Monday, February 29, 2016

Leap Day: An Extra Day to Get Stuff Done?



It's Leap Day! And I say we take this extra day to cram more crap into our already hectic schedules!

...or not.

Every New Year I take the time to write down goals, personal and career-based. Some are attainable, some are reaches…big reaches. Inevitably, like the rest of the world, I begin January gung-ho. I’m crossing stuff off. I’m hitting marks like a champ. I’mmmm working 9-5; what a way to make a living! (Does anyone under the age of 65 listen to Dolly Parton? No? Just me? Okay, then…)

This year I decided to do something different. Every year come June I’ve lost my motivation to read 4 books a week. By November I’m so done with couponing I haven’t touched a newspaper in three months. And inevitably I find myself looking at my growing list of yearly goals, generally written in four different colors of ink because I just kept adding (you know, on those days you had a ton of coffee and are fairly certain you can, in fact, sew a king-size quilt in just under two hours and have dinner on the table by six.), only to feel like I let myself down, like somewhere in the world there is some go-getter with shiny hair and flawless skin carefully marking off her last achievement. Why aren’t I her? What the hell did I do all year?! 

This year I’m setting six goals— three for my personal life, three for my career. To some this may be underachieving, and that’s fine. Those people probably accomplish a lot more than me, and I’m happy for them. But personally, like most people living in 2016, I have a lot of balls in the air. I’m not just a blogger, I’m an author. I’m not just an author, I’m a homemaker. I exercise daily. I’m learning to sew. I’m determined to take a decent photograph before 2020. I’ve always wanted to learn sign language. I never got around to crocheting…despite having all the supplies in my closet for a solid three years.

…I think I lost my point somewhere. Hold on while I dig through my purse. Here it is…

The point, my dear friends, is that when we have a goal list that encumbers three loose leaf pages, front and back, all we see is the aspirations we didn’t check off. We never notice the accomplishments we did complete, maybe even mastered. It’s human nature, an annoying trait but an inconvenient truth, that we tend to focus on the negative. So instead of patting yourself on the back for hitting the gym three days a week, we tell ourselves we should have gone five times. Instead of celebrating our vast improvements in cooking, thereby avoiding chemical-laden takeout, we think about that one hectic day where we gave in and ordered pizza (and by one day I mean, like, twenty-five). We never give ourselves a break. We never celebrate our achievements. 

Well, I say screw it! Instead of setting myself up to fail, instead of bogging down my already hectic schedule (because I’m, you know, alive…) I’m cutting myself some slack! I’m setting reachable, yet important goals. The point is PROGRESS. It’s like that Pinterest pin said, because I find most of my life’s mantras have been made into Pinterest pins: It’s not your speed that matters, it’s that you’re moving forward.


So, you overworked-readers you, what are some of your goals for 2016? Are you simplifying or are you determined to take over the world? Where do you stand in this fabulous, wondrous New Year?

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