How is it halfway through September already? It honestly feels as if I’ve blinked and we’re most of the way through the year. In light of that, I thought that it be worthwhile to consider the goals that I would like to focus on achieving throughout the rest of the year. And while September marks the start of a new school year for much of the world (although not in Australia) and a fresh start academically, it seemed fitting that with the Spring season, I look at having a “fresh start” by making some goals and keeping myself challenged for the remainder of 2015.
I know that I have had an absence lately with keeping the blog updated. What with a computer that seemed intent on not wanting to do anything without constantly freezing, going on my first overseas holiday and then battling a long two weeks of jet lag, it’s safe to say that the ideas and ability to write them down, weren’t happening. With all of that out of the way though, it’s time for a comeback. I enjoy coming up with new ideas and writing (whether they always work out is another matter), but my goal is to update the blog three time each week.
At the beginning of the year, I set myself the goal of reading 50 books in 2015. At this point in the year, I have finished reading 32 books. While I think this is a pretty good effort so far, I do however suffer from the eternal problem of constantly having a To Be Read List that seems to grow in number every day. If interested, you can find my TBR list here and see for yourself the mammoth number of books that I own (physical books or e-book copies) and haven’t yet managed to read. And while I think it is positive that I am a reader of many different genres and there are so many books that interest me, I really feel that I need to start working my way through the books that I do own and try to stop buying books to add to the list in the meantime. So, my aim for the rest of the year is to make my way through some of the books that I do own. I currently have a massive stack of books that I cannot fit onto my bookshelf, so have taken up residence in the wardrobe of the spare bedroom (see the photos below). There are a few books in there that I have read before, but have only recently purchased, but the majority are ones that I have not. I am going to start my reading challenge with these stack of books and see how many I can make it through before the end of the year. If you have read any of them before, where do you think that I should start?
Earlier in the year, I wrote about how much I enjoy knitting and the projects that I had currently been working on. I have still been knitting every day, usually when I watch something on tv, as it is a good way to keep my hands busy. While I am really happy with the progress I have been making, there’s always more that I can do to ensure that I keep working on projects enough so that they can be finished. Similar to my goal of trying not to buy any more books for awhile, my goals with knitting are to finish some of the blankets I am working on by the end of the year AND do so without buying any more yarn. It is (just like with books) very easy to loose track of how much yarn you already own, but with recent house re-organisation and de-cluttering, I re-discovered that I do have a pretty decent yarn stash. So now I am going to have to work out some way of avoiding both bookshops and yarn stores for the foreseeable future. If that’s not a challenge, I’m not sure what is (but maybe that means I will have more time to spend on the actual reading and knitting of projects?)!
Continue the de-cluttering
I have spent time over the past few weeks de-cluttering parts of my house and it gave me an opportunity to re-assess some of the belongings that I have accumulated. When you are somebody who loves reading, knitting and stationery as much as I do, it’s pretty hard not to have lots of those items. I always used to find tasks like this difficult to do. Not only because there would be times when I would come across an item that I had forgotten about, meaning that tidying up would become sidelined by reminiscing about said item. Plus, I’m not sure if it’s just me, but I’ve always struggled with the idea of discarding my belongings. There’s always a memory or a reason for keeping something and the idea of no longer wanting that, isn’t always an easy decision to make. So yes, in other words, I can be a bit of a hoarder. I don’t try to be, but it just happens. I found that sorting my belongings into keep, discard or donate piles was so much easier to do than it ever has been before. And that made it so much nicer to then rearrange everything, step back and give myself credit for a job well done. I haven’t completely finished this task yet. I aim to slowly go through all of the belongings in the house and re-assessing what I actually have in my cupboards and whether it needs to be there. Doing one cupboard a day has helped make this less overwhelming than I thought it would be and no doubt, more successful. In terms of a time frame, this is a job that will be completed by the end of the year.
Health & Fitness
No matter how healthy you are, I think that there’s always room for improvement. I don’t think that I am completely unhealthy, but recently there was a period of time where I was sticking to unhealthier patterns of behaviour, both food and exercise related. I am therefore aiming to work harder both with respect to the types and amount of food that I am consuming, but to also balance that with more exercise. I didn’t eat terribly when I was away on holidays, but it was also easier to choose somewhat unhealthier meals than I usually would. I have been putting in more of an effort of planning the entire week’s worth of meals before doing the grocery shop, so that the only food I should be eating for the week is already in the house. By doing that, it’s much easier to avoid buying unnecessary items that I don’t actually need and saves me from popping down to the corner shop when I realise I don’t have a particular item I need. Continuing to plan meals will ensure that I can only eat healthier meals and I don’t think that that could be a bad thing. I used to do yoga many years ago and I really enjoyed it. Before I went on holidays I started yoga again, but have managed to get out of the habit of doing it since I have been back. So I am starting to practice again and with Spring weather making it much nicer to spend time outside, there’s less excuses for me to use to avoid going outside for additional exercise.
I realise now, that I have set out quite a few goals for myself and it could be a challenge to try and achieve all of this by the end of the year. However, I don’t think that I’ve set myself too many goals all in one area of my life. I would like to think that rather than these goals being a chore, it’s the chance for me to use them to become a happier person. Maybe I should call this The Happier Me Challenge? An attempt to spend everyday being a healthier, happier, more positive person. If that’s not a positive way to try and spend the rest of the year, then I don’t know what is.
Are there any goals or challenges that you are setting yourself to complete by the end of the year?