Every year around this time for as long as I can remember, I begin writing down a very lengthy, detailed list of goals for the entire year. I make separate categories for the goals depending on what our family is doing during the upcoming year. This year, I have written four categories: personal, house, farm, and shop. Underneath the categories, I usually brainstorm for days on all of the areas I would like to make improvements in that category. For example, under the category “personal,” I currently have the following items listed (in no particular order!) on my brainstormed list:
- Drink more coffee throughout the day!! (Based on an article on Inc., it said four cups a day is a good amount! Research suggests it is good for your heart, it has anti-oxidants, and it helps your mood.)
- Read for 1-2 hours/day (fiction, Bible study, non-fiction)
- Write a blog 1x/week on either greenacresfarmandhome.com, greenacresadventure.com, or therustycoop.wordpress.com (Who tries to keep up with three different blogs! ;)
- Get J&K’s t-shirt quilt made (I paid for a t-shirt quilt coupon for both of them about FOUR years ago and never mailed it! What’s wrong with me?!)
- Take clothes to Goodwill 1x/month (A goal that needs to happen, but hardly happens regularly!)
- Participate in or lead a Bible Study with friends (I’ve done this multiple times and it is so important and rewarding!)
- Invite one person over 1x/every other week (It will not happen if you don’t make it a goal!)
- Call two family members or friends per week (#same as above! Actually list people you miss talking to or haven’t talked to in a long time!)
- Begin writing a book (That idea has been swirling around in my brain for years!! Is 2022 the year?!)
- Plan a trip to Kansas City, Missouri to stay in my cousin’s super cool Airbnb above their Brewery. (It is on Airbnb and is called Art Alley Attic. Please check it out!! It would be PERFECT for a Bachelorette Party or Bachelor Party!)
- Go to Branson, MO….possibly at the same time we go to Kansas City?
- **This last goal is something that may seem a little heavy to share, but I think it is important to let you all know that, even when you are 56 and retired, you still struggle with hard things!** Stop being ruled by unnecessary guilt in relationships. It is definitely true that God uses relationships to sharpen us as “iron sharpens iron” and it is also definitely not easy at times. It is impossible to be all things to all people. There are people who will simply never understand your perspective and will simply never be satisfied that you have tried your very best. It is frequently not about what you have or haven’t done, but it is rather about their false perception of the situation. They don’t have all of the facts ruling your decisions and you, most likely, don’t know all of the facts ruling their perspective of the situation. If you know you are doing your best, you are officially released from all guilt if your best doesn’t make them happy. You can only control your own actions and behavior. Not their reactions. You’re welcome. 😉 (I figure I will finally grasp this completely when I’m in my 80s! lol!)
What do I do with this list after it is written down for the year? I frequently revisit the list throughout the next year. I look at it regularly to see if I am making wise choices with my time and dedicating my time and attention to the goals I am trying to achieve. I avoid beating myself up if I don’t meet a goal. Instead, I analyze whether or not it should remain a goal and move that goal to the following year and try to complete it again. I do whatever I can to stay focused on the goals that were important enough to write down at the beginning of the year.
As you can see, some goals seem kind of silly. Like “drink more coffee’. That seems unimportant, but for me to take time to sit and enjoy a cup of coffee in the middle of the day is important for me because I need to remind myself it is okay. I can sit and drink coffee and relax a bit each day without guilt. I need the reminder because I have struggled with taking time for myself for years. I’m working on guilt-free indulgence this year.
One thing that I am celebrating in a HUGE way this year is marking an item off of my list that I have been transferring to my new list every year for over ten years!! “Open The Rusty Coop” has been written on my “Personal Goals” list for well over ten years and it actually feels surreal to not see it as one of the first items on my list again this year!! Praise God that He brought it all together for our family this year and enabled me to realize my dream!!
Well, My Friends, I hope to see you all at The Rusty Coop sometime in 2022!!! Until then, keep working on reaching your goals, stay warm and cozy, and have a Happy New Year!