I often go back and forth on the need for goals (not the long-term ones, mind you, but more along the lines of the monthly goals I had last year). Although I love creating them, it’s important to make sure that they’re meaningful, that I’m not just using it to fill some void or distract me from the larger goals I really want to pursue but seem intimidating.
A few weeks ago I got an email from the librarian that managed to light a fire in me again. Without fail, he’s always asked, “What’s the next big thing for Liz?”
I wouldn’t say that I’ve necessarily become complacent. I prefer to look at it as giving myself a breather once I made the big move, particularly after getting Hurley. Although I’m the type of over-commit and get overly involved, I wanted to instead take it slow in developing my own routine and getting comfortable with my new surroundings.
All that being said, it’s time for me to be more diligent about embracing the good life. So I did what I do best: I googled, researched, made lists, and put 10+ books on hold at the library. It was through that process that discovered the Packing Light book, which then led me to the author’s blog. While I was skimming that, I couldn’t help but chuckle when I got to this post. It was exactly what I was doing.
It was my intention to come up with a list of summer goals. In fact, I’d already started a draft post with about half a dozen goals. But then I decided enough was enough. As the author so eloquently stated, “What I’m talking about is how, at some point, you have to stop asking, stop researching, stop polling the audience, and start living.”
That’s what I intend to focus on this summer.
Instead of being specific and laying out all my goals for the summer, I’ve decided my approach will be to try 12 new things. During my research phase I created a googledoc of different places, events and organizations to check out to feel more connected to the community. It could be as simple as trying a local coffee shop or as intimidating as going to a meetup group activity (because I naturally joined three during my crazy googling spree).
It’s also my intent to have some of these new ventures be connected to larger goals I have on my 30 Before 30 list or as part of my year of daring myself. That includes things like taking up a volunteer activity (turned in my application for the library last week!), learning yoga (starting with the basics, not just by jumping into a class) and joining a professional organization.
Particularly given the range of activities, I didn’t want to specifically say I’d do one new thing for each week of the summer (and really, I’m not sure if it’s actually 12 weeks, but that’s about what I remember and seems like a good number). In part I avoided that since I knew I would beat myself up if, by week five, I didn’t accomplish something for that specific week. Plus I already know two of my events will occur during the same week. I didn’t want experiencing Lincoln to be too rigid or stressful.
The bottom line through all of this is that it should be fun. I don’t want it to be a chore or something on my to-do list. I want it to be a way to start living the good life in Lincoln. It already started with a bang on Friday night at the minor league baseball game. Gorgeous weather, a new friend and an exciting game. Not a bad way to kick off my summer.
One down, 11 to go!