Sunday, May 12, 2013

Where does time go?

Today is day 1,000 in my Day Zero project.  I can hardly believe that it went by so fast.  I've finished over half of my list of goals and will be making a hefty charity donation tomorrow for the ones I did not.  I am so glad that I choose to do this - so much so that in a few weeks I plan to start over with DayZero part II - it pushed me to take time in my life to do things that I see as important rather than just letting one mundane day follow another.

I've written about goals as I accomplish them, so here's a little bit about what the goals I had started but not completed.
  • #1 - making a will was harder than I blithely imagined ... so many decisions to make and only me to make them.  I have the form, the executor, and most of the major things decided, but I still need to work out some of the details (one of which is how detailed I want to be about physical possessions!).
  • #3 - I originally planned to lose 40 pounds; I'm down 22.  During the first two years of this project, I either held steady (or gained).  In the last few months, I discovered two things that are really working for me (I've lost all my extra plus the aforementioned 22 pounds from my starting date), and I expect to be at or below my goal by the end of the year.  What are those two things you ask?  First, an online site (with a mobile app) called MyFitnessPal that is a calorie counter program; it's not glamorous, but it works for me.  Second, a mobile app called Zombies, Run! that I've been using for exercise - the sounds of those zombies gaining on me is a huge motivator to keep moving and this is the only time in my life I can remember actually looking forward to exercise.  The program is a mix of audiobook, low level game, and my own music designed for runners (though I am using it mostly with my exercise bike).
  • #5 - someday I WILL learn Latin.  I have lost count of how many times I have done the first few lessons in this course online ... too many things competing for my attention to allow me to give a lot of attention to foreign vocabulary flashcards.
  • #19 - Plutarch is kicking my butt.  I'm about halfway through the Lives of Noble Grecians and Romans, and I've been picking at it since last July.  This is exceptionally slow going for me.  However, there's only 7 more titles in this section after I finish this one, so I expect this goal will reappear on my next list.
  • #23 - the sad truth about craft projects is that there are always more to do than time to do them.  Because a new Christmas stocking was the idea of another family member and because I'm not really into the Christmas year-round concept and because I chose a really difficult-to-work-with thread to use with a currently half-competed cross-stitch pattern, I am not particularly motivated to work on this much of the time.  I did make progress ... slow, agonizing progress while I wished I was doing a different project.
  • #24 - I visited two of my four siblings (the ones that I live closest to) and would have loved to have made it to the others as well but didn't manage to find the time for an extended trip.  Most family visiting (and there has been lots with two family weddings in the last year) has occurred on my parent's farm.
  • #29 - I got through about half of the Dewey numbers I had left to do and have entire "hundreds" sections that I have completed now.  Still lots of 400s and 800s to go.
  • #32 - I did an Asian meal (Sri Lanka) and a North American one (Mexico)
  • #36 & 37 - Wrote 3 and memorized two.  All three that I wrote were on vacations - guess seeing new things really does get the creative juices going.
  • #41 - this one suffered when work got nuts.  I'm taking a professional level photography course where you work at your own pace.  The classroom portion of the learning I can squeeze into a weekend.   Finding time to take the assignment photos under the correct conditions is harder.  My final course work is due in January, and I'm about halfway through.
  • #59 - I was so close ... just needed one more afternoon out picking something.  If I would have counted picking berries in my backyard, I would have easily made it.
  • #74 - I wobbled about whether I've achieved this one or not.  I have made my walk in under 35 minutes a couple of times, but the purpose was to be able to do it consistently - which I can't.
  • #87 - I have everything but the time.
  • #90 - I learned three new ones.  In a strange quirk, one of my new constellations to identify was Delphinus, and, shortly after I learned to find it, I helped make a theater backdrop of stars.  I did not plan where to put the lights - just stuck them in randomly from the back.  When I went around for a final look, I saw Delphinus near the top center.
  • #93 - again, so close ... I went to eight.  Mostly in London when I visited on my solo trip.  I guess I got over-confident having so many done early that I thought I would have plenty of time to make it to a few more.
  • #96 - ummm, I guess my keyboard is more decorative than useful lately.
 I plan to give myself a break of a couple of weeks and then come back with a new list of goals to start on for another run of 1,001 days.  Some of the items above will be included; I think that I may put some of the goals that I did accomplish back on as well (it's good to remember not to complain, for example).  And, I've also been thinking about some bright fresh things to try as well.

One thing that I did realize in doing this list is that the "once a month/week" goals become frustrating for me if life gets crazy because I feel like it's just one more thing that needs to go on my chore list.  And, the object of doing this, for me, was not to give myself more chores ... rather to expand my life in positive ways.  So, I expect to structure my goals in a way to avoid this.  Also, I feel like I was ambitious in how much I could accomplish in some areas on the first go around ... it's nice to shoot high (and I don't know if I ever would have gone to London alone without this project), but it's also great to feel that sense of "I've accomplished something".  So, there may be a better balance of huge projects that take time for weeks (photography class, I'm looking at you) to smaller things that I can finish in a single weekend.

Above all ... I have loved working on this during the last 1,000 days.  I started it as a whim and am so glad I did.  If you have wandered onto my page from PostCrossing or another site that I'm connected to, I would encourage anyone to try it.  Remember the goals are yours ... how do you want to change your life?

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