Solving the Routine Drain Problem

By: Tina Baiter

Do you realize there are only seven weeks left until we celebrate one of my very favorite holidays, New Year’s Eve? I don’t know which is odder, the fact that the year has flown by so quickly, or the fact that New Year’s Eve is now one of my favorite holidays.

Last year I rang in the New Year with a commitment to improve myself utilizing the techniques I have learned through the Living Every Minute program. One of the very first things I did in January was sit down and write out a list of 25 fairly easy goals I wanted to accomplish by the end of the year. I started off doing exactly as Dr. Tim teaches. I incorporated my goals into my weekly, and later daily, to-do lists.

Somewhere along the way though, I let the easiness of falling back into my routine life take control again. I stopped looking at my goal list. Before long, I didn’t even remember I had written out goals for 2010. Then, over lunch last week with my favorite mentor, Dr. Tim, I was given a copy of my 2010 goal list for review. I was in shock. I had not thought about the list since I last looked at in March. Now, eight months later, I was a bit disappointed I had only achieved five of the 25 things on the list.

The Good News
There was good news though. Some of the things on my list no longer applied. The book deal I was working on fell through when the subject I wanted to write about decided not to cooperate. But I helped co-author another book. So that was a win-win.

I had visited two new state capitols on my quest to visit all 50 state capitols. My goal for 2010 was to visit three capitols. My boyfriend and I are planning a trip to visit number three before the end of this month.

I had adopted a dog, and although we have not yet purchased the house I wanted for 2010, we have learned a lot about real estate.

I have met my goal of reading at least three new books each month. Though sometimes the books are small, I have learned a great deal this year. Along the way I have also had the opportunity to meet some of the authors who wrote the books, inspiring me to continue on my dream to publishing my own book. Yes, I have even started on the outline for the new book.

The good news was that even without looking at my goals daily, I had managed to accomplish five things I probably would not have accomplished otherwise. The five things I accomplished were all accomplished within the first three months of 2010. During that time I was dedicated to using the Living Every Minute, Design the Life You Deserve program.

The Bad News
Still, there was one major thing glaring at me. I had not accomplished 20 other things on the list. What had I accomplished over the last eight months? I really didn’t have a good answer.

I realized some of the goals I had set included becoming a better aunt, sister, granddaughter and daughter. I had promised to make weekly phone calls to people who lived far away. But it became easier not to follow through with the commitment.

I had not saved as much money for 2010 as I had hoped I would because I stopped participating in the spending plan I had set-up for myself. It was easy to stop because spending money on other things right now was so much fun. Now reaching the goal trip of a month in Australia next July will be harder to reach. Especially with holiday spending coming up!

The Best News
But I am not worried. The lunch meeting with Dr. Tim reminded me of something important. I am where I am right now. And since I already have my goals set for 2010, I still have seven weeks to make sure I accomplish the other 20 items on the list.

What about you? Have you taken the time yet to write your goals? It is amazing to me how putting things down on paper makes you commit to them. The goals I wrote at the beginning of 2010 were a contract with myself to grow as a person. I do not like it when I disappoint myself. Have you kept the contract you wrote with yourself at the beginning of this year?

I have again incorporated my goals into my daily task lists. Each day I will work to grow my wealth, to improve my health and relationships and to expand my mind. And when December 31 rolls around, I will again be excited to celebrate New Year’s Eve because it will mean I am celebrating a year of accomplishments. Then I will spend New Year’s Day deciding how I want to grow in 2011!

[Ed. Note: Tina Baiter is the co-author of Green Beret Doctor: Health Plan for Life. She is the new correspondent for Living Every Minute’s Character Development program. To comment on this week’s article, or to ask advice on character development, visit our blog. The Living Every Minute, Design the Life You Deserve program will be available to the public on December 1.]

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