneous stuff, which come to think of it is a rather greyish area. The first week will be spent cleaning in a nice and tolerable tempo, but the next ones might be perfect for going through photos (only the paper ones for now), diaries, calendars and some of the cards and letters in the basement memory boxes. If time does not fly too fast, there are even more potential smaller projects waiting there.

    [b]April
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Balcony and basement units (warm and cold basements)

    In April I like to clean the balcony after the winter even though it is still too cold to sit there. Laundry can be dried there, though, and then it is nice to know the space is fresh. It is a large balcony, so usually I need several days since I get bored quickly; this area involves all windows, too. During the second week I can quickly go through the refridgerated cold basement unit because we do not have lots of food there now, but some vases, canning jars etc. The big crying smiley is the warm basement unit, which is in complete chaos and I’ll do what I feel like. You might see me procrastinate a whole lot then… I am not willingly assigning any other smaller projects for April except for health-related ones and weekly routines regarding incoming mail, scanning, shredding and such; maintenance mode is acceptable.

    [b]May
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Kitchen

    We are possibly installing a dishwasher which means some decluttering may ake place sooner than in May, but that remains to be seen. Deep cleaning the kitchen is fairly slow, but it can be done during a week. The paper war seems like a good project.

    [b]June
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Office corner and living room

    The paper war continues, unless I in April may use an office-sized scanner, which is fast like lightning. When vacuuming the books and wiping the bookshelf clean, I always find some more books to donate, but that project is done in an evening.

    July
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Alcove and walk-in closet

    The fun starts all over. What consoles me is now that I am on my way since May this year, I can sometimes skip some parts because I won’t have any area go as bad as they have before. I can also see less stuff around me now, which makes the future maintenace sessions even less daunting.

    August[/b]
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Bathroom

    September[/b]
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Entryway

    October[/b]
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Balcony and basement units (warm and cold basements)

    November[/b]
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Kitchen

    December[/b]
    Half-yearly cleaning area: Office corner and living room

    I have noticed in 2011 how important it is for me to first take care of everyday maintenance tasks and only once they are done should I do something to declutter and organize or the flat looks like a bomb exploded in here. Something to remember in 2012!

  • #197993
    Avatar of Netleigh
    Netleigh
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Nina, I like the Project goals, very GTD. I need to think my monthly goals into actions like you have done to give me better focus.

    Bandicoot, I’m impressed by how much fun you will be having with your goals, now you are past the major work of uncluttering and getting your leg back together again!

    luxcat, you have reminded me that I have not written fitness goals down in my plan, I need to sneak them in each month so I don’t overdo it, get achey and tired then stop again.

  • #197995
    Avatar of Netleigh
    Netleigh
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    irish,
    I’m imagining a goal of being a sloth! Quite a good thing to do from time to time to just chill out from being super over organised.

  • #197999
    Avatar of Conny
    Conny
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    wow ninakk, that is impressive. All i have is last years’ General To-Do list that has to be updated and am certain that many items will be carried through to 2012.

    I shall have to give serious thought and then act on all my started projects.
    Have far too many and my energy and enthusiasm ( “oh i can do that too!” ) is not what it used to be. Facing that fact as we both near 60 is hard to do but must be done.
    Better to plan for the next decade now that we still have some “umph” and presence of mind, and regular income, than when we have less of each.

  • #198007
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Thanks for the feedback!

    My aim is to create routines for the boring household maintenance so that there would be more time for fun. If cleaning or organizing collides with social events, the latter obviously come first. We only live once after all. Chores should be like brushing my teeth twice daily…

    Some fun I want to do in 2012:
    - Learn better cooking skills; the meal planning and keeping the kitchen organized are excellent support tools for this and a reason for me to want to invest time in the routinely maintenance is precisely to have more time to cook relaxed and dare try new techniques and recipes. This is ongoing in everyday life so no need to focus more on it. I ordered the Harold McGee book on cooking basics, the Flavour Thesaurus by Niki Segnit and Pastry or whatever it is called by Michel Roux just yesterday; excited!

    - Learn sewing basics and do some patchwork; bought the Sewing Bible which is awesome! Also want to relight the fire of my craft blog.

    - Take up writing on my book again.

    - Promote the Etsy shop more, create more products, start Big Cartel and the website up.

    - Meet new people; most of my close friends live elsewhere now so it gets rather lonely from time to time. Do you want to meet me? :)

    - DokuDienstag; a documentary every Tuesday. We did that a few times this summer and it was fun.

  • #198014
    Avatar of Ella
    Ella
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I would love to meet you, ninakk. When’s your next trip to California? Meanwhile, how about meeting new people plus learning new cooking skills by taking some cooking lessons? WAY more fun than a book, I guarantee it. :)

  • #198016
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Ella, possibly next year in August or September!

  • #198017
    Avatar of pkilmain
    pkilmain
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Nina, you make it to San Francisco, I’d consider flying down to meet you and Ella! :)

  • #198018
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Oh wow!!!

  • #198019
    Avatar of pkilmain
    pkilmain
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’m working on a plan for 2012, which is looking to be a difficult or at least challenging year for me on a personal level. I have been seeing a naturopathic doctor to see if I can work on my depression without resorting to medication. After a bunch of tweaking, I’m finding that a combination of Vitamin B-12, Sam-E, and using a SAD light, that I’m feeling marginally better. At least I have a little more enthusiasm and energy and am getting more done. I know that if I add some regular exercise into this equation that things should get even better, but I’m still having trouble making myself actually do anything. Working on getting up and moving is my December goal. I need to do some swimming in preparation for Hawaii, and I think once there I will have more interest in getting out and doing something physical. :)

    Still working on the actual goals, but I agree with luxcat that my primary goal is to be healthy. Not unhealthy now, but I need to be further up the scale on the healthy side rather than hovering near the bottom, or heaven forbid, sliding into the unhealthy side!

    More later.

  • #198032
    Avatar of bandicoot
    bandicoot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    pkilmain, i wish that some of my friends were as wise as you.
    i feel very strongly that an holistic approach to mental health is far and away the best deal for everyone.
    i respect the fact that many people are going to require medication, no matter what else they are doing, but overall healthy behaviours are sure to enhance results.

    hey, just go to the swimming pool…..i have had a lovely time these past few months at our local pool!
    we walk around in the water and talk, and there is something very refreshing, energising, yet relaxing about being in the water.
    it is fun watching the little kids in their learn-to-swim classes, and the serious regulars pounding out the laps.
    we goof off and float around and chase each other and laugh like fools.
    go, enjoy yourself!

  • #198035
    Avatar of Charity
    Charity
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    2 key things happening in 2012 for me.

    All my work for my uni course must be done and handed in by the end of April. When marked and second marked, I then need to sort it all out into two huge portfolios, one for the uni and for the charity that I work for. I think the deadline for this is June.

    DS starts primary school in September (he’ll be 4 years and 6 months old then). I need to increase his independent living skills by then, so we shall work on getting himself dressed, going to the bathroom with minimal help, and suchlike. And it would be great if I could convince him to feed himself; he’s so lazy! I do tend to just do it for him because it’s less hassle and gets vegetables inside him, but I do need to have the battles on this front.

  • #198086
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’m wondering about scheduling the fun stuff. It might create too much pressure to write in the calendar to sew but from experience this fall I know I lose momentum at some point and end up with unfinished stuff if I do it when I feel like it. Thing is, I know it brings me joy to be creative in different ways, but lately there have been so many distractions pulling me away from relaxing, which sucks since I also partly allow them to take over. Tricky balance.

  • #198092

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Ninakk: why don’t you try it and see if that works for you? Give it a month, and if it doesn’t work, try something else.

    I also need to work in more physical activity (in addition to the twice-a-week pilates.) It was great in the summer when I was swimming, but I know I won’t go to a public pool. Walking with DH hasn’t been working — he’s not in the mood to walk after dinner and instead goes out late at night. I think I walk too fast for him and he’s avoiding walking with me, so I’m not going to push it. I am going to start on the treadmill again — it’s now cool enough so the lack of reliable AC out there won’t matter. Need to develop some goals.

  • #198100
    Avatar of pkilmain
    pkilmain
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Ah, bandicoot, thanks. You are right – It shall be my goal this week to get to the pool a minimum of two times, preferably three! :)

    Charity – can you just sit your son down with a plate of food, insist he stay there til he’s eaten it all (assuming you gave him what he usually eats, or a little less) and then walk away from the table? At least this might work at breakfast and lunch, if your family eats together for dinner. Will he eat cut up raw veggies? good finger food.

    Nina, yes it’s fine to schedule fun things. They’re important!

  • #198135
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’ll try Susan’s suggestion for January and February (think a month is too short to say since there’s always some hickups when trying something new); excellent suggestion for someone who is often “all or nothing”, even when it’s not necessary or downright unbeneficial :)

    pkilmain, I know so well how I’ve acted pre parties in my past. Sometimes I’ve had no expectations at all or might even have been rather “Oooh, I don’t want to go”, but once the clothing was picked out, shower had been used, makeup was beginning to look decent and some good music was streaming from the player, the mood miraculously began to rise. And once at the party, it became one of the best ones ever because there were no huge expectations. I function like this when it comes to couch-to-5K, other exercise, many other hobbies too; very silly but on the other hand so predictable already that I should somehow be able to beat the short-term laziness. Something to work on in 2012! Thanks for the push in the right direction.

  • #198271
    Avatar of pkilmain
    pkilmain
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Tuesday – i went swimming today, and realized, yet again, that I really do enjoy it. There were only 5 people in the pool, so it was quiet, both noise and water wise. I could swim at my pace without sharing a lane, and no one was churning up the water.

  • #198274
    Avatar of bandicoot
    bandicoot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    o that sounds wonderful!

    it is summer here of course, and our local pool is full of people at every minute of the day.
    the dressing rooms were insanely draughty and cold in winter, but the pay off was a lovely quiet pool.

    i have to get back to the pool….it has been a busy few weeks and i went from once-a-day to just once in the last five weeks. tragic.

  • #198275
    Avatar of lottielot
    lottielot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    That’s the weird thing about swimming: you dread it, you put it off, then you actually do it and it’s lovely! Like most exercise only more so :) Here is a tip for motivation to exercise. When you get up, get dressed for exercise if at all possible and put all your stuff out ready to go. If you’re going swimming, put your costume on under your clothes. If you’re going to the gym or whatever, put on all your workout gear. It’s not 100% foolproof, I ended up changing back into normal clothes on Monday due to too little time. In general though, it’s a really subtle but quite powerful way to quiet those voices in your head. The ones who are busy making up a million excuses for why you shouldn’t go! And besides, you look and feel stupid all kitted out for exercise if you don’t actually go and do it :)
    I’m having difficulty with next year’s goals, I just don’t know yet what next year is going to look like or what I’ll be doing. I suppose even if I start a PhD it won’t be till next October, so I could just plan for january till October, but it’s a bit of a mental block for me.

  • #198279
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’ve gotten used to the idea of scheduling some sewing and while it first freaked me out, I think it’s a bit the same as working out; the thought is dreadful but once I get going it’s really nice. And I’ve felt bad about accumulated sewing gear (the sheer amount of it) when I haven’t also started using them up more often, but I very much enjoy the craft and believe an appointment would work perfectly.

    It’s not like I didn’t show up all those years at lessons of piano, flute and musical theory (?) as well as choir practices – started in 1986, second grade, and kept going while in uni still until practicing became too complicated. I’ve also turned up at numerous other hobbies and only ever stayed at home due to illness or a couple of episodes of forgetfulness. Why does it seem so strange to make an appointment for something fun happening at home then? Especially when it has been rather easy for me to make an all-day appointment of doing laundry for instance?

  • #198286

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Ninakk: what you said makes sense. I think most of us had parents schedule things like lessons and regular practice into our childhood lives and somehow dropped what could have become a regular practice when we became adults. For me, I think I have become more results/goal-oriented and less process-oriented. The fun things without tangible results get shoved by the wayside. I think part of the trick is to schedule the time without making it seem like another darn chore that needs to get done.

    Lottielot: You can always change the plan. How would your life be different with or without a plan? For me, it would be better to live in the present than to base everything on something that may or may not happen 10 months from now.

  • #198288
    Avatar of clutterbug22
    clutterbug22
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    @ susanintexas,
    with the thread’s current emphasis on hobbies and exercise, do you think your DH’s New Year Goal could be to get the old Soloflex machine up and running?!;)

  • #198290
    Avatar of rutheverhart
    rutheverhart
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    While we’re talking about swimming, I heartily recommend water aerobics. I always sleep well afterward. I’m lucky that my husband likes to go with me.

  • #198291

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    clutterbug: That is one of the options. I’ve suggested trying to find all the parts (which are scattered all over the house) and seeing if it can be made functional, at which point we can keep it and use it, sell it, give it away or trash it. You did give me a brainstorm, though. I could suggest spending a heap of money on buying a new home gym (say, $1,000) and that might inspire him to see if this one can be made to work. {yet another evil grin.}

  • #198294
    Avatar of pkilmain
    pkilmain
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Lottie – I’ve used that “dress for exercise” trick as well.

    And I did mention, of course, that this is an indoor pool at the local high school. Seniors get time of their own each day so we don’t have to compete with the regular lap swimmers. And Ruth we have water aerobics as well, though a little early in the day for my schedule at the moment. It currently is not daylight until about 10 am, and I avoid going out unless I have a doctor appt or the like.

    So my plan is to swim again tomorrow and perhaps on Friday. The local pools altrnate having weekend hours, so I need to see if ours is open Sat.

  • #198307
    Avatar of Emilie
    Emilie
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    My general goal is to find some strategy that works for me in terms of exercising more. The funny thing is, I know there are lots of kinds of exercise that I do enjoy. I like cycling, yoga, dancing, walking (sometimes), hiking, ice skating, roller skating. I enjoy some team sports, but I’m so unathletic that the team needs to be SUPER-chill and casual. Right now, I go to a yoga class once a week, and I bike for transportation a few times a week, as well as walk a little.

    I guess I see exercise as a last priority and something that takes away time from concrete projects that I could be working on. Yeah, I know that makes no sense.

    As for sewing…I can relate. I’m in a weekly class, but it ends next week, so I’m not sure how I’m going to stay on task after that.

  • #198332
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    It’s almost 10 here and I’m still not completely alert. As long as I don’t have a job or studies to go to, I think I’ll have to accept that I’m fully functioning only around 10-11 and should schedule some scanning into my morning routine during the dark months. I used my light therapy lamp the first time today and hope I will see some benefits soon; it’s still getting darker and the lack of snow isn’t helping either, so I’ll work around and with this fact of my physiology in January and February, possibly March even.

  • #198340
    Avatar of pkilmain
    pkilmain
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Nina – hang in there! Only 16 more days until we start gaining light again. Of course that means that a month from now we’ll be at the same level we are now. Our snow is pretty much gone after a weeken of warm temperatures (40F, 5c) and wind. We’re supposed to have about 2″ today, but the temps are still above freezing. I am using light therapy for the first time this winter, but DH has used it for sevral years. Since I’m using it incombination with some other things,I am not sure how much it adds to making me feel better, but I’m keeping it in the mix.

  • #198345
    Avatar of chacha1
    chacha1
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I love all you people!!

    @ninakk, I schedule the fun stuff FIRST. You know the work/life balance parable: figure out what the Big Rocks are, and put them in the jar first. Then the medium rocks, then the small rocks, and finally the sand. If you put in the sand first, the big rocks will never fit.

    January: teach at ballroom boot camp, call in sick day after (heh). Cookout with friends the next weekend. Reserve following weekend for couple time. Help host social dance week after that.

    February: competition on the 4th, eek! paperwork and tax planning the next week. do something nice for Valentine’s day. dirty weekend over Presidents’ Day. social dance week after that. work on bookkeeping/taxes.

    March: fancy dance affair 1st weekend. competition & teaching the next weekend. weekend OFF after that. social dance week after that. keep working on bookkeeping/taxes.

    April: final push on taxes, 1st weekend. competition the next weekend. then off to NC for vacation for a week! desperate housekeeping & groveling to cats the last few days of the month.

    You get the picture. :-)

  • #198353
    Avatar of Nina
    Nina
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    My first 90 days I will spend doing p90x. I lost 20 pounds this year but I know I need something to get me to continue to lose weight and get into shape. I like the idea of the 90 days as it’s a time you can see yourself sticking with something. I people are interested I could update on the declutter fat post?

  • #198362
    Avatar of Ella
    Ella
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’ve been giving this some thought. I’ve decided to link my monthly goals to our new monthly ATAD threads. I will choose ONE area each month to declutter, pare down, clean up, fix up, and organize. I have so many to choose from! LOL. Paper, books, clothes, kitchen, computer… I’m not sure which area will be January’s goal, I’ll decide when I get there. But having seen myself faithfully following through with ATAD every single day since the start of the End of the Year thread, I now have self-confidence in being able to ATAD with focus on one area per month. I’ll keep myself accountable by posting progress on the ATAD thread every day.

  • #198373
    Avatar of pkilmain
    pkilmain
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Second day of swimming this week – which was my goal. I plan to go on Sat again, having checked and this is the weekend the pool here is open. Again, it wasn’t crowded. Did 2 more laps than Tuesday!

  • #198396
    Avatar of Astreja
    Astreja
    Participant

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Lately I’ve been having a bit of decluttering success with a “zone” approach, whereby I stay in one area of the house and do serial mini-projects, rather than leaping from kitchen to bedroom to living room to bathroom. For at least the winter and early spring, I think I’m going to stay with this idea and spend a month at a time working primarily in one area.

    In January 2012 I’ll start with kitchen tidying and renovation. When I’m done there, I want to rework either the master bedroom or upstairs bathroom; after that, the other bedrooms; and finally, my 2nd floor study.

  • #198399

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’ve had mixed results with a zoned approach but on the whole I’d call it useful. I never get done as much as I think I will, and wander off to do other random acts of uncluttering, but it had kept me from avoiding the tough spots in favor of the easy pickings.

  • #198422
    Avatar of Ella
    Ella
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’ve realized that in order to declutter more deeply in 2012 (instead of only the
    low-hanging fruit), I need to resume selling on eBay. I used to be designated as a Top-Rated Seller and I enjoyed the selling process (I know a lot of you hate it, but not me). But I lost that status when I stopped selling 18 months ago after I completed my downsizing move to a studio apartment. I still have many valuables I want to sell. I need to start afresh on eBay and build up my top seller status again.

    So in preparation for launching into January’s decluttering goal/area, I’m going to spend the remaining three weeks of 2011 getting back up to speed as a seller.
    I think I’ll start a new thread to ask for tips from those of you who are currently successful eBay sellers.

  • #198431
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    OH MY!!! The book I ordered and received today, The Creative Habit by Twyla Tharp, will be my bible for the creative life in 2012. Currently I am on page 16 but she has already blown my mind. So happy I chose it for sis and one of my best friends too.

  • #198432
    Avatar of chacha1
    chacha1
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    @ninakk, I LOVED that book. Her other book “The Collaborative Habit” is also excellent.

  • #198445
    Avatar of Jennifer
    Jennifer
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    You are all very inspirational! I finally had some time tonight to do some planning for 2012. I like the idea of a monthly focus. So…

    Being ridiculously type A, I had to make a chart, one row for each month and a column for each area of my life I want to consider – House, Personal, Fitness, Diet, Wellness, Finance, and Projects. I’ve slotted in thoughts and ideas for the first quarter. Some things were on the mental list for last year and not completed, so I am hopeful that writing them down with a better system will ensure they get done!

    Same as last year, I will take a couple of days off at the end of December for a big purge. I like to start the year off clear of at least the top layers of junk, and I’m sure I’ll have more things to get rid of though I have been much more stringent about what comes into my house this year.

  • #198462
    Avatar of bandicoot
    bandicoot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    pkilmain, you are on fire with the swimming!
    well done, and won’t you be pleased, come january?

    me, i’ve almost completely dropped the pool….it’s temporary….but i have been doing more yoga.
    i think my overall goal for 2012 is : more yoga
    everything else simply falls into place when i am yoga-fied.

  • #198485

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’ve been mulling over a new fitness initiative for 2012. Signing up for the Pilates month through adult community education last June was a life-changer for me. Only one school district has their schedule up online. There a six week long Zumba class on Tuesday mornings (which would work with my schedule) and a yoga intro on Saturday afternoons, but I’m not sure I want to give up every Saturday in February (plus I know I have an all-day conference one of those days.) The other nearby district promises to have their schedule online by January 4.

    I will also look into joining a gym this year. Most of them offer a free seven day pass, which would give me an idea of whether a gym is a good idea and, if so, which one. We have several convenient ones — less than 10 minutes away — so there’s no excuse not to look into it.

  • #198490
    Avatar of irishbell
    irishbell
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    SIT- Zumba is fun fun fun! Hard work, too!

  • #198495
    Avatar of pkilmain
    pkilmain
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Zumba is hard, but Ididn’t enjoy it as much as I thought I would. I think it was because I didn’t much like the teacher, esp the second one who taught at my gym, and because basically I’m pretty uncoordinated. :)

  • #198508
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Thanks for your idea, Jennifer! I made a little chart as a first draft of a January-June overview.

    My categories are:
    1. Health. Projects: diet, exercise, sleep, wellness (haircuts etc.).
    2. Medicine/biochemistry. Projects: “my open future” (private until I’m ready to announce something), stress and migraine (mindfulness and some other books to read).
    3. Home. Projects: weeklies, monthlies, halfyearlies and the ATAD to go with halfyear area, FATAD in priority order. Financial stuff, scanning and such fall into the special project categories here alongside the routine tasks.
    4. Free time. Projects: reading (novels etc), sewing, …
    5. Company. Projects: Etsy shop, Big Cartel shop, social media, web site/own domain. Have to start somewhere, not too much at a time.
    6. Other stuff.

    Doing it like this I realise there will not be a lot of time unfilled :) Good, I like having a purpose and feeling time is spent wisely.

  • #198521
    Avatar of Ella
    Ella
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Please be careful if you zumba. My doctor has been seeing a lot of zumba-related injuries.

  • #198565
    Avatar of lottielot
    lottielot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Ella: I reckon the zumba injuries are because a lot of people who do it do no other exercise. If you have no fitness base and take up a new sport, injuries are more likely. All my friends who have taken up zumba have never really exercised before. Whilst I think it’s great that a class motivates people to start exercising, over the years you exercise you really tune into your body and how it feels, and that helps prevent injury. Plus you learn correct form, which is very important. I’m sure susan will be ok, given she does Pilates.
    Susan: try a range of classes and find the best teacher. I love doing different classes, though my favourite is Body Combat. A good teacher really helps. Not everything is immediately enjoyable though: I did Urban Rebound for 2 years before I started liking it! Before that it was a chore, now I love it, probably because I’m much fitter than I used to be. I like to mix and match classes: cardio ones, strength ones, toning ones, loud shouty energetic ones. And running fits into life easier than classes, albeit there isn’t the motivation of signing up for a class. The only thing I hate is going to the gym, boring boring boring. I do it if I have to, but classes are much better. I know lots of people who love spinning, though I’ve never really tried it. Try out a whole range and see what you like.
    I’m putting off my goals till January, I’ve decided. Actually not very long!

  • #198569

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Thanks for the Zumba advice! I suspect Zumba is not for me, really — it’s just that’s all community ed seems to be offering except for boot camp. Been there, done that — except I got paid for it and got to carry a rifle.

    I think a gym is probably the way to go, and perhaps I’ll concentrate on that in the first quarter of the year — taking them all up on their free 7-day pass options and perhaps finding one that suits me. What I really need to do is work out my upper body — walking takes care of my legs, pilates takes care of my core — but when I’m not swimming, the arms go . . . Need to figure out what my goals are: it’s not to be a gym rat, or a dancer :)

  • #198588
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member
  • #198614
    Avatar of arthelemis
    arthelemis
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Health goal:
    -Go to free (for student) kick-boxing sessions 2 times a week. The gym schedule works with mine, for once, as I have enough time for a shower and lunch before my class. It’s gonna be more motivating than 1h of stationary bike on my own.

    Finance goal
    - If possible, double the amount I put monthly in my saving account. Since my revenues are at best, unpredictable, this could be hard. But I’m looking more for the average equivalent at the end of the year
    - Cut on the oh-so delicious coffee and hot chocolate from the uni coffee shop and bring my own thermos with hot water for tea or instant (we now have to pay for hot water at uni…)

    General/lifestyle goal
    - No new clothes for a year challenge. I reserve the right to buy any item that fill a gap in my wardrobe. I may or may not have the occasion to do a paid internship in my field, and therefore, I will not pass the chance of doing so because I don’t have any office appropriate clothes in my wardrobe. Also, if I do happen to buy something, I must get rid of 2 items of the same nature (1 in, 2 out rule)
    - 1 in, 2 out rule applies to all purchases or acquisition I may have to make (textbooks are not included in this challenge)

    And stop procrastinating over important term papers by writing motivational post on unclutterer forum… Ok, back to work now !!

  • #198802
    Avatar of Netleigh
    Netleigh
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I sat down to make a list of things to consider picking from for monthly goals and they were all ‘work’, either decluttering or decorating. While they are things I want to get done they carry associations of being things I ‘should do’ so I realised as Ninakk has already done that planning in some fun stuff first is the approach that will make me feel most positive about life.

    Positive life enhancing goals.
    January -
    visit the David Hockney exhibition at the Royal Academy
    Go on our skiing holiday
    February -
    continue skiing holiday
    Go to Fascinating Aida concert, I must see their song ‘Cheap Flights’live rather than on youtube.
    March -
    Go to see Les Miserables again, I’ve been talking about doing this for ages and have finally arranged some tickets.

    All 3 months have to have more exercise incorporated into my life, the skiing helps as I need to tone up before and have a fitness boost as a result of a week on the slopes.

  • #198804
    Avatar of Netleigh
    Netleigh
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Heres the other lists.

    Projects I’d like to do for ‘fun’.
    Family history research.
    Family History scrapbooking – digitally so no paper supplies involved
    Gardening.
    Possibly some sewing.

    ‘Work’ type list, in no order but I will pick three for the beginning of the year that fit around other things going on in life.

    1.Paperwork, review the filing cabinet and in tray system, try to keep to doing paperwork weekly.
    2. Photos, sort physical ones, scanning those I want to scrapbook, tag and purge digital ones.
    3.Fantasy self decluttering – deal with Sewing and Knitting, Art supplies, Scrapbooking supplies
    4. Family History – go through what I’ve already researched and tidy it up to make continuing with it easier.
    5. Kitchen cabinets, empty, clean and restock after decluttering.
    6. Books, review what I want to keep again.
    7. Jewelery, some I don’t want and I need to sell it or have it remade into something I will wear.
    8. Decorating, Study, Bedroom, downstairs loo,kitchen, living room priority in that order, not all this year!
    9. Garden, put in raised beds, deal with invasive jasmine and perennial weeds before planitng anything new.

  • #198806
    Avatar of lucy1965
    lucy1965
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’m trying to figure out why this topic makes me want to flail and cry helplessly; I’m usually good at lists!

  • #198810
    Avatar of Mimi
    Mimi
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    lucy, never say die… i am lurking here every day and wish i could write about my goals. i love lists but i am a bit helpless with monthly goals. but there is still a lot of time to think about it!

  • #198821
    Avatar of Netleigh
    Netleigh
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    lucy,
    Have a good flail and cry. Your life sounds unplannable at the moment, too much uncertainty about DH and work and are you moving etc.
    I’m just indulging in list writing prior to sticking a pin into the list to see what to tackle in January-March. I find it helps to unload everything from the brain and then I will be relaxed about picking things up when the month ahead feels right for that goal.

  • #198823
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Dearest lucy, do not cry. Seriously, those tears are a waste. This thread has made me see how fast the first six months will fly by, due to a very important deadline of mine in May. That thing will take up most of my time and all the projects that I have pondered, may or may not get done. This new year I intend to prioritize backwards in comparison with 2011; health first, then Huge thing, then fun and then the various aspects of home maintenance. Most likely it will be much more fun than being all serious and performing as perfectly as possible.

  • #198963
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Have you remembered your Bucket List as part of the goals for 2012? I haven’t but need to do something about it! A really good thread on the subject:

    http://unclutterer.com/discuss/topic/whats-on-your-bucket-list-or-uncluttering-your-life-goals

  • #199422
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Since last week, I’ve stumbled upon a couple of life-saving concepts, project management (YESSS! Finally graps the full process of it!!!) and good goal-setting techniques. These are a couple of nice places:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SMART_criteria
    http://www.mygoals.com/helpGoalsettingTips.html

    I started outlining properly all my ideas, even grabbed a pen and paper (yikes, it’s been a while), and realized unless I tame and control myself really well, I’ll still live amidst chaos with me running like a headless hen all over the place, not reaching any heights due to lack of discipline. And also time; I want to do more than there’s hours in the day and so I’ve prioritized even more than when I first joined this thread.

    Now that I’m accepting a system instead of complete freedom and now that I’m choosing more wisely than before, it seems like I’ll do at least some things well instead of only halfway into something before jumping on to next project. It’s exciting yet a bit scary, but I can’t wait for the new year to be here!

  • #199479
    Avatar of Ella
    Ella
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Post-false fire alarm…
    I decided that a nice gift to give myself this Christmas afternoon would be to settle down and calm down with a cup of tea and pen and paper to jot down some notes for my monthly goals in 2012.

    I now have a list of 10 goals/projects, at least 2 of which could easily span a couple of months. I’m undecided as to which goal will be January’s. Logic tells me that I should start with the bookcases (both here and in storage) and declutter the excess books on eBay, thus clearing space to spread out the next project(s).

    But my closet is pulling hard at my sleeve and pleading, “Pick me, pick meeeeeee!”
    It’s a mess in there, all right, from cramming in stuff I can’t deal with yet (“Next week for sure” I keep telling myself as I jam the closet doors shut). Before I go to sleep each night, I have to squeeze the doors even more tightly shut. I can’t bear to have them open even a crack, lest the monsters inside come swarming out to get me.

    There’s a saying in Italian to buck up one’s courage: “In boca al lupo!” (“Into the mouth of the wolf!”)… so I think I’ll post that saying on the closet door and get to work starting January 1st, or maybe even sooner. I expect there’ll be plenty of good pickin’s in there for both ATAD and FATAD.

  • #199481
    Avatar of bandicoot
    bandicoot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    in boca al lupo!
    i am adding that to my handy phrases….what a great saying!
    wolf is the nickname of one of our norwegian forest cats….looong nose, steady gaze, huge paws, shaggy shaggy coat….so it will take on a new dimension around here.

  • #199492
    Avatar of luxcat
    luxcat
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I took inspiration last week from one of the posts on the main page of unclutterer.com and decided on doing small monthly goals and one larger quarterly goal for 2012. I already have decided on the first six months and the first two quarters… some of these are goals I’ve been struggling to implement for years. I think by “taking small bites” in 2012 I have a much better shot. Pardon the caps please, I copied and pasted rather than re-type.

    MONTH GOAL: EXERCISE 30 MINS A DAY 6 DAYS A WEEK (TUESDAY OFF)
    MONTH GOAL: FLOSS EVERY DAY AND CONTACTS OUT EVERY NIGHT
    MONTH GOAL: GIVE UP ASPERTAME/ALL FAKE SWEETNERS
    QUARTER GOAL: WEIGH XXX LBS BY END OF MARCH
    MONTH GOAL: GIVE UP BOTTLED WATER
    MONTH GOAL: SPIRITUAL PRACTICE DAILY
    MONTH GOAL: NEVER LEAVE THE HOUSE WITHOUT PAYING ATTENTION TO HAIR/CLOTHES/BASIC MAKEUP (I know this one seems silly, but it’s a personal thing)
    QUARTER GOAL: TRACK MY FINANCES MONTHLY-KEEP A FILE WITH CREDIT CARD BILL//PAYSTUB ETC SCANNED AND STORED MONTH BY MONTH OR QUARTER BY QUARTER- ON TOP OF MY 365 DAY TRACKING PROJECT (this latter this is my attempt to get a good idea of where my money goes, so I can trim the fat and save faster for some future goals, a-la “your money or your life” book)

  • #199493
    Avatar of Ella
    Ella
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Hmm, I hadn’t considered doing quarterly goals, but now I’ll have to give that some thought. Good list, luxcat.

    btw, for the past 3 weeks I’ve posted a little chart inside my bathroom cabinet for daily flossing… I give myself a star sticker for each day’s success. It works! :)

    I’m now so excited about working on my Closet goal for January, I went to my
    library website and reserved several books about clothes decluttering and closet organizing. The project I most dreaded is now the most eagerly anticipated.
    Weird how that works in my brain.

  • #199494
    Avatar of luxcat
    luxcat
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    ella I totally get it. I’ve been very un-ready to lose weight over the last few months, but I read some books on the topic recently and it’s gotten me quite excited to start. It’s great how a few good ideas can get one in the mood.

  • #199495

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I, too, find that reading about a change can be motivating — except for those times when I substitute reading & research for actually DOING (a tendency of mine.)

    Two good books recently:
    (1) I gave “Eat This, Not That” to DH for Christmas. He tends to get an idea locked into his head and even if it’s no true, or no longer true, it sticks there. I thought this might be a good antidote to ideas such as “chicken is always good’ and “salads are always good.” We’ll go over parts of it together (in a “get a load of this!” sort of way) and both learn some new strategies for picking foods.

    (2) Willpower — I think I learned about that book on Erin’s blog and my-oh-my it is worth reading! They heartily recommend against overly ambitious new year resolutions — willpower is like a muscle, they claim, that fatigues when too much exertion is required of it, but that can be strengthened with more moderate exercise. A string of resolutions at the beginning of the year are doomed to failure. However, they also found that putting something on a list to deal with later can relieve us of the nagging worry/guilt of dealing with it now and can help us achieve goals.

  • #199497
    Avatar of Jennifer
    Jennifer
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Willpower was on Erin’s blog and I read it too, so great! I think I need to re-read it at the beginning of the year. Another one for those of us struggling with weight/health/diet issues is Women, Food, and God. It’s fantastic, check your library!

  • #199543
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    There’s a quote that I found on Pinterest, supposedly by Karen Lamb, who I’m not acquainted with, but anyway, it goes:

    “A year from now you will wish you had started today.”

    How I get from here to there is by taking one day at a time and that’s how the pyramids were built, too.

  • #199546
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’ve thought of adding small, really annoying habits of mine to my list of goals. First and foremost, I want to stop being late to most places or if not exactly late then very short of breath. I hate that and it’s very rude to not show up on time if someone is waiting for you. I adore my dad, he’s always on time, usually even way ahead which sometimes is annoying, too, but anyway, he’s my hero on this one.

    Do you have some small things you need to work on such as the flossing mentioned above? I’ll add that one (thanks!!!) and the mouth guard thingy for sparing teeth when grinding them in my sleep. I’m sure I’ll think of more later.

  • #199579
    Avatar of lottielot
    lottielot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Too many to mention, ninakk! I used to always be late but I’ve trained myself to get better about this. It takes a lot of work and I struggle when the kids have to cooperate, but I find if I have good habits in other areas (like always putting a load of washing on when I get up, or keeping the kitchen tidy), then I don’t get the whole ‘I need to do x first’ which makes me leave late. Adding an extra 5 or 10 minutes buffer and overestimating travel time also really helps. Life is much less stressful if you’re on time, no more apologising and being embarrassed. I still have the odd occasion when I slide back, but in general I’m much better than I used to be.
    The flossing thing: I keep the floss next to my bed and do it when I climb into bed each night. I used to keep it in the bathroom but would forget or be too tired. If I’m in bed though I usually remember. I’m going to have a little think about which habits I’d like to work on next year.

  • #199583
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    lottielot, when living in Denmark I always used my bike and I still think in terms of no bus stops slowing the pace down. I need to check the timetable estimates again to be on top of my game, because this bad estimate thing I have going on is killing it completely. Plus there is a lot of road work everywhere around the city, open only in the warm season (it hasn’t been below freezing here yet), which adds to the mix quite horribly. I have to add the buffer you mentioned as well as see to it that my bus card is filled up again; they moved the kiosk where I was able to do that and the closest is 1 km away now so I’d be stuck without coins in my wallet (which I usually don’t have). Have quite a few appointments coming up in the beginning of January; dental, general doc, foot massage.

  • #199592
    Avatar of Ella
    Ella
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    ninakk: You could penalize yourself for lateness like I did with the cursing habit. Make it stiff – say, the equivalent of a dollar per minute – and I guarantee you’ll be cured in no time!

    And for me, it was a powerful thing to pay out the penalty money immediately by decluttering it directly from my pocket to a street musician, instead of letting it sit in a penalty jar.

  • #199609
    Avatar of T
    T
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I had some success last year deciding to create new habits by telling myself that I was someone who did… So, rather than nag myself to floss my teeth, I just told myself, repeatedly, that I’m someone who cares enough about my health to floss my teeth. I also ‘proclaimed’ myself someone who makes her bed every day and someone who wears at least one piece of jewelry besides my watch every day. It was much more effective for me to believe that I was a certain, positive way than it was to be motivated by my own nagging.

    I worked on one habit per month for most (not all) months, keeping all the previous ones. They all worked pretty well except for “I’m someone who keeps up with the laundry” (although I’ve fallen off the wagon on making my bed, in part because it’s covered with laundry each morning when we all sift through the baskets for something to wear!).

    I’m going to work on my list of habits/characteristics along these lines for 2012. I’m also reaching out to a few friends I’ve not seen in a long time to make specific plans for visits; being in closer touch with those I care about is a priority for me in 2012. More to follow, for sure!

    And now I’m going to go deal with the laundry and make my bed!!

  • #199612
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    T, that sounds very smart. During lifestyle change/dieting for weight loss it’s equally important to remind oneself of what is allowed rather than what one should stay away from. Funny I haven’t thought of expanding that concept wider into other areas of my life. Thanks!

    And Ella, I’m pondering penalties but haven’t quite decided how I should tackle it. I’m thinking something more like a carrot, because I can speak horribly to myself if I get free reins :) I’m not saying the money thingy wouldn’t work, because it would, it’s just that I really can’t afford supporting anyone else since I should be there playing myself. A piano is a bit difficult to hoist around though, haha.

  • #199626
    Avatar of bandicoot
    bandicoot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    i read a nice blog post this morning ( and i do not know ehere exactly, sorry), suggesting that one make lists of things one would love to do in the coming year……puts quite a positive spin on things doesn’t it?

    this year, i am definitely going to cook for friends more.

  • #199632
    Avatar of Jackpot
    Jackpot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Hi all,

    I’ve read the forum for several months and figured with the start of a new year I might as well jump in. You are all so streamlined and have such well thought out plans that I’m afraid I must look a little simplistic in my approach.

    I’m a grad student finishing my Ph.D. so my big goals for the beginning of the year are:
    January: finish the scientific journal article I have been writing.

    February: present my original proposal (a graduation requirement) to my research committee; this satisfies the last of my requirements (except for dissertation and defense) and my committee will give me the OK to look for a job.

    March: begin applying for jobs and start intensive decluttering of the house because I am not staying in this town. I’ve been decluttering on a steady basis since I began reading this blog; I think I may be a minimalist in training because I have become more productive as the visual clutter has decreased. Unfortunately the lady I give my decluttered things to (who distributes them through her church) is retiring and I don’t know where I will rehome my giveaways. I guess I will figure it out.

    One last goal: get more exercise. I have been a deskbound slug the past year. It shows–and worse, I can feel it. Ugh.

    Can’t wait to see a new year of goals met!

  • #199633
    Avatar of Emilie
    Emilie
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Welcome, Jackpot! I have an exercise goal as well :)

    And…I decided I’m going to do it on a month-by-month basis. I took out my calendar for January and wrote down specific modes of exercise for 4 or 5 days out of each week. At the end of the month, I’ll evaluate how exercising more regularly made me feel, how easy/hard it was to fit it all in, and I’ll adjust accordingly for February. I think this will work, so I’m pretty psyched!

  • #199635
    Avatar of lottielot
    lottielot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Welcome jackpot!
    Bandicoot: I love the positive spin thing. I’m resolving to do more activities with my kids next year. Ds1 loves Shakespeare so I’m going to find a few plays to take him to. I took the boys to a fabulous talk on the science of fireworks in November: more stuff like this would be good. It’s a right faff trekking into London but definitely worth the effort. And less after school activities requiring me running around manically so I have more energy to do stuff as a family.
    Emilie: there are lots of exercise apps where you can easily record workout details. I log mine on a running website, but it also has lots of other types of exercise you can record. You can also record comments for each workout, it’s quite interesting looking back. I find it very rewarding being able to log all the miles and time spent exercising.
    Career goal: find a PhD if I don’t get funding. I’ve been looking around a bit but I probably need to talk to more people.

  • #199642

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Another venue for tracking fitness goals is the President’s Challenge. Fairly simple: for the first 6 weeks you commit to a half hour of activity 5 days a week to earn an ‘active lifestyle” award. After that, you earn points — I’m within a month of getting my ‘bronze” award. I was surprised that this was as motivating for me as it has been, especially during the first phase when I didn’t want to blow a whole week my missing a day. They also have a program for children.

    I too am adding more “life” goals — I feel that I’ve prepared, now it’s time to better use the time and space I’ve created.

  • #199649
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’m beginning to feel like tap dancing again, so there might be some activity in that area come Fall 2012. It’s expensive and I’ll have to postpone taking lessons, but I’ll enjoy it more once I’m lighter anyway.

  • #199662
    Avatar of Emilie
    Emilie
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Earning points has an interesting effect, doesn’t it? I can play those Wii dancing games forever, trying to beat my previous score. I have to cap the time I spend, because once I start it’s really hard to stop. And they do get strenuous.

  • #199692
    Avatar of Ella
    Ella
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I like the positive spin, too. I’ve been reading about the “Three Good Things” exercise (in Martin Seligman’s book “Flourish”), and I’d like to do this as a nightly journal for a 2012 goal. I haven’t had much success journaling in the past, even though I’ve tried numerous different approaches over the years. But the Three Good Things is so quick and simple: just note down three things that went well that day, without necessarily going into lengthy detail. Supposedly, the effects are twofold:
    1) better sleep that night (if you write just before bedtime); and 2) better awareness the next day of more things that are going well. The idea is that our minds tend to highlight and dwell on the bad stuff while the good stuff fades into the background, so this exercise is a mindful yet easy way to reverse that tendency.

  • #199701
    Avatar of Ella
    Ella
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    bandicoot: I think I found that blog post you mentioned…?

    http://www.bemorewithless.com/2011/how-to-make-a-love-list/

  • #199746
    Avatar of sleepykitten
    sleepykitten
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    T, I love the idea of saying “I am the sort of person who cares enough to (insert goal here)”. Good idea.

    I don’t think I will be focusing on monthly goals – though I do have standard new years resolutions. I suppose I could consider them “month 1″ resolutions, see how things are going at the end of January, and move on from there. I definitely see the advantages of monthly/quarterly goals.

  • #199772
    Avatar of bandicoot
    bandicoot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    ella, you are a perfect detective!
    that is the very blog post indeed.

    three good things is a wonderful exercise.
    it truly does make one’s thinking more positive.

  • #199777
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I love the sound of three good things! I have a small notebook that has been just sitting there and I’m longing to jot stuff down again after such a long time of being purely electronic. Once I started outlining 2012 this month, I grabbed a pen and paper, and oh my how lovely it was! I think I’ll place the notebook by the bed with my new, fave pen. Maybe it’ll make something happen in the writing department finally, especially since I know the pen will work like a charm; detest bad pens.

  • #199783
    Avatar of grey
    grey
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    i’ve so enjoyed reading this thread! i’ve been jotting notes about my new year goals and the one change i’ve made from years past is to define the “win”. i’ve learned that i give up if success is open ended so i need concrete goals. saying “read more” would never work, so i committed to reading 12 new books. unlike years past where i feel like my resolutions are a set up for failure, i’m actually looking forward to bettering myself this year.

  • #199785
    Avatar of bandicoot
    bandicoot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    i have just committed to a 21 day cleanse-and-yoga, starting january 20th for me.
    the usual thing: no coffee, meat, sugar, white flour.
    i am off to teuxdeux to enter the dates and lists of meal suggestions.

  • #199786
    Avatar of lucy1965
    lucy1965
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Three good things — I could do that, I think.

  • #199855
    Avatar of Conny
    Conny
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Two days ago i wrote down several things i could do to finish several of my started projects in such a way that each item could be called “a goal for the day”.

    Those started projects which would need several days to finish were not included in that first list but were written down on another list.

    I want to see how i do with the first one (it has 20 items) in January and February.
    Most are the ‘to-do indoors’ kind of projects that would be perfect for horrible weather days, and most should not take more than a few hours to do, unless i get distracted :-)<- a forever problem.

  • #199859
    Avatar of irishbell
    irishbell
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Bandicoot: if you’re of a mind to share, I’d be interested in what you come up with for menus. :)

  • #199864
    Avatar of bandicoot
    bandicoot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    irishbell, i would love to chat about it!
    i like talking about food.
    i will start a thread about it in the next few days.

  • #199871
    Avatar of irishbell
    irishbell
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    Perfect, I’ll be here!

  • #199875
    Avatar of Ella
    Ella
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’ve decided against trying for quarterly goals in addition to the monthlies. My mind just doesn’t think in terms of quarters… nor even seasons, for that matter, being in California. I’m looking forward to the monthly framework. My list of 12 monthlies are really more projects than “goals.” I plan to chip away at each project daily (or so I hope, using ATAD and FATAD) and then I’ll see how far I get by the end of the month.

    I don’t want to set myself up for a specific target at which I might fail. I know myself well enough that I’d start dreading the task, and get anxious and resentful about it. That’s been my downfall in past resolutions and goal-setting. So this time I want to enjoy myself and find ways to make the projects and the process fun and rewarding. So, as a yearlong companion to my monthly projects, I’ll keep the Three Good Things journal. And that’s basically it for my 2012 plan, at least at this early point in the game. :)

    “Mentsch tracht, Gott lacht.”

  • #199879
    Avatar of bandicoot
    bandicoot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    my number one goal is to enjoy myself, have fun, be happy.
    i cannot imagine getting to the end of a year and saying, well, i ticked off everything on my to do list, i got a LOT done, but god i feel stressed and miserable.
    really….why are we even alive?
    i think you’ve got the right approach, ella.
    i am all for setting myself up to win….it feels so much better!

  • #199887
    Avatar of Netleigh
    Netleigh
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I woke up early, all the Christmas break sloth is having an effect, soon to be messed up by a very late night/early morning.
    I have expanded the goal list and have fun stuff scheduled for the next three months. I nominated the things that are bothering me the most for January as the months goals, but I’ll wait until next year to start them.
    One more day of relative inactivity to go!

  • #199894
    Avatar of ninakk
    ninakk
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’ve found myself very much at ease with the things I’ve planned, because for the first time ever I already know when I’ll get to an area of the house the next time and even if I don’t have the energy to do something perfectly, like I was supposed to in the past, I’ll cover the “missing” part in six months. The headstart I got on the walk-in closet was a very good experience due to this; I kept staying positive about the deep cleaning and reminded myself more than once that I’ll see the back of those Antoniuses again very soon. Actually I had a lot of fun killing the dust bunnies!

    Since ATAD will roll with the half-yearly cleaning, I’ll get to purging soon enough again and I can drop the feeling of desperation entirely. I believe I’m on to something here and it was such a good idea to try tweaking this year’s experience of establishing a rhythm at home instead of just sticking with it because “that’s what one does”. The key to not stressing is as we all know to learn to listen to oneself better, but even if it’s very logical and simple I personally still struggle with when to say yes or no.

    I’ve been thinking of what fun experiences DH and I can have in the coming six months and have already a nice little list written. It contains some of my bucket list and if we are to strengthen what was broken, we need good experiences.

    It also hit me that I should have some rewards for being good, productive. Haven’t figured out yet what I want, but I’ll try to think of experiences rather than stuff.

  • #199901
    Avatar of sleepykitten
    sleepykitten
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    ninakk – I hear that having rewards is helpful, but that has never worked for me. In 2012, I am taking the approach that “the thing is its own reward”. In other words, trying to change my mindset so that I am grateful for the opportunities to clean/eat healthy/exercise/whatever. (Not sure yet if it will work – but I feel like it will.)

  • #199903

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    sleppykitten: I agree that *random* rewards have never worked for me — rewards that are not tied into the achievement itself (as in lose 10 pounds, get a manicure.) What HAS worked are “contingent” rewards — having completed this, it now makes sense to reward myself with that (as in lose 10 pounds, it now and only now makes sense to buy a new pair of jeans, or now that I’ve pruned my wardrobe and organized the closet it then and only then does it makes sense to purchase new clothing.) In a way, the reward (for me) only works if it is the logical conclusion of the achievement — sort of a bonus.

  • #199908
    Avatar of PJ
    PJ
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    I’ve never found rewards to work for me either … primarily because if I reaaally want the manicure (or dinner out with friends, or new book, or …) I won’t force myself to wait for the goal to be reached to get it. Actually, I think I had better luck with the idea (can’t remember which time management system I got the idea from) with scheduling my fun stuff in, doing it first, and then getting to work on my goal task.

    I’ve been so inspired watching you all plan your yearly/quarterly/monthly goals, and have been trying to figure out what mine might be, but I feel too unfocused yet to pin myself down. And I have questions. Do I pick the most important stuff to get done, even if I might have more resistance to it? Do I pick the easiest stuff, even though it won’t have as much effect and therefore less motivational impact? How do I plan around special events coming up (my ordination in January, my vacation in February)? How would I keep track of the goals, on paper, on computer (keeping in mind that I just decluttered my fridge of an outside/gardening to do list that didn’t get touched this past summer)? Then there’s the issue of how much to tackle at once …

    Sigh. Much as I really love the idea of setting monthly goals, I’m suspecting that I’m just not there yet. I have always been so good at procrastinating, and I often have such strong issues of resistance, that I think I’m going to stick with what’s working right now. Which is to say that I have to keep working at the clutter and organization and routines – nibbling at things, chipping away at them, going with the flow when I have lots of motivation and energy. If I have a specific task in mind but start to feel resistant, I say to myself “Ok, but you have to do *something* – what CAN you do right now then?”

    Hey, maybe that IS my monthly goal for January. Just, every day, “you have to do *something*.” ATAD, FATAD, take a trip to the donation drop off, fill up the recycling bin, deep clean something, deal with a financial task, etc. Very non-specific, but committing myself to forward progress every day.

  • #199910
    Avatar of grey
    grey
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    @PJ – my only goal for the last few months of ’11 was simply “do something nice for the house everyday”. sometimes that was a decluttering binge, other times it was hanging a picture on the wall, or just plain doing the dishes before bed. whatever i had the motivation and time for. it was so much more successful than really specific goals and put me in a much more positive place overall. i say give it a try and let us know how it works in month :-)

  • #199911

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    grey — that’s pretty much what I have been doing for the past few months — just keep doing what I’ve been doing, +1. One small improvement every day.

    PJ: you have a lot going on over the next few months — a culmination of a long process — that’s the achievement of a goal in itself! Enjoy it. I think goals sort of emerge from our dissatisfactions and it doesn’t make sense (to me) to invent goals for the sake of having them. Perhaps your goal for the next few months is to celebrate.

  • #199917
    Avatar of PJ
    PJ
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    @grey and @SIT, it’s nice to know that strategy also works for others. That strengthens my resolve that it’s the right way for me to approach things over the next little while. Over the last couple of years, I’ve gone through cycles of working at the house, sometimes tackling a closet thoroughly, other times doing rough sorting of papers on desk and counters, etc. I *know* that all those efforts contributed to where I am today, but at the time, they always just seemed like a drop in the bucket, and I would get discouraged when I looked around the rest of the house.

    Thanks for the encouragement, SIT. I do want to celebrate this sort of final stage in a long process (you could consider finishing my “curacy” in 1 1/2 years and moving to my own parish as the final final stage). But I am too … anxious for change, I think, to just rest in that. You said “goals sort of emerge from our dissatisfactions and it doesn’t make sense (to me) to invent goals for the sake of having them.” My problem is that I have too many dissatisfactions! Clutter, cleaning, money, even taking care of my own health needs (I really need new glasses, and new orthotics too, although that will have to wait until my foot heals). Since I can’t seem to narrow it down I think it will continue to work for me to just do what presents itself to me as either urgent or easily doable each day.

    I’m sure that my friends think my house just needs “a good spring cleaning” but it’s much more than that. They see only the surface stuff, which could be dealt with quickly through sheer ruthlessness – declaring clutter bankruptcy, if you will, throwing it all out. But beyond the surface there are the unfinished projects, the at-capacity storage, and perhaps most importantly, the lack of good routines.

    Sorry for the downer. New Year’s often brings out the dissatisfaction in me. But really, for the first time in several years, I’m coming into New Year’s not happy with the way I live my life but seeing the possibility, no, the probability, the opportunity, the reality of things becoming so much better over the coming months.

  • #199918
    Avatar of lottielot
    lottielot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    PJ: I could have written that myself! I’m good at coming up with stuff I ‘should’ do, then even better at forgetting/procrastinating/just not wanting to do it :) I have to wait till I’m in the mood for certain things, or till I’m just so fed up of looking at something that I feel compelled to act! I do find ATAD and FATAD helpful though, I feel guilty if I don’t post there a few times a week, if not every single day. Maybe just start off small :) I’m still not sure on my goals for next year yet, and it’s almost here… I’m thinking about different areas. My garden needs some attention, I need to have decking put round dh’s office and fix the grass. My bedroom is still a work in progress which requires a few days’ work. Then there are the self improvement goals, the career goals, so many ideas. I need to think about it more.

  • #199923
    Avatar of grey
    grey
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    would it be redundant or off topic to start a new thread listing the “one nice thing” we did each day?

  • #199952
    Avatar of bandicoot
    bandicoot
    Member

    Monthly Goals 2012 – The planning phase

    grey, i think one nice thing is a lovely idea for a topic!

    i believe that our homes are our third layer (skin, clothing, housing) and that we all deserve somewhere comfortable, clean, and aesthetically-pleasing (however each of us defines that) to live.
    this all takes effort, of course.
    when i do anything positive to my immediate environment, i know that it is doing something positive for myself.

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