Wednesday, December 28, 2011

2011 Goal Wrap-Up and 2012 Goals

Remember way back in January of 2011when I posted a list of Life Goals I wanted to work on? Well, even though I haven't been posting about them regularly here, I have been working on them, and I actually did really well!!! I completed 3 out of 4, Huzzah!!! The 2012 goals I am creating for myself are in a similar vein to the 2011 goals, but they are more specific, and more challenging. However, before we get to those, let's do a check-in with the 2011 Goals:


#1 Build Up My Savings: WIN. Had major repair work done on my car, put down a security deposit on our new apartment, and gave the down payment to our wedding photographer ALL OUT OF SAVINGS!!! Going back to work full-time has certainly helped me to do all of this, but so has more careful attention to spending. Am I an angel? No, by no means, but I have definitely improved this year. Continuing to pay for our portion of the wedding with savings is a big 2012 goal, but I'll get to that in a minute.

#2 Regular Blog Posting: DRAW. I seem to go in spurts with this, depending on how busy I am. I'll blog every day or at least once a week betwen my two blogs for months, and then I'll stop for weeks or months because I get too busy. Although I did not meet my once-a-week quota consistently, I am still considering this goal a success, because I blogged more regularly and with more dedication in 2011 than I did in any of the years preceding, so there was definite progress.

#3 Lose 30lbs: LOSE. Or, should I say, FAIL. Fail Fail Faily Fail FAAAAAIIIILLLL. Okay, sorry, I'm done now. Seriously, though, I did not meet my weight loss goal. I was actually doing really well the first quarter of the year. By April 2011 I had lost a little over 10 lbs, which was right where I wanted to be at that point in the year. I was on track, excited, feeling great. And then, for some reason, I plateaued in May. I didn't put any weight back on, but I stopped losing. And then, in June, for reasons that are still a complete mystery to me, I put on 5lbs in the space of a week. Seriously, I weighed myself on Monday, and by Friday my weight had gone up 5lbs, with no change to my diet or exercise routine. My body fat stayed the same, my dimensions stayed the same, but those 5lbs just appeared. I was livid, rattled and frustrated...I'm getting riled up again just typing about it. I was right in the midst of The Bodice Challenge, exercising every day, eating well, taking good care of myself, and BOOM! There they were. It has been postulated that it was because I was putting on muscle, but I find that unlikely, because if that were the case, my percent body fat would have decreased, or my measurements would have changed, but they did not. Those mystery 5lbs stuck with me like glue. I stayed at that weight for most of the summer, and eventually came to terms with it. Outside observers said I looked great and that they could see a change, even though the numbers didn't agree, so I eventually made my peace and went with it. I stayed at that weight for most of the Summer. By late Summer/Early Autumn I had gone back to work full-time at a desk job, and my daily activity level had gone down quite a bit, and that decrease in activity started to show up in my weight, I was working all day and rehearsing for several different shows, always on the run, no time to cook, and eating out a lot. Unsurprsingly, I eventually put back on everything that I had lost. When I officially weighed myself on January 3rd, 2011, I weighed 162.4lbs. Today, January 6th, 2012, I weigh 164.8lbs. So, in short, I gained back everything I lost, plus an extra 2.5 lbs. Like I said, FAIL. I am obviously not happy about this, but rather than continuing to bitch about it here, I'll turn it into a new goal for 2012, see below.

#4 Use My Time More Effectively: WIN. Again, going back to work full time has helped with this. I am always up at a decent hour, and since I'm on the computer all day day at work, I spend very little time in front of the computer during my non-work hours (unless I'm blogging:).We have recently moved into our new apartment (yay!) and, by choice, we are not getting cable. I'm sure I could always be better, but across 2011 I can see a definite pattern of using my time much more effectively,and I'm actually rather proud of myself :)

Three out of Four isn't too shabby :) Well Done, Lynniebee :)

And now, it's a New Year, with new Goals :)

2012 Goals

#1. Pay for Our Portion of Our Wedding Without Accruing Any New Debt: In other words, no loans, no new credit cards, no maxing out of credit cards. We will pay for our portion of our wedding primarily through savings, and utilizing only our existing bank accounts and credit cards (I only have one credit card, and Mikey only has one card also). Out of respect for our families' privacy, I will not enumerate who is paying for what, only that the financial responsibilities that Mikey and I have agreed on will be paid for using only our exisitng savings and assets, and that we will begin our married life together in the black, with no new debt. How are we going to accomplish this? Glad you asked! These are some of the ways I/we plan on doing this:

-NO NEW BOOKS!!! I am placing myself on a Book-Buying Fast. From now until September 22nd, 2012, I am not allowed to buy any books. I am allowed to borrow books from friends or the library, I am allowed to accept books as gifts, and I am allowed to acquire books at Stuff Swap Parties with friends (as in, no $ is changing hands). Exception: If I attend any sort of class between now and September that requires a text book, I am allowed to buy the text book if I am unable to borrow or trade someone for it.

-NO NEW CLOTHES!!! I am allowed to acquire clothes at Clothing Swaps, I am allowed to buy clothes at thrift stores, and I am allowed to accept clothes as gifts or as hand-me-downs from friends. Exception: My Wedding Dress

The next portion of how I plan to accomplish this Savings Goal actually leads me into Goal#2 *points down*

Goal#2. Eat Out a Maximum of Twice Per Week: Let's be honest. I love to go out to eat at restaurants. I also love to write reviews for restaurants. However, as you have probably gathered by reading my other blog, I also love to cook. I try to keep these two sides of culinary pleasure in balance, but lately, due to being extremely busy and extemely exhausted, I have been leaning far too heavily on the restaurant/takeout side. It will be better for both my wallet and my waistline if I cook at home more often. I am allowed to get takeout or eat a restaurant a maximum of twice per week (once a week or not at all is preferable, but I am allowed up to twice per week guilt-free :) This includes stopping at a coffee shop and lunch breaks (as in, doing these things count towards the twice a week limit). I now lives upstairs from my dayjob, so forgetting to pack/bring a lunch is not an acceptable excuse. Other than those two meals, all other meals will be created from the weekly grocery shopping. Yes, I do know that most grocery chains have ready made sandwiches, dinners, sushi, etc. That is a gray area that I haven't quite sorted out yet, Mikey and I will deal with that on a case by case basis for the moment, and I'll come back to it later. Going to friend's or family's homes for a potluck or a home cooked meal does not count towards the quota, however, pitching for pizza or other takeout does count toward the quota, as money will be expended. This is going to be hard, I fully realize this, and I am as prepared as a foodie on a budget possibly can a way, I'm also really excited. For the first time since grad school, I have my own kitchen :)  My pots and pans are calling to me, I can't wait to play with them again :)

Goal#3. Love My Body Again.  In previous years, I have called this goal *Lose Weight* or *Get Healthy* or *Daily Exercise*, or something along those lines, but I inevitably fall short of those. Those all sound like punishments and chores. This past year has shown me that I do not love myself anywhere near enough. I try to be endlessly loving and supportive to others, but I don't save enough of that love for myself. I have flashes of real self-love, but they are not constant, they come and go. Even my attempts at weight loss and better health are not motivated by self-love. They are motivated by guilt and disgust, feeling like I am broken and need to be fixed, like somehow my life would magically be better if I dropped 30lbs, and that's bullshit. Rationally, I know it is bullshit, and I would NEVER encourage this kind of thinking in anyone else. But for reasons unclear to me, I still do it, not all the time, but more than I should. This year I want to actually learn and embody real self-love that is not dependent on what size jeans I wear. Do I still want to lose weight? Yes. Do I still want to improve my eating and exercise habits? Yes. But I want to re-examine my motivations for wanting these things and approach them from a different place. I want to love myself the way I am and still strive to improve. And when I pursue these health goals, I want to support myself they way I would support a loved one, no beating myself up. This will be a huge challenge, and a hard one to measure empirically, but I'm worth it :)

I'll be updating regarding these goals as often as it is relevant, but I will try not to make them the constant topic of conversation :) Any advice/support/feedback you care to share would be most welcome :)

2012 is going to be a very excting year for me :) Can't wait for all the adventures to come!!!