Monday, December 31, 2012


As this year is winding down and 2013 is set to begin, I'm overwhelmed by a sense of having lots of starts and too few completions under my belt as of late. In fact, this blog is a perfect example of such. Not that this blog needs to be "completed," per se, but it should be ever-evolving, as should I. And yet, I began it with gusto over 16 months ago (I had no idea it had been that long ago until I casually logged in today) and haven't touched it since. Other examples: We moved in late August, and there are still boxes in closets that I keep saying I'll go through. There are mirrors and art that need to be hung. There are summer and winter clothes that need to be transitioned out/in. There are thank-you notes that I tell myself I'll write, and birthdays I plan to get ahead of. Gifts I plan to be more thoughtful in purchasing. Intentionality that I plan to have in my relationships. Books that I intend to start and/or finish. Exercise regimens I keep planning to kick-off. Heck, I don't even buy the Groupons I'm interested in. Unless it's related to work or basic things around the house (i.e., getting dinner on the table and making sure the house is clean enough that it doesn't embarrass me), it doesn't get done.

So, while in recent years I have shied away from making resolutions, this year my goal is to set goals (with actual benchmarks when appropriate). Ironically, it is my job to help organizations run better. I assess capacities and gaps and help others set goals to fill those gaps. I identify benchmarks for periodic checks toward meeting goals; and yet, in my personal life, I have a complete lack of goal-setting in place these days.

The only personal goals that I've really set over the past year are: 1) to get pregnant and 2) to be more deliberate about my disciplines towards attaining spiritual growth. And I'm not pregnant, and it's questionable as to whether I've grown spiritually. I'm generally good about having a devotion time each morning before work (I've actually been slacking on this too during the holidays), but it's more as a matter of routine than desire. And what I want to get back (or get!?!) in my life is passion. 
I want to be passionate about Christ. I want to passionate about my health. I want to be passionate about our financial future. I want to be passionate about being a good wife. I want to be passionate about being a good friend, sister, daughter, daughter-in-law, etc., I want to be passionate about trying new things. And if I would set more goals and complete more of the things I start, I think the passion will come. Here are some goals for 2013:
1) I want to grow spiritually. As part of that, I plan to set aside at least 15 consecutive minutes for nothing but prayer every day. I want this to happen at different times of the day - when I'm inspired to do so. But if I don't become inspired, this should happen no later than 15 minutes prior to going to sleep. I don't want this to become a routine. I want it to strike me, and to be drawn in my God to connect with Him. I will try journalling my prayers, to ensure I'm not just rambling with my eyes closed. Once a month, I will look back at my prayers and see which ones have been answered, etc.
2) I want to become healthier. As part of that, I plan to lose 50 pounds. The last time I weighed, I weighed right at 200 pounds. I shouldn't weigh 200 pounds. I'm not short, but I'm not THAT tall. At 5' 8.5" tall, it is completely reasonable for me to weigh 150 pounds. To lose 50 pounds by the end of 2013, I should have lost 25 pounds by July 1. To do this, I should lose an average of 4.17 pounds each month - approximately 1 pound per week. This is completely doable. In order for this to happen, I need to join the Y at the Bike Hub. I also need to purchase a new battery for our scale. I received a heart rate monitor for Christmas. I need to use that when I exercise. I need to start exercising at least five days a week for at least 30 minutes each day. I need to set up a journal to celebrate my success in meeting this goal. I will weigh once a week and log that in. I will not beat myself up for failure. I will just hold myself accountable to my goal. Healthy eating must also be part of this goal. I will focus on exercise first and revise my "diet" goals by March 15.
3) I want to be more well-read and also learn to enjoy times of leisure. As part of that, I plan to read at least 12 books by the end of the year. I say I am a slow reader. And honestly, I'm not the fastest reader on the planet. But mostly, I'm not a committed reader. To read 12 books, I will need to read at least one book per month. I would like for at least 1/3 of these books (4) to edify me spiritually in some way. Thus, once every four months, one of the four books I've read should be biblical in nature.
4) I could goal myself into the ground with things that I would like to be different about me. But I believe the noted three are a good start and will help me to become more "passionate" about life. I believe that the very first goal (to grow spiritually) will lend itself to accomplishing many other goals - being a better servant, a better wife, a better friend, etc. If I'm more committed to my relationship with Christ, I believe my other relationships will improve. Likewise, if I lose weight and become healthier (goal 2), I will feel like doing other things that bring me joy or bring my husband joy. And if I am able to focus on and really learn to enjoy leisure (goal 3), I shouldn't be as negative and will probably become more productive.
5) I do also want to commit to writing a blog at least 50 times in 2013. That is an average of just under once per week, but doesn't have to be done weekly. I just want to make sure I'm documenting the important things happening in our lives. So if I make three separate posts in one day, that's fine. I definitely don't want it to be a chore, but I also am committing to making sure it happens every month. So, if by November I've already blogged 50 times, I still need to blog in December. It's more that I need to be reflecting on my life regularly (and writing is one of the best ways for me to do that). Plus, it'll provide a place to retain memories that I'm far too good at forgetting. (Wish I could make "Get a better memory" a goal!)
6) I just generally want to love life more and make life for others better. And so, I will plan to follow through with things that I say I want to do. Because not setting goals has led to me not accomplishing desired outcomes, which I'm afraid has left me somewhat hollow, which makes me feel shallow, which I do not want to be. I want to be a deep reflecting pool - I want to reflect Christ and all that is good about him. And I recognize it is in looking back at what you said you wanted that you realize you became (or didn't become) who you wanted to be. I also recognize I will always be on a quest to be a different person than I am today. But this process and intentionality to be who I say I want to be will help me to ever-reflect and ever-change and ever-grow into the woman, child, friend, wife, sister, Christ-follower, etc., that I want and need to be.
Happy New Year!