More Thoughts and Plans for 2012

Like last year, after I thought about my word and my plans for 2012, I began to think more and more about what the word and the priorities meant. Since I tend to be self-reflective during this time of year, 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.

By the way, this is influenced by 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 to David daily with a focus on longer, more involved books. (We will incorporate these into David’s Book of Good Memories)
2. Take photo of full-family and write updates weekly (Project Weekly Diary).
3. Write a weekly diary of us and daily gratitudes for me and David (Project Weekly Diary) and the gratitudes are on the left column of the blog.
4. Continue our family night where we all play games or watch movies together (Scheduled for Sunday nights)
5. Create letter-focused spreads and art with Nathaniel each week (Project Letters with Nathaniel)
6. Create at least one crafty spread a week with David about things that made him happy that week (Project David’s Book of Good Memories.)
7. Volunteer in both David and Nathaniel’s schools at least twice each semester. (I know this doesn’t seem like a lot but it’s the minimum I hope to do.)
8. Schedule minimum bimonthly date nights with Jake

Health (Project Healthy For Life)
1. Continue running daily, work your way up to 5K a day
2. Find a trainer so I can add basic weight-training and strength exercises weekly
3. Track the food I eat each day. (not fun!)
4. Continue using the fitbit daily with a goal of 10,000 steps a day
5. Get minimum 7hours of sleep every night and 8 on the weekends
6. Eat at least one serving of vegetables and protein daily
7. Start a meditation practice

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 2012.

1. Sketch minimum four times a week (Project Weekly Sketching)
2. Art journal weekly using hand-lettering at least half the time (Project Weekly Art Journal)
3. Take at least three art classes
4. Experiment with at least three mediums
5. Try sketching using different sizes. (Really big+really small)
6. Focus on and hone one specific sketch style. (or two or three!)
7. Experiment with collage once a week (Project Journey into Collage)

1. Continue to create for my design teams (Maya Road, My Mind’s Eye, Write.Click.Scrapbook)
2. Create at least four pages (2-spreads) in my book (The Savor Project)
3. Design a class around different ways of storytelling
4. Aim to do 1-2 guest design spots or classes (that I teach) this year

1. Read a book a week (Project A Book a Week)
2. Read daily to David (longer, more involved books) (Project Reading with David)
3. Regularly attend both book clubs

1. Write at least three long thought/idea oriented blog posts a week
2. Journal five days a week
3. Take at least two self-reflection-focused classes this year (already signed up for Body Restoration)
4. Do the exercises in A Minute for Me, daily

1. Take two classes locally
2. Take four online classes this year
3. Learn to drive on the freeway
4. Learn to ride a bike
5. Learn to collage

Community (This is a particularly hard one for me.)
1. Go out to breakfast/lunch once a week
2. Invite guests over for dinner at least once a month
3. Extend an invitation to someone new once a week
4. Leave comments on blogs I read once a week
5. Respond to comments on my blog + return emails within 48 hours

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 tentative schedule for my blog for 2012:
Mondays – Weekly Layout
Tuesdays – Weekly Sketching
Wednesdays – A Book a Week + The Savor Project
Thursdays – Weekly Art Journal
Fridays – Journey into Collage
Saturdays – Weekly Diary
Sundays – David’s Book of Good Memories(including Reading with David) and Letters with Nathaniel (we will alternate this each week)

I will also aim to post self-reflection/thought posts four nights a week. Likely Monday through Thursday.

And I haven’t decided whether I will continue the monthly newsletter or not just yet.

Thoughts to Cultivate

Last year, I created major focus areas I wanted to have throughout the year. Things that I want to come back to again and again. Some of these I will repeat for this year since I still would like to keep them forefront on my mind. And others are new for this year. These will likely show up in my art journals + self-reflection 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 continue work on this very actively during 2012. I didn’t keep a god box last year but I plan to start on it this year. I also want to create worry lists from week to week (I mention the idea in number seven of this post.). 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 aware 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. Since my word for this year is savor, this is something I plan to pay extra-attention to. One change I made from last year was to aim to reduce some of my daily tasks. My goal is to do 4 sketches a week and 4 art journal pages a week instead of doing 7 of each. This way I get a few days off and if I want to I can complete a sketch over two days.

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. (This is word for word from last year. I wish I could say I adhered to it. But, no. So for 2012, I want to be more resolute. Stronger. Kinder. Quieter.)

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. This, too, aligns perfectly with the savor theme.

5. Embrace joy I wrote about choosing joy before. Savoring is all about seeking the marrow of life. 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. Reach out I want to focus on building community more this year. Not necessarily a big one but one that makes me feel more a part of something bigger. I want my kids to grow and cultivate friendships and I want to set an example by doing the same. I am often too lazy or scared to do it. Time to let that go. This also means taking more trips, traveling, and in general getting out of the house more.

8. Be brave and self-compassionate I want to be braver this year. Try new things. Take chances. In all areas of my life. With art, with reaching out, with work, with daily life. And I can only do that if I practice more self-compassion. I want to be an example to my kids that we practice courage regularly. It’s not inherent. I want to show that sometimes we fail but we get up and try again. I want to move away completely from anything that encourages shame-words. I want to practice kindness and patience with myself. I want to show that failure is a part of life and so is showing compassion to oneself.

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 2012 is fantastic for all of us!

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