Less Thinking More Doing!

It frustrates me to not be updating here more, and not have the time to think and plan for next year’s goals that I would like to have. There is still plenty of time, of course, but so many thoughts build up each week about both next year and what I’m doing now, that I wish I had just a little bit more time. Our alarm goes off at 5am and more than once this week I’ve wished myself into waking up at 4, just so I’d have a little bit of extra quiet time to myself. Not even vaguely productive at that time of the morning, naturally! I end up stumbling around, wasting time and making myself tired for the day at work so it’s probably not the best idea. I just wish I could have things clear in my head and keep them that way!

I am clear on what I’m supposed to be doing, though. It takes a lot of little actions to live the life I’ve been dreaming of and there’s a lot, too much really, to pack into each day. My daily actions for December look something like this:

HEALTH:

  • Stretches (straight after waking up, preferably although it tends to be later at weekends ;))
  • Strength training (straight after stretches ,or before a workout, 5 days out of 7)
  • Cardio (5 days out of 7)
  • Meal plan for carbless lunches & dinners (daily)
  • Bulk cooking once or twice a week to make lunches for work (2 out of 7)
  • Daily post to weightloss blog on stream-of-consciousness type stuff

HOME:

  • Cleaning: 10 tasks (including laundry ;)) target is daily but reality is probably 4 out of 7
  • Snagging list to address random tasks
  • Long-term Clear-out

MUSIC

  • Piano practice
  • Song practice
  • Vocal Warmups
  • (various breakdowns within these categories)
  • Target is 2 hours a day on average

LANGUAGES

  • 1 set of kanji testing
  • Kanji practice
  • German reading (5 pages on workdays)
  • Russian vocab (1 train journey on workdays)

FRIENDS & FAMILY

  • Write two Christmas cards
  • Social stuff/arrangements
  • Sort out one thing towards presents or Christmas hosting

OTHERS

  • Blog post
  • Creative time (usually just once a week but it’s on the list anyway!)
  • Web presence sort-out
  • Planning for 2013

 

That’s quite a list… and my 2013 goals list is looking similarly crammed at the moment too, so I kind of need to get used to working this way and keeping on top of things.

Sometimes I look at the list and despair 😉 although I accept that not everything will get done every day. I have to learn to prioritise so the definite sine qua non type stuff (in bold) comes first.

The things that come next are not always the highest priority but often, oddly, the things that are most obvious or clearly delineated – these tasks are easier to reach for. Things like cleaning, kanji, items where there is a limited amount of work and it’s clear when they’re completed – those tend to get attended to next because it feels good to do them (I’ve underlined these).

There’s a good lesson here about goal-setting and making things explicit. “Do as much music as possible” does not work in this situation because it gets pushed aside for something more concrete. So I need to rephrase some of these goals and approach them in a more detailed way for next year.

Once I get to about ¾ done on any given day, I start to feel really good. If there’s one thing I’ve learned this year, it’s that whatever mood I wake up in, if my list is reflective of what I want out of life and I stick to the list, I will go to bed happy. If I’m happily occupied, I can’t get down – and although having a list might feel like a chore, all the things on it are things I enjoy and get fulfilment from so I’m usually pretty happy once I start.

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