Monday, December 13, 2010

Reflecting on 2010

The year's not quite over, but this year I hope to have my goals and financial plans together by the 1st, so I'm starting with a recap of how well I did this year.  When I made these goals, I was thinking that the surgeries I had just finished and the physical therapy I had just started was going to give me a relatively pain-free year. Unfortunately, it didn't work out that way, but as of October, I think I'm finally getting my medicines in balance and my pain under control without opiates.   

1) Religious / Spiritual:
     A)Never miss church unless sick or out of town.  Win. I've gotten into a good routine vis-a-vis church, so I consistently make it when I am in town.
     B) Participate in a mission or outreach with my churchFail. This never really got off the ground.
      C) Read The Message: The Bible in Contemporary Language.  Fail (s0 far).  I'm through to Kings.
     D)Write every day in a prayer and gratitude journal. Fail.
     E) Continue to Tithe. Win.  
2) Health
     A) Maintain my weight between 145 and 155 pounds.  Fail (but not too badly).  Today my scale says I weigh 161 lbs, but my weight does fluctuate; last week it was 158.  Not where I want to be, but nowhere close to regaining the 30 lbs.
     B) Swim or do Physical Therapy 4 times a weekFail to Win.  Didn't happen for me until July, and I was sick during one month, but I have made it to the gym at least 17 times a month for all of the last 5 months.  I see a big difference in my cardiovascular fitness.
     C) Do Physical Therapy Exercises Every Day. Fail. The exercises didn't end up helping, and I dropped them.
     D) Practice Aikido Every Day.  Fail.  I barely did any aikido this year.

3) Financial 
     A) Pay off loan from relatives in the amount of $1000Win. One more debt paid off!
     B) Pay off loan from relative in the amount of $30,000  Fail.  My health did not allow me to find any extra money to pay this off.  I did keep working on it, though, and I should be able to pay it off in July 2011 if everything goes smoothly. (Update 1/1/2011 WIN - got the money together to pay this off in December 2010)
     C) Fully Fund 2009 and 2010 Roth IRAs Win.  And this year the stock market actually went up, so there was some advantage to getting it together early.

4)  Dreams
     1) Write something besides this blogFail.  I didn't even do a good job writing  on this blog this year.
     2) Learn how to Accompany on the PianoFail.  This fell by the wayside about March.
     3) Get officially affiliated with a dojo.  Fail/Win.  I didn't manage to figure out aikido, but I did find a nice Judo dojo, so I'm back to my Judo practice 2x a week.
     4) Keep up with my ChineseFail.  This fell by the wayside about March.

5) Prosaic
     1) Practice with my carry firearms at least once a month.  Fail.
     2) Keep my house in a reasonable state of neatness.  Fail (but not too badly)  My house never really got neat, but it is not any messier than it was a year ago.

There's a lot of fail there, but a bit of win too.  OK, so the lessons I learned from this to use next year are:

(1) Prioritize goals.  I made myself a wish list and called it "goals," but basically it required too radical a lifestyle adjustment in all areas of my life.  I need to decide what is really important to me and set a few clear goals at a time to really get this to work.

(2) Don't make the perfect the enemy of the good.  On the other hand, I've got several goals that, while I did not succeed, I made some progress.   For instance, I won't be paying off the 30K loan this year, but I did keep throwing money at it, and, barring unforeseen problems, we will pay it off in July.

(3) Sometimes life kicks you in the nadgers.  Some stuff on this list did not get done and should have.  But a lot of stuff just fell by the wayside while I tried to regain a modicum of reasonable health.  Although I should have re-prioritized sometime around March (when I knew that there wouldn't be a quick fix), I kept thinking it would turn out OK and that I'd have time to catch up.

The Simple Dollar is doing a "a daily series focusing on specific activities you can do right now to set the stage for a great 2011."  I'm thinking about using it as my template for resolutions next year.  How are you going to set goals for next year?

1 comment:

  1. Wow. That's a lot of goals.

    My goals are usually pretty broad.
    1. Learn 1 new thing this year.
    2. Get stronger than I was the year before.

    I'm in the worst physical shape I've been in my life, so I failed miserably on #2, but I did start blogging and stuck with it, so I think I've achieved #1. Although I suppose it would have been better if I actually monetized and made some money at it or had more than a few regular visitors, but still a success.