What I’m Saying Yes to in 2016

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This is the second post in my goal setting series.  First post is here

I’m continuing with my 2016 goal setting with the prompts from Lara Casey’s blog series and after taking a look at what did and didn’t work last year the next step is to determine what I’m going to say yes to in 2016 and what I’m going to say no to.

What I’m saying NO to in 2016:

  • burn out
  • mindless scroll on social media
  • comparison
  • distractions

What I’m saying YES to in 2016:

  • progress over perfection
  • building and strengthening relationships
  • unplug, rest, and recharge (physically, mentally, and emotionally)
  • weekly/monthly goals to help keep me focused on my larger goals

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I feel really good about setting some boundaries or direction for myself by determining where I’m going to put my energy this year.  And when I look back at 2015, so much of it was full of running around with no focus and allowing myself to get completely burnt out in every sense of the word.  And with that craziness, yet another year went by where I felt like I never reached my goals.  I love the idea of choosing a word for the year, so my word for 2015 was Intention (actually, now that I think about it that may have been my 2014 word too.  :/ ugh)  And what I’ve learned about myself is that I can get so caught up in the “thinking about” and the “planning” that I never actually get around to the doing.  So, for 2016 I chose a more appropriate word, one that also embodies my intention for the year.

My 2016 Word is Action Image

 

So, now that I’ve decided what I’m saying yes to this year and what my word is for 2016, Lara then has you put together a vision board.  I’m a very visual person so this step was really important to me.  I wanted to be able to look and my vision board and have it trigger me to evaluate if what I am doing right now aligns with my goals and ensure I’m taking action to make them happen.  I’d started a vision board over on Pinterest, but I wanted to have something that I could print out and keep somewhere I will see it every day to remind me of where my focus should be.  So, I put this together this afternoon and I kind of love it!

2016 Vision Board Image

I wanted to be sure to have something that represented my marriage and its importance above anything else.  Then of course I have a few things that are great ways for me to recharge – meditation, journaling/my daily Bible study, yoga, reading.  I wanted to also show my focus on health and fitness through working out, eating whole foods, and of course my essential oils.  Throw in some travel, making a home, and creating abundance through my business and you have my vision board for 2016.

So, that’s it for this installment in my goal setting series.  Next week I’ll be back to share my goals and how I’m going to work to achieve them.

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Making Things Happen

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On January 1st I started reading Lara Casey’s book Make it Happen: Surrender Your Fear, Take the Leap, Live on Purpose.  I had been introduced to Lara’s blog last year and had wanted to read this book for awhile.  I’ll spend more time reviewing the book itself in another post soon, but today I want to share with you some of the work that came out of reading that book and also Lara’s blog series on 2016 goal setting.  As with most years, the beginning of 2015 started off very promising and I even blogged about living a year of intention back in January of last year.  Somehow, as often happens, things went off course.  So, I found myself in December wondering where the hell 2015 had gone and feeling defeated that I hadn’t accomplished all those things I’d wanted to do.  So, this year, and we’re only a couple of months in, I’m already finding that the key to making things happen is 1) to take action – actually go and do stuff, and 2) tending – if you don’t monitor those goals and keep focused attention on them, you can’t actually accomplish them.

So, for 2016 I am going to work through the goal setting process and share my progress here not only as a way to be accountable, but also because hopefully someone else will benefit from it.

The first thing Lara has you do is to first check in with yourself – how are you?  I won’t share the epic novel I wrote, but the main theme is that I’m feeling very disappointed in myself for getting so off course last year and feeling like I was basically in the same place that I’d started the year at.  Also, I had a life-changing lightning bolt moment recently of discovering what my purpose is.  And although I feel this huge sense of relief from having identified where I’m going, I’m feeling a bit lost though not knowing how to get there or what it’s going to look like.  But, I’m willing to have faith that as long as I move in that direction, I’ll have the guidance that I need.

Next, it’s time to take a look back at 2015…

What worked:

  • I detailed my crafty accomplishments and new endeavors over on my Cozyegg blog here
  • I was re-introduced to essential oils through my friend Sylvia and became an independent distributor of Young Living essential oils
  • Read the Red Tent (my New Year’s planned start for 2015) and 9 other books
  • I got to reconnect with my friend Marty and visit with other high school friends, plus help raise money for Adele’s retirement
  • Eric and I celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary
  • I completed my first Whole 30
  • I made some new friends
  • I was able to take all of my vacation time and holiday time without having to check in to work at all
  • Eric and I went to visit my Dad’s grave at Christmas, which I’ve been meaning to do for three years
  • I reached out to my mom to try to begin healing that relationship
  • I had a huge attitude shift with work and on letting go of the stress thanks to my essential oils (Stress Away!)

Three Lessons I Learned from What Worked:

  1. I don’t have to kill myself with working so much, I am better if I completely unplug and rest
  2. Essential oils have changed my life and using them daily makes a difference
  3. I do better focusing on one thing until it’s done rather than jumping around. Also, I do better doing my own thing rather than being dependent upon someone else’s participation.

What hasn’t been working?

  • Allowing myself to get burnt out
  • Running around with no purpose/no focus to my actions
  • I feel like I can’t do it perfect so I don’t do it at all
  • Allowing myself to be totally thrown off course by someone else’s stuff
  • Comforting myself with things that are bad for me (eating junk, overspending, mindless internet time-wasting i.e. the mindless scroll)
  • Health challenges
  • Dealing with feeling unbalanced/unsatisfied in some areas and then getting bogged down in the sadness of everything
  • Missing my family so bad it hurts
  • Feeling burdened with the weight of financial stress
  • Procrastinating and not moving forward, staying stuck
  • Completely wrecked over some work situations and office politics
  • Feeling like I never have enough time

Three Lessons I Learned from What Didn’t Work:

  1. Don’t get sidetracked by distractions – distractions can be other people’s stuff, shiny & new, want to vs. have to, mindless scrolling
  2. Take time for me – rest – mentally, physically, emotionally. I need time to recharge.
  3. Concentrated focus is what allows me to be most productive and stay on target with my goals/purpose/projects

What Season Are You In?

I feel like I’ve been in winter – it’s been a really hard season that has stretched over the past several years. I think the beginning of last year was like a false spring, and then winter returned. At the end of the year I was able to do some reflecting and be still and really look at what’s important to me. I feel like now I am in spring, and reaching toward summer when I dig in and get my hands dirty to do the work.

So that’s my look back at 2015.  And I feel like really taking a hard look at what I’ve learned from what worked and what didn’t work will be very helpful in starting to define my goals for 2016 and what I can build on.  Check back soon for the next installment of this series and how I’m working towards defining my goals and working daily to achieve them.

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And So We Begin

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Late in 2013 a friend directed me to this post on a favorite blog.  We talked about wanting to make 2014 the year of living deliberately.  I was inspired to be more discerning in where I focused my energy and choosing to plan over my usual flighty approach to things.  Shortly after the new year my world tilted on its axis and while there were some good memories made in 2014, I carried with me some things that weighed heavily on my spirit during the year.  My eyes were opened wide with wonder for the new experiences I embraced, which was a much-needed counterbalance to my heart’s ache over the empty spaces.

It was only in the last weeks of December that I was able to pause and be still and sit with it all.  What I learned in those solitary moments bathed in white twinkle lights was that it is truly time to slow down, to take care of myself, and to be deliberate in my actions.  So much of my life is internal.  I get caught in my thoughts and my dreams and my plans, but to really and truly live deliberately I have to put actions behind those intangible thoughts.  I have learned that I am resilient.  That even when it seems as if everything that was a constant in my world is stripped away, and even when it feels like God has hit me over the head with a 2×4 to get my attention, I’m still standing.

So now the challenge is what to do with what I now know?  What do I want to create in 2015 for my life?

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I want to focus on good stuff.  I know that sounds overly simplistic, but that’s what I want to do.  I want to be happy.  I want to be my authentic self and all that that brings with it.  I want to be excited about life and not just going through the paces.  I want to open myself up to all that life has to offer – even though that means being vulnerable.  I don’t want to look back on 2015 and say “I wish I could have…”  And the critical thing for me lies in the act of doing, not just thinking about and planning, but the actual doing.

So here is what I’m doing –

★ I want to nurture my relationships.  The past few years have been so full of protecting myself from hurt and anger and all those messy emotions that are just part of life.  I shut down and insulated myself against anything that might find the smallest chink in my armor and unravel me.  I want to allow myself to love and be loved, to reach out and connect and be open to giving and receiving. I’ve already started working on a clean slate and letting the past go and have reached out to a couple of people in the hopes of starting a fresh conversation between us.

★ I want to read more this year, and read more involved books and a little less of the potato chip variety.  I set the same goal of reading 25 books that I had last year on Goodreads.  I’ve started reading The Red Tent by Anita Diamant.  After seeing the mini series, it was a perfect choice to pull off the shelf.

★ I want to spend more time on my spirituality.  One of the things I thought about last year was reading the Bible. This weekend I downloaded the She Reads Truth app and started the Bible in a Year plan.  It’s feeding my soul.

★ I want to be more active.  I’ve spent so much time thinking about and goal-setting about losing weight and getting healthy, etc. but it’s time to focus on the doing.  The 2,015 miles in 2015 challenge on Instagram immediately struck a chord with me.  What better way to encourage myself to get moving?  One step at a time!

★ I want to learn new things.  In the past I have allowed myself to become paralyzed by not doing new things for fear of failing.  But if I never try, I never practice, I never take that first step – I will never grow.  I’m learning to knit and I’m practicing because it’s not perfect and I’m still not entirely sure what I’m doing, but I’m learning.  And I’m learning because it makes me happy.

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I think 2015 is going to be challenging, but I hope also it will be rewarding.  I like to think that January is an empty bowl, full of promise and possibility of what’s to come.

And so it begins…

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New Beginnings

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Hello, 2013!  I can hardly believe that so much time has passed since I’ve popped in to the blog.  Was my last post seriously in September?  No excuse though, we’re just going to start fresh from here.  I have lots of lovely things to share and I can’t wait to dive right in with some new posts.

January is always one of my favorite months, and yesterday I walked out of my house and it was snowing!  Such a rare treat.  But I just love the cozy winter days that January brings, it always seems so quiet and peaceful after the festivities of December.  Of course the new year always brings with it new goals, new resolutions, and a new vision for what life will look like over the next twelve months.  I think it’s been a good start and I am feeling more focused and energized than I have in a long time.  I’m ready to focus on some new things too.  This year I plan to be more proactive than reactive.  I also want to focus on my time management, so that I can better spend my time on creating – in all senses of the word.  I hope to make great strides in our home with organizing and cleaning out the excess.

I think 2013 has a bright future and I’m excited to see what’s in store for me and this blog this year.  And of course, I can’t forget that this year is guaranteed to be a stunner because Pantone has announced that the 2013 color of the year is emerald!  And of course, there’s a polish for that!

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That is butter London’s Thames. So lovely.

So, Happy New Year and here’s to a bright new start!

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Fall Bucket List

I’ve been remiss in reading blogs lately, but I was catching up a bit this weekend during my weekly manicure and stumbled across an idea for a post that I thought was fantastic (and timely).  I love the idea of a fall bucket list.  So here’s mine…

 

Get back to the Gym

Kitten-proof the Office

Take some Fall photos

Make Chili and Cornbread

Visit the State Fair

Have our Annual Photos taken

Buy new chairs and Enjoy the patio

What’s on your list?

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Ready for Something New

Maybe it’s the cooler weather, maybe it’s some weird form of seasonal nesting, maybe it’s just one too many mentions of something that struck a chord with me.  But I feel like I need to get a move on.  I want to get back to fitness and working out, get back on track.  I feel like the life derailment is over and it’s time to head out of the station.  I’m ready for new challenges, new goals, new expectations for myself.  I’m starting today, because there’s no better time like now.  And like everything, I’m just going to take it one day at a time and form new habits.  Habits that serve me better than the ones I’ve sunk into, habits that will allow and encourage me to be more, do more, live more.  I can’t make dreams happen if I don’t do my part to move towards them.

Am I the only one feeling this way?

I’ve reached out to my old walking buddies.  I’ve still got my gym bag packed, now to venture back to the gym.  I’ve got my bottle of water sitting next to me.  I can do this.

It’s more than just fitness and health, but that’s where it really all begins.  You’ve got to lay your foundation, in order to create your temple.

And I’ve started thinking about the rewards.  All those things that will inspire me and motivate me.  Training for a race like my friend Sherri.  Hiking Heleakala.  Wearing boots!  Taking classes from Rachel Brice.

 

Celebrating life.

It’s a powerful thing.

Because it really is so short – so it’s time to make it the best it can be.

 

So, today is the day that my life takes a new direction.

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Tuesday Thoughts

 

  1. I am in dire need of a mani/pedi before my get together this weekend.
  2. I’m feeling the need to get back to the gym.
  3. I need to Feng Shui the shit out of my house – I think the energy in there is getting to me
  4. I’ve really missed blogging on this blog.  I’d like to do it more regularly.
  5. My mom and I want to go and see the Chihuly pieces on display at the Arboretum…I can’t wait!
  6. I have a whole host of things on my to-do list and it just keeps getting longer
  7. There are a lot of things I’ve been missing lately: yoga, church, fresh flowers, sunshine, reading, walking, photography, travel, writing.
  8. I think it’s time to make some changes and breathe some energy back into life.
  9. I want to learn Tai Chi
  10. I’ve run into two references to Kabbalah in the last week, which doesn’t seem like a coincidence.  Maybe I should check it out.
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Sparkle

Barely two weeks into the New Year and I feel like already I’m behind.  I have a few posts in the works that eventually I’ll get written.  I have some new things around the house to share, a recap of our holiday meals, and a book I just finished.  But, since it is a new year and all, I thought I should take a moment to think about my intentions for 2012.  I really do hate resolutions, because it’s kind of like making a list of all the things I’m definitely not going to do this year.   So, instead I try to put some thought into what I want to do this year, what I’d like to focus on.  Last year, I wanted to focus on just two things:

1. Focus on me

2. Cut down on the crazy

I think I did better at cutting down on the crazy, and it’s a good thing too because 2011 kicked me in the ass.  I worked on not volunteering for things, not spreading myself too thin (since I already was), and trying to let go of people and situations that only added to the crazy.  As far as focusing on myself though, that could have been better.  But, I tried to keep it in perspective throughout the year, especially when I felt like I was barely treading water at some points.  Imagine what the year might have looked like if I’d tried to hold myself to a host of pie-in-the-sky resolutions.

So, this year I thought I’d try to focus on what I’d like more of in my life – as a way of focusing on myself and on bringing a little joy back to my face.   I’ve already wished for what I want, but here’s a recap of what I’d like to focus on for 2012…

Beauty

Color

Luxury & Warmth

Fun

&

a little Sparkle

I think that focusing on bringing these things into my life (and acknowledging where they already are there) is a great intention for 2012.  What do you want to see for yourself in 2012?

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Cleaning Out My Closet

One of the things I’ve had on my to-do list was to reorganize my closet.  Eric and I share a closet and it is tiny.  And somehow during the winter months it sort of exploded and I’d never gotten it back under control.  So, one of my goals this month was to take care of this closet.  These are the before photos, just to give you an idea.  It wasn’t terrible, but it was making me crazy. 

Part of the problem was that a good portion of my sweaters were stacked up on top of my shoe rack.  Which sort of turned this spot into a catchall for clothes. 

And as I pull out shoes that are in shoe boxes, they kind of go back up on the shelf haphazardly.  The shoes on the floor tend to end up wherever I kick them off. 

So it was clear, something had to be done before I lost my mind.  The first thing I did was pick up another sweater box at The Container Store.  Then I made sure all of my sweaters were clean so that I could put them away for next year.  That one box made a huge difference in my closet. 

As you can see, I can now actually get to the shoes on the top of the shoe rack without having a huge pile of clothes there. 

And I took five minutes and restacked my shoe boxes on top of the shelf.  Now the box that’s missing its top is on the top of the stack, rather than somewhere in the middle which makes the whole stack wonky.  What a concept.  <— sarcasm

And the shoes on the floor have been relegated back to their boxes.  Hopefully they will stay that way. 

It’s amazing what a difference one box and less than an hour’s time makes.  My closet looks so much better, and it’s not making me lose my mind everytime I slide open that door. 

Now I can cross this off my to do list and move onto some other things I need to do around the house.  Eric and I must be nesting, because all of a sudden we keep thinking of projects that need to be done.  Speaking of which, thanks for the compliments on the Patio Project.  We are so pleased with how it turned out!  The next project for me is making a skirt for my craft table in an effort to hide all of my “stuff” underneath it.

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June Goals

Somehow May has zipped right past and June is already upon us.  So, I thought I’d better recap how I did with my May goals and take a look at what I can cross off my list. 

May 2011 Goals:

1. Fitness/Eating/Health
Continue with Saturday 3m walks  yes
Yoga twice a week  yes – almost every week
– Start doing menu planning nope – need to work on this one
Attend WW meetings yes – religiously
– Schedule eye appointment still need to do this

2. Work
– Get back on track with weekly status reports and time tracking almost caught up
Complete training on my replacement basically done

3. Home, Us, Etc.
Schedule donation pick up done and picked up
Read book for book club done
Filing in office done
– Make hair appointment nope
– Finish closet organization not yet
– Continue cleaning out storage unit need to go back for round 2

I also got several things done like getting a new watch battery, signing up for a class, doing some organizing around the house, etc.  And, as I mentioned, I’ve been working on paying attention to my eating habits. 

So what’s on the agenda for June?

1. Fitness/Eating/Health
– Continue with Saturday 3m walks
– Yoga twice a week
– Gym at least once a week, twice would be preferable
– Start doing menu planning
– Attend WW meetings
– Schedule eye appointment

2. Work
– Get back on track with weekly status reports and time tracking

3. Home, Us, Etc.
– Clean up media room
– Read book for July book club
– Scanning papers on desk
– Make hair appointment
– Finish closet organization
– Continue cleaning out storage unit
– Organize photos in Lightroom

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