Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Goal Setting: 19 for 2019

I've been listening to a podcast called Happier in the studio. It's all about small habits & practices that contribute to a happier life. Since I listen to several episodes at a time, so many ideas flying at me can get a little overwhelming, but there are valuable nuggets in there. One that came up a couple episodes ago was 19 in 2019, a list of 19 things you want to do in the new year. It was remarkably clarifying for me, as much for the things that didn't make the list as for the things that did. In considering the candidates, I had to weigh whether committing to doing this thing was realistic. and if not why not. Several of the things I'd like to do I left off the list - get the house painted, take a yoga class - after realizing that, though I might like to do those things, there are reasons why I haven't already. I haven't had the house painted because I don't have money for that. I haven't done it myself because there are more urgent/ important demands on my time. I don't take a yoga class because more committed blocks in my schedule make it harder to find days to fire. And so on. I had a feeling of releasing burdens by acknowledging that some things just are not going to happen, for legit reasons.

Here's my list, with the studio-related items highlighted. As you see, I was (so far!) only able to come up with 17. This is also a relief: there isn't really much about my life that I would like to change.

  1. Pedal 100 miles a week
  2. At least one canoe trip
  3. Finish the kitchen counter
  4. Learn how to felt soap
  5. Get credit card down 30%
  6. One social thing per month
  7. Studio work & firings on schedule
  8. Declutter hallway desk
  9. 20 hrs per week in the studio
  10. Use Instagram better for business
  11. Pour concrete front walkway
  12. 5 postcards to voters per month
  13. Almost-daily 2 minutes of yoga
  14. 1 blog post /wk
  15. Drink more water
  16. Increase online sales
    • Keep better track of inventory
  17. NCECA
  18. .

 A couple of these I feel funny, surely I shouldn't have to set a goal to get myself in the studio 20 hours a week! It's my vocation, and my calling, and more than that it's my freakin' job! Should that happen effortlessly? But when I looked at the other things in my schedule - teaching 6 classes, 6 hours of commuting a week, household stuff, helping out my elderly mom - I realized, no wonder I have a hard time finding enough time! Again, it was with a sense of laying a burden down: I'm not just lazy or disorganized or a fuck-up - I have a lot on my plate. So setting that goal no longer seems silly.

Anyway, as Gretchen Rubin says at the end of every Happier podcast: Onward & upward! Next thing to do is make a list of what I need to get these things accomplished.


smartcat said...

I like this idea because it seems more realistic than most. While 19 in 2019 has a nice ring to it. I think being realistic about goals is important too. Perhaps that should be a goal too?

Lori Watts said...

Yes, what I loved about this exercise was that I had to reflect: am I REALLY going to do that? Do I want to do without whatever I would have to sacrifice to make that thing, whatever it is, happen? Realizing that somethings don't happen because they are just not as important to me as other things was valuable.