2016: Striving for Better

I have to admit, I like resolutions, and I’m about 24 days late sharing what I came up with for this year. I consider them to be goals. Targets. In an effort to shed perfectionism and strive for “better,” I like to focus on ways I can make improvements in my writing, health, family life, etc.

I love revising my goals. I usually do this around my birthday (in February) and again at some point during the year (mid-year, or early fall). Goals are awesome. Goals are a work-in-progress. Goals are meant to be revised. They should reflect your growth and learning, trial and error. They aren’t set in stone. This (at least for me) required a shift in my thinking. I was always so fixed on being perfect. I could never be perfect. It stressed me out. One day I realized, after a lot of research and self-reflection, that I was doing it wrong. The goal isn’t to achieve perfection, which doesn’t exist. The goal was growth–to be better, a little bit at a time. Movement toward a goal. That’s it.

This year I wrote my goals as “intentions.” They’re goals. Whatever you want to call them, it doesn’t matter. What matters is that you understand these are targets for growth.

I printed copies and put them next to my desk, in my journal, and a copy in my backpack. I like looking at them all the time. I also keep a copy on my Google Drive.

I’ll share some with you:

  1. Write (5) first drafts this year.
  2. Finish revising 2 novels.
  3. Write daily. Write all the time. Find extra chunks of time to do even more writing.
  4. Work on marketing one of my novels.
  5. Exercise 5-6x/week.
  6. Eat mostly vegetarian (90% of the time).
  7. Read voraciously.
  8. Go on dates with my husband.
  9. Update family photo albums.
  10. Paint exterior of my house.
  11. Re-paint a room in my house.
  12. Build robots with my son.
  13. Teach my daughter her ABCs.
  14. Take each kid on one-on-one dates at least 2x/each this year.

General goals I have:

  1. publish work
  2. nurture my kids’ interests
  3. stay healthy
  4. promote literacy in my home
  5. practice gratitude
  6. have more patience
  7. make decisions without guilt
  8. keep strong boundaries
  9. be creative and innovative
  10. teach my kids new skills
  11. travel
  12. make our house comfy and happy
  13. less stress

One of the things I’m teaching my kids is that everything is a work-in-progress, and their responsibility is to keep learning, keep trying, keep making mistakes and figuring out ways to fix them and work toward improvement. We’re not born “perfect.” We can never achieve “perfect.” We can, however, strive for better.

What do you want to get better at?

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