It's the first weekend of January. The weather is cold, but sunny. We might see some white stuff this week--not a ton of it. Honestly, all I want to do right now is sit in my house and write, read, and blog. The real world and my wallet say other plans need to be part of the agenda.
If you've followed me long enough, you know I set goals every year. Sometimes I achieve them and sometimes I don't. I never beat myself up, but I'm sick and tired of the pattern. In addition, I'm experiencing some health challenges I'm not comfortable with and need to focus on my well-being. So, this is my year of working intentionally toward changing habits. Baby steps and discipline are key. As such, I bought two magazines this year to help me.
Now, if I had picked up the first one before today, I would have seen that I was supposed to start the first week of December. Whoops! That said, I've read the introductory articles and will move forward starting with the first week of January.
Because the planner I had last year required a lot of effort, as soon as real estate got hectic it went by the wayside. I've totally given up on time blocking, which was one of my goals in 2019. Do I need more discipline in how I spend my time? Yes. Will I even manage baby steps if it feels like a tooth extraction? No. That's why this planner may work better. I'll track activities, write a to-do list (which I do anyway), chart my moods, and journal.
What caught my eye about the Prevention® magazine is the "Transform Your Sleep!" headline. I've never required a ton of sleep, but menopause and stress and, now, my ringing ears have interrupted the sleep I get. The CPAP machine required for mild sleep apnea has helped. As long as the seals are good and the fit comfortable, I often get five hours of uninterrupted sleep. The tinnitus I'm now experiencing has created obstacles, but a set of wireless headphones and some calming music help a bit.
Other articles cover bad habits, weight-loss plans, best hobbies for your mind and body, and habits to make time for. I'm in the middle of reading them now.
Here are my personal goals for 2020:
- Exercise twice a week. This simply isn't an option anymore. I'm seeing the effects of sitting in the car or at my desk for long periods. My joints are achy and I'm not as strong as I used to be. In order to accomplish this goal, there are two things that must happen: commit to going to bed by 11 pm and waking up at 6 am. I also need to not schedule early appointments on the two days I dedicate to exercising.
- Read the Bible daily. I've seen how much better my moods are when I spend time in the Word. If I can't spare even 5 or 10 minutes a day, then my focus is messed up.
- Dedicate one day a week to meal planning. This one is harder since I usually work both days out of the weekend and we take my father-in-law out to dinner one weekend evening too. Mondays are no good because they are the beginning of the week, so I'm usually slammed. Maybe it is Tuesday or Friday. I signed up for Imperfect Foods to get more fruits and vegetables in the house. I'm hoping the variety is good.
- Make smarter food choices. I'm a junk food junkie at heart. I know it. At 15 it was easier to counteract my choices than it is at 51. Even though I can't commit to the 21 Day Fix because the level of exercise is too tough on my joints, I am going to use the containers to make better food choices. I track my calories via the Lose it! app so I can at least know where I am falling down. Meal planning should help.
- Re-assess my commitments. I'm overwhelmed and overbooked. I did it to myself. I knew it. Saying no is tough. I currently sit on the board of three non-profits (as an officer for two), I'm moving up in leadership in the local REALTOR® association, and my family commitments are huge considering the four of us and my in-laws. Something has to give.
Now, my professional goals for 2020:
- Put together a solid business plan. My annual business plan kept me focused all these years. It allowed me to be a top-producer from the start. This is the first time a year came to a close without a business plan in place. I wasn't feeling it, which is silly. My business plan is the first thing I need to iron out, so Wednesday morning that is my focus.
- Commit to weekly prospecting. This is why I tried time blocking last year. Prospecting is an important part of any sales business; otherwise, you have barren times when you're struggling to make ends meet. I have a CRM, but its one of the first things to go out the window when my schedule gets hectic. Instead of time blocking, perhaps holding one day aside to work in the office or at home prospecting is a better plan. Baby steps.
- Read two business or leadership books this year. I planned to read four last year and ended up reading five. This year, I want more flexibility with what I am reading for career and pleasure. I want to pick up a book simply because I want to read it, not because I've been asked to review it or have some goal I need to reach. That said, two carefully selected books in this genre will be good for me.
- Re-assess my commitments. See personal goals. This is the year I learn to say no for the sake of my health and my sanity.
- Take my Broker's Test. I took the Broker's course in October. Now, I need to finalize what needs to be done and make time to take the test.
- Make an important decision by January 10. I can't say more about it, but it's a decision I've needed to make for a long time.
Here's to making 2020 a great year. I hope you'll share your goals as well.