More Thoughts and Plans for 2011

After I thought about my word and my plans for 2011, I began to think more and more about what the word and the priorities meant. The end of the year is always a contemplative time for me. Likely it’s because I have a larger chunk of free time than usual and each year feels a bit like beginning a new notebook so I try to use the occasion to think and look forward and plan. I’ve learned that planning is tremendously effective. This is very long and mostly for my benefit (I like having a record of my plans and my thoughts) so feel free to skip. I won’t be offended.

About a week ago or so, I was reading Chris’s annual review article. I’ve read this before and have always liked the idea. I’m a technical person at heart and all these specific goals, measurable steps, etc. are right up my alley. Since I have my list of 9 priorities this year, I thought it would be a good exercise to see if I could come up with 3-5 goals for each.

So here we go:

Goals for Each Priority

1. Read and do workbooks with David daily (Project A Book A Week with David).
2. Take photo of full-family and write updates weekly (Project Us Right Now).
3. Write a daily diary of us + gratitude (Project Daily Diary)
4. Start a family night where we all play games or watch movies together (Scheduled for Sunday nights 6pm)
5. Sign up for a mommy/me class with Nathaniel (this still needs to be scheduled)
6. Schedule minimum bimonthly date nights with Jake

Health (Project Healthy For Life)
1. Do a combination of walking and running daily, work your way up to 5K a day
2. Complete the 100 pushups schedule
3. Do strength exercises 3x a week
4. Track exercise+food+sleep+water using the fitbit
5. Get minimum 7hours of sleep every night and 8 on the weekends
6. Eat at least one serving of vegetables daily and chicken/fish 3 times a week
7. Walk at least 8500 steps a day and work your way up to 10,000
8. Walk/Run a 10K
9. I also want to work on the coffee+graham crackers intake but not sure of the plan here yet.

I don’t share much about work on my blog and I won’t here either but I promise you I have 5 specific goals for work for 2011.

Art + Photography
1. Draw and paint a portrait six days a week (Project Six Portraits a Week)
2. Art journal weekly (Project Weekly Art Journal)
3. Sketch something small daily (15-30mins)
4. Go on a Monthly photo excursion alone or with a photo buddy
5. Write weekly extended photo articles on my blog
6. Figure out for once an all if I want an etsy shop and what will go in it

1. Create one layout a week just for me
2. Do monthly The Girls’ Paperie layouts
3. Do monthly Pink Paislee layouts
4. Do monthly Creative Therapy layout
5. Do monthly Write.Click.Scrapbook layout + write one more week during 2011
6. Successfully teach all four scheduled 2011 classes at Big Picture Classes and the one I am a part of in Masterful Scrapbook Design
7. Aim to do 5-6 guest design spots or classes (that I teach) this year
8. Submit to one magazine a month (maybe, I can’t decide if I want to do this just yet.)

1. Read a book a week (Project A Book a Week)
2. Read one book with David each week (Project A Book a Week with David)
3. Regularly attend both book clubs

1. Write at least one long thought/idea oriented blog post a week
2. Write one new class (if you have requests, please share)
3. Write one downloadable pdf for my site or etsy (if you have requests, please share)
4. Write+email a newsletter each month
5. Possibly do NaNoWriMo (not sure of this one…)

1. Learn to draw and paint portraits (Project Six Portraits a Week)
2. Take 5-6 online classes this year (already signed up for one with: Misty, Stephanie, Ali, and Melody so maybe I should aim for more)
3. Learn to write an iPhone/iPad application (sort of out there but achievable – let me know if you have an app you want)
4. Learn how to make a stop-motion movie
(more coming here)

Community (This is a particularly hard one for me.)
1. Reach out to people I admire more often (leave more comments/send emails)
2. Invite one book club member out to breakfast/lunch once a month
3. Go out to breakfast/lunch once a week (to work or elsewhere)
4. Ask one of the moms in David’s class out to lunch/coffee once a month
5. Do a weekly-open house for Nathaniel’s moms group
6. Invite guests over for dinner at least once a month
7. Stretch: Do a get-together or attend one

There we go. As more creep up over the year, I will likely come here and add/alter as needed.

Schedule for Blog

I’ve also come up with a schedule for my blog for 2011:
Mondays – Weekly Layout
Tuesdays – Art Journal Weekly
Wednesdays – A Book a Week, The Girls’ Paperie
Thursdays – Six Portraits a Week
Fridays – Healthy for Life, Pink Paislee
Saturdays – Us Right Now
Sundays – A Book a Week with David
And then there is Daily Diary and Monthy WCS layout and monthly Creative Therapy
I will also likely do Monthly Digital Downloads
And finally not directly on my blog but I will be doing the monthly newsletter which will also have digital downloads

Thoughts to Cultivate

There are some major focus areas I want to have throughout the year. Things that I want to come back to again and again. These will likely show up in my art journals but I also want to have them here for reference.

1. Let go of worry This is definitely the biggest issue for me. I worry constantly and I worry about the smallest things as well as the big ones. Even though I know worry is a wasted emotion I still can’t help myself. I want to work on this very actively during 2011. I’ve already talked to my husband and asked him to do some very specific things to help me. I’ve also decided to keep a god box. I want to be very mindful about what and who makes me worry more and create tangible solutions to each.

2. Slow down and be mindful I tend to be an over-achiever which is great but because I am so task-oriented and accomplishment-focused, I often rush through things. I am focused on the end and I don’t enjoy the journey. I don’t slow down. I don’t take my time, explore, learn, grow as much as I could. So my plan this year is to slow down considerably. Take my time drawing. Take my time reading and thinking. If some things don’t get done, that’s ok. I think that much more growth happens when we slow down and approach things mindfully.

3. Do not yell This one is self-explanatory. I absolutely hate hearing other people yell. And yet I do it more often than I’d like. This year, it’s a non-negotiable. It will not happen. It’s not a 5-10% thing. It’s all or nothing and the goal is nothing. People I love deserve my respect.

4. Be patient This one sort of goes along with 2 and 3. I need to practice more patience. I don’t need to rush through everything. I have young children. They are good good children. They are kind and generous and sweet. They deserve my patience. So does my husband. And me, too, I deserve being patient with myself.

5. Assume the best This sort of goes with number one. I tend to go to the worst possible outcome. Out of 1000 good comments I will remember the one negative one. I seek the criticism. I assume the person hates me, is mad at me, doesn’t want to talk to me, etc. etc. I assume people do not want me around. I assume I am doing a bad job and secretly people just don’t tell me. I have these amazingly negative theories about what others think/feel/do about me. It’s quite phenomenal and deeply damaging. And this year I want to turn this around. I want to be enough. I want to assume the best. I want to accentuate the positive. I’ve learned that if you repeat something enough to yourself and others, people start believing you. If you ask what’s wrong enough times, people start noticing things. You call negative energy and attention to yourself. I want to do the opposite. There’s so much good in my life and I want to bask in the glory of it. I want to always assume the best and remember and be grateful for the good.

6. Embrace joy I wrote about choosing joy before. This seems similar to 5 but it’s even bigger. Assuming is after something happens. Embracing is before. I want to seek joy. I want to quit worrying and embrace life and joy and bring forth good things in my life. Joy again and again. This would be so magical if I could do this. Just the idea makes me feel good.

7. Be comfortable in your skin Another big one for me. I have so many issues about who I am and how I look. But I think it’s time to start letting go of that and being free of my misconceptions. I want to get in the picture more so I can make peace with how I look. So I can see myself the way people who love me do. I want to get a new wardrobe, a new haircut, take care of myself a bit more. Not because I am not beautiful just the way I am but because my body deserves to be treated well. With kindness and compassion and it deserves more attention. Only the things you give attention to flourish. I’ve always had the notion that I am boring. I don’t drink or smoke or do drugs. I don’t dance. I don’t enjoy things that are often considered “fun.” But I love deeply. I am loyal and kind and helpful. I am resourceful. I am authentic. I am honest. This is me and instead of yearning to be something else, it’s time to love, accept, be grateful for who I am. I am deserving of friendship and love. And if I don’t believe that how can I expect others to?

8. Don’t criticize, work hard, do your best, let go Simple, obvious but often hard-to-do. This year, I want to focus on giving it all I have and then letting go. Just waking up, doing my best every day and then letting it all go when I lie down to sleep. Each day is a new chance. A do over. Another opportunity to get it right. So it’s best to let go each night and give myself the very best chance to get it right the next day.

And there we are. I am sure more will come up. But these are some of what’s on my mind.

Here’s to hoping 2011 is fantastic for all of us!

13 comments to More Thoughts and Plans for 2011

  • Nikki

    Like you I feel New year is a time to begin anew….for me I always start the new year coming up with new menu plans….anyway I digress, I was looking for menu planner templates online and came across this

    it seems to fit with where you are thinking – if like me you are a list person I thought it might help. Sorry if I am overstepping the mark, please feel free to point it out if I am.

  • Hester

    I really liked it to read your list. i wish i was a bit more organised.I think i would already love it if i would achieve half of the goals. I love the way you go for it and will come back to read how it goes. happy new year to you.

  • Melissa Martinez

    Are we related? I am seriously in the same boat as you I could totally cut and paste your list and feel as if it was written by me! The worry and stress of life are catching up with me and making me physically and mentally sick. But reading your post lets me know there are simple things I can do to change the way I feel and the way I act towards myself and others. Thank you for sharing this! It has given me a positive place to start in my own life.

  • Wow, just reading your goals makes me feel exhausted! You’re clearly a highly motivated person, I wish I was. Be super proud of yourself if you achieve even a quarter of this!

    I also just wanted to let you know that you have inspired me throughout the last few months, since I first found your blog, and I have decided to keep a gratitude journal for 2011. I started having hypnotheraphy in August, and as well as supporting weight loss, it gave me the ability to relax and be at peace. It has helped me to release a lot of the stress I carry around, realise how lucky I am, and I want to record that joy!

    Thanks for being your creative self!


  • Such a great post Karen! I’m really looking forward to your posts and newsletter in 2011. An idea for a class could be your sewing technique. I find that your sewing on your layouts to be very unique and I just love it. One of my goals this year is to learn to sew on layouts. Thanks for sharing this post, looks like you’re starting 2011 off in a great way, I hope it continues for you!

  • I’m with Laura…..I feel exhausted by your list!!
    But you are such a motivated gal I’m sure you will have great success in achieving your goals. All the best for 2011

  • Lorna

    Wow! You’ve obviously given a lot of thought to what you want to achieve in 2011. Good for you! I am in awe of your organisation and schedule!

  • good luck with your goals. I look forward to watching your journey unfold.

  • Janie

    Thanks you so much for this post. Very inspiring. Good luck with your goals and I hope you accomplish them. Wishing you all the best in 2011.

  • Thanks for your thoughts! I thoroughly enjoyed reading through your plans. You need to visit: – a awarded / international photographer. Great stuff!

  • Donna C

    Wow – your list was very inspiring! I didn’t make one this year at all – however I did take Aby Garvey’s goal setting course last year, and I think I will do it again.

  • Deb

    This is a fabulous list, thanks for sharing. Once I started reading about how how you worry, think the worst, etc I felt like you could have been writing about me! Good luck with all your goals.

  • tara pollard pakosta

    you are a true inspiration!
    I love your blog and am so happy to be reading it!

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