Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Goal Check...Seven Months Gone...

Some of you may know that every once in a while I like to reflect on my goals (or intentions) throughout the year. Resolutions are easy to make but hard to stick to and earlier this year I noticed people making a conscious effort to move away from making (or calling them) resolutions. I don't know if this is supposed to be a way of being nicer to one's self by not adding the pressure of a "promise to fulfill" or something to live up or setting one's self up for failure since many resolutions do fail but I guess I am stuck in my I still set goals and make resolutions.

The main goals I wrote about on Dec. 31, 2011 were to live more simply (decluttering), paying off all debt and working on reducing my carbon footprint. Here's where I stand seven months later:

1- Simplify. Back in March the hubby and I moved out of our house and into a 32 foot RV...permanently. We held several yard sales, netting a few thousand dollars, and donated the rest of our clothing and household items to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. We each have 5 {very} small dresser drawers and about 18" of closet space for all of our clothes. Storage is extremely limited so a side benefit is that we have not been able to make many purchases without having to get rid of something else to make room. It has been liberating (except when we get invited out and I feel like I have nothing to wear...and this time it's true).

2- Pay off all debt. Almost done with this one! With reduced expenses like no huge mortgage or utilities, not shopping as a hobby, cutting out all subscriptions (living on the road means cutting back on mail delivery), switching to a Virgin Mobile cell phone(pay as you go) and no big vacations we've been able to pay off a significant portion of our debt. Granted our original debt was just a few credit cards...both of our vehicles are paid off (and older models)...but it feels good watching the balances go down each month.

3-Continue to reduce my carbon foot-print. I'm proud to say that I remember my reusable grocery bags 99% of the husband (a pretend non-greenie) reminds me 0.5% and the other .05% we both forget and end up with a bunch of bags great for cleaning the litter box. Oh, and we've practically eliminated the use of bottled water opting for our Pur Water Pitcher and reusable bottles.

In addition to "the bags", I now make my own household cleaners, air freshener, carpet deodorizer, facial cleanser and moisturizer. I will be using this 'recipe' for laundry detergent just as soon as I use up what I already have. I have gone back to a glycerin based shampoo and deep conditioner but now only wash my hair maybe 2 or 3 times a week.

My other intentions for the year included climbing Mt. Shasta, which doesn't look like it will happen. With all of the changes going on it just wasn't working out. As far as meditation...well, that's something I am working on and hope to really put some effort into now that I'm reading Start Where You Are: A Guide to Compassionate Living by Pema Chodron for a book club on Elephant Journal.

Speaking of Elephant Journal...I finally did it. I submitted a short story and actually got it published on their wonderful site!! It was terrifying and exhilarating. I wrote about my father and was able to include a few excerpts from his writing as well. I am even more inspired now to continue writing and maybe even submit future stories. The most important thing is that I was able to include my dad's writing, which I really want to continue in the future.
As far as my not focus on weight-loss...well, I'd have to say I've been fairly successful. When I made this declaration in no way did I intended it to mean I would start eating donuts and ice cream and disregard my health. I still eat very well and, since I'm training for a full marathon in September, I am still exercising and running almost every day. But, I'm not freaking out about calories, I'm not weighing myself, I'm not skipping meals or chastising myself for eating a handful of chips (and paying a penance later). And guess what??? My clothes fit better and I feel more relaxed.

With just five more months left in the year (and two months until we hit the road) we will continue to simplfy and declutter to lighten up the load (and gas needs) in the RV. Once I completely (for as long as I can that is) stop working I will be launching our Full-time RV travel blog and writing every day (blog posts or articles/stories to submit or just for the sake of writing).

For those of you who made resolutions/intentions or set goals (or whatever you call them) how has your year been so far?

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