Mark Twain

"Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do ...
Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Goal Setting and Soul Searching

This posting will be a bit dry so I thought a cheery picture would brighten it up a bit. So this is "A View from my Walk" picture - and it just proves that not all beauty and color in nature comes from flowers!

I am nearing the end of the first month of this 20 year journey, and plan to look back and see how things are going around September 1st - but how to do that! Six goals out of 20 are published and without some method of review, it is just a list!

Realistic goal setting for me has always been hard. Oh, yes, I can set goals easily and I love to set goals and make to-do lists, but I have the "eyes-are-bigger-than-my-stomach" syndrome - I set big goals and lots of them ... goals that usually aren't realistic in light of limited time. I am a Type A personality - I like to be the best, achieve the most, and control all the processes (i.e. do things without help and delegate almost never). I don't think these are positive traits anymore, but they have been part of me for as long as I can remember. As I have gotten older, I have given up some stupid stuff - my house isn't perfect and not always clean. I am not going for the slimmest body and I try very hard to not "lead" (having done that for a number of professional years.) But I do need sort through what can be tracked and what will be assumed.

Let's start with the easy ones!

Walking - this is pretty simple. Use a pedometer and improve the daily average steps each month. The starting goal is 10,000 steps average. That should work for awhile - until the daily step totals average 15,000 steps (or whatever number seems like a stretch). Then it is just a matter of keeping it up. Wa-la!! That was easy! I am doing great, don't you think? :-) (I think Type A's like to hear that they are doing well - so yes, I am fishing for compliments.)

Tai Chi and Stretching - this is pretty simple, too. Count the time and improve it each month. And this month, I did such a lousy job of keeping up with Tai Chi and I did no stretching. It won't be hard to do better next month. I would assume that these 2 would also reach a certain plateau, just like walking, and then just maintaining. I'll still need to figure out where that plateau is. (Type A's like to set themselves up for success - so I did bad this month so I can do better next month - yes, that works for me.)

Keep Learning - now things are getting harder. I have enthusiastically invited 3 things into my life this month that weren't there last month. So maybe if I blog about what I have done with these things for this year, maybe 3 times a month, I will at least show continuity. The downside is that I've invited 3 things in this month, but done nothing with them. More thinking, more thinking.

Photo Family History - this is a long term, episodic goal. Over the last few years I have worked on this project during a September beach week. Beach week is when my kids and my sister's family go to the Outer Banks. I used to go on this trip, but mom can't make it comfortably, doesn't really want to go anymore and my husband doesn't drive so I don't feel comfortable leaving them behind without back up when I would be 6 hours away. So if I work on this project once a year during beach week, it counts.

Friendships and Family - these are not objective elements. And up to now, they have been part of my life like breathing. I see family several times a week and friends socially every week, and email others. My blogging should be evidence of my commitment. I think these can be assumed to be valued at a high level already.

So, the initial sort of where I am going and how I will assess my progress is done for now. I will be back around September 1 to look at this again. I can tell you right now - I have earned an F in some of this! Type A's don't get F's ... maybe I can consider this a "growth" opportunity as I force myself to relax into a Type B personality.

No ... I am still a Type A. An "F" can't be translated into a "growth opportunity" no matter how you look at it!


  1. We Type A's can be awfully hard on ourselves, don't ever forget that! Will email tomorrow. S

  2. You are doing well! :-)
    I'm looking forward to the competition that starts on Wednesday on walker tracker.


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