SixEight Life


Lessons from Goals- January

I am one month into my “13 Goals for 2013” quest, and things are going pretty well. As a form of accountability, I plan to update you on my goal progress every month, and follow up the progress with a few lessons I’ve learned thus far.

1. Run a Half Marathon I’ve been a slacker on this goal. I’ve run a few times and researched some potential Half Marathons, but that’s about it. Planning to get back into it this month.

2. Innovation as a professional every month – My innovative idea this month is to use blogging in the classroom. I’ve developed a blog and assignment for my students. They’ll start blogging in February.

3. Read 24 books Doing pretty good on this one, I’ve read two books already and am almost finished with the third. I read “Undaunted” by Christine Caine (very good, I’d highly recommend it) and “You are a Writer” by Jeff Goins (also good, but slightly repetitive at times). I’m almost finished with “UnChristian” by David Kinnaman and Gabe Lyons (Good, but very scholarly so it’s taking awhile to read it)

4. Get Biscuit certified as a therapy dog This goal is being put off until March/April, when we are able to budget for the first step, registering Biscuit for a training class.

5. Encourage two people a month with a handwritten note Did it, and it was wonderful. It was good for me to get my thoughts and express encouragement in this way. I barely made the goal this month as the second letter wasn’t sent until the 31st, but it happened.

6. Write 60 blog posts This is my eighth post on this blog, and I wrote three guest posts for Wellspring Living this month. I’d say I’m well on my way to this goal, which is exciting.

7. Get to know people who different from me I’m still praying through what this goal will look like, but I’m working on it. I’m taking a class right now called “Dignity Serves” and I’m learning a lot about service and reaching out to people who are different from you. I’m hoping to make an actual commitment to an area or project in February or March.

8. Enter into a mentoring relationship This has been an interesting goal as well. I’ve got a couple one time meetings planned with some ladies I admire, and I’m meeting regularly with my new friend Cindy in an informal setting which is proving to really be enriching and encouraging. She’s been a great mentor to me. I also have been trying to ask more questions. If I’m talking to a woman older than me about something, I’ll ask her for her opinion, thoughts or experiences. I’ve been learning a lot, and I think it also is encouraging to the person doing the advice-giving. One thing I will note that’s been difficult with this goal has been rejection. I reached out to one woman who I thought would be an incredible person to learn from, and she never followed through. It was disappointing but a good lesson for me. I’d still like to find an older couple to mentor me and Brent together (let me know if you’re up for that challenge) but that will come with time.

9. Pay the car off The biggest piece of reaching this goal is discipline. We’ve been focusing on paying off a couple smaller debts, then hopefully will start to tackle the car in April.  It’s easy with financial goals to go off course (especially when sushi or end of season clothing sales are involved).

10. Increase my political activity- first name basis with elected officials – This is moving along nicely as well. I emailed my senator today and he remembered me and our meeting beforehand. I’ll be seeing him this Thursday. I’ve got to reach out again to my state rep as well. I’ll probably try to reach out to my national elected officials later in the year.

11. Publish a professional article (or at least write one)– I have a writing partner and we have an idea. We also have our methodology and an action plan and timeline. This article will certainly get written this year. I’ve also engaged in conversations to explore possible conferences and publications to reach out to.

12. Memorize the book of Philippians – I bought a nice little moleskin notebook this month and hand wrote all of chapter 1 in the book. I’ve been reading and studying it as much as possible. After chapter 1 is memorized, I’ll move on to Chapter 2. I will say it’s amazing how even re-reading the same scripture over and over again still brings fresh perspective each time. I love the Word.

13. Love my husband in a new way every month – I realized in January that I hadn’t given my husband much social media PDA lately. It was something we did a lot when we were dating but it has tapered off. So, I gave him some social media PDA. It was fun.

Lessons and Takeaways: TIME. Time was a huge thing I reflected on during this first month of goal attainment. I realized that I am wasting a lot of time. I’ve had to remind myself repeatedly to get off of Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter and read my book. I’ve had to force myself to turn off the TV so I could focus on writing. If I’m going to make these goals happen this year, it will take time and discipline.

So that’s my update. Do you have goals for the year? How are they going?

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