Goals for 2013

I've decided to slightly shift my goal lists this time around - instead of framing things as successes and failures, I'm going to try and incentivize the more difficult to achieve annual goals.

1. Improve my health. 
I've been walking for 45 minutes to an hour five days a week with Muse and Cheeto. It's gorgeous here, so it's not hard to maintain - as long as I keep making it a priority. To this I am adding the Couch to 5k regimen, Wii's Just Dance 3, Dance Dance Revolution, and my Planet Fitness membership. My plan at the moment is to essentially pay myself for keeping up with moving more. If I finish the Couch to 5k plan, for example, I intend to treat myself to dance classes. With the gym, if I go X number of times in Y period of time, I will reward myself with Z. So far I'm thinking some kind of foot massage will be in order. Essentially, I'm giving myself cool experiences if I'm more physically active, and if I happen to lose any weight with this increased activity, I'll treat myself with various material gifts every N number of pounds (budget permitting).

2. Take steps toward performing again.
Dance class counts. Perhaps voice lessons. Maybe acting lessons. Maybe auditioning for something. If I'm cast in something, anything, I plan to take myself and some friends out for celebratory bowling.

3. Travel.
It's a reward in and of itself, but I'd like to pull off a road trip to Montana and spend at least a few hours in Canada. This will require me finally sucking it up and getting my passport photo taken. Muse and I also need to get to Boulder to visit his amazing/wonderful/fun/awesome/fabulous sister and hopefully see his niece (maybe in Chicago?And if Chicago, see family, family friends, and friends who are family). Bonus life points if I go someplace beyond that.

4. Read.
I hit my ten book goal last year because I started reading on my mobile devices. I've very mindfully created more free time for myself, and I need to figure out how much of it I want to devote to pleasure reading. As long as I finish whichever book I acquired most recently, I'm giving myself an unlimited book budget.

5. Be selfish.
I'm not going to get into the Phoebe debate on whether or not any act can every truly be unselfish. But, I do have a tendency to spend too much time worrying about other people's impressions of me. I want to do things for myself, for my reasons, to further my own end-goals. The reward here, I believe, is peace of mind.

6. Write.
I *will* use this space for whatever the hell I want. I've spent too much time worrying that I should reserve my blog for a limited number of things or focus it to "increase traffic," etc. Forget all that - I'm just going to post about what's on my mind, what I'm doing, what I'm not doing - what*ever*. :) For this I will have the pleasure of looking back at this space to see who I was during this time. That's ultimately what this blog has served as for me, so I may as well be true to that.

7. Focus. Or not.
I see myself as an aspiring Jane of all trades. This makes directing my career efforts difficult, as generalists don't seem to be valued much. I intend to spend some time reflecting on what I really want out of a career, out of life and moving forward from there. Perhaps fragmentation can be the right path. Or not? As with being selfish, my reward here is potential peace of mind.

8. By the end of the year, have at least one moment where I have felt like I was exploding with joy. 
Because I want at least one spectacularly gleeful moment this year, if not a whole long string of them. 

How'd I do? 2012

1. Up the ante and read ten for-fun books. (Up from last year's five.)
Status: Success! 
The Opposite of Fate: Memories of a Writing Life - Amy Tan
The Joy Luck Club - Amy Tam
Punished: A mother's cruelty. A daughter's survival. A secret that couldn't be told. - Nonna Bannister 
The Wild Things - Dave Eggars
Big Girl Small - Rachel Dwoskin
Yellow Wallpaper - Charlotte Perkins Gilman
Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power - Rachel Maddow
Red Azalea - Anchee Minn
Bossypants - Tina Fey
Inheritance - Christopher Paolini (my god, will this author ever stop using the word "fingering?! Please.)

2. Climb a wall. Status: Failure.

3. Apply to grad school (minus the beard). Status: Failure.

4. As a carry-over from 2011, travel outside of the U.S. Status: Failure. 

5. Stay true to my Weight Watchers plan. Despite their creepy video. Status: Failure.

6. Go bowling. I love bowling*, but never go. Status: Failure.

7. Run a mile without dying. No matter how fit I've been, I've always hated running - however, it lends itself to my plan for #8. (Also sans beard.) Status: Failure. I did decrease my mile time though. :)

8. Operation: SUPER OMEGA TOP SECRET. You'll see. Status: 0.25. Can't tell you yet.

9. Sing more. Way more. Status: Success! 

10. At 11:59 p.m. on December 31st, feel like this: (http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=jKlxjbhB9HEStatus: Success! 

A lousy 3.25 out of ten. But it was ultimately a good year.

It happened

I've been told by a few people in my life that there are two topics I never go a day without mentioning: dogs and San Francisco (I'd argue that we need to put food planning on that list, but I suppose it's not my list).

Well, I already have my darling terror of a terrier, Cheeto - so I moved to the Bay Area. It may not be the city-city, but it's close enough in the East Bay. I got here in September and it has been amazing. Truly amazing.

I feel good, connected, like I'm actually in the moment and living a life. Let's not dwell on how rare that feeling has generally been for me.

I've made major strides in improving my physical health (not to mention the emotional benefit of being here). I haven't been this happy in a long time.

Here's to a prosperous 2013!

Much love,