February goal recap

It’s easy to make goals, but harder to reach them. In an effort to keep myself on track and be accountable, here’s my report card for February.

Write 1000 words per week: I didn’t write 1000 words per week, but did make progress.

Post blogs three days a week:  Again, I fell short of that goal, so I’m revising my goal. (more on that topic below)

Health Goals – C

Research and try migraine treatments: I have been trying a new over-the-counter treatment for migraines. It doesn’t appear to be working, but I’ll give it a little longer.

Consistent exercise: Epic FAIL…

PT for tennis elbow: Improved!

Household Goals – A
Organize every room and closet in the house: I’m a little behind on this, but not too far off schedule.

Personal Goals – B+
Read two books: So sad – no progress on this item.

Document family history: I haven’t spent a lot of time on this, BUT with the help of a cousin or two, we solved a mystery!

Plan 34th anniversary trip: Nothing done this month, but still on track

Spiritual growth: This is difficult to measure, but I am being consistent with my quiet time.

So, for the month of February, I have a 3.0 GPA, which was where I wanted to be. However, I am seeing a trend with my writing goal that has caused me to make a revision.

booksMy priority is to write books. I have two started, one of which came together in a very amazing way. Every author who is unknown needs a blog and a social media presence to market their books, so I’ve been trying to build an audience while writing the books. Unfortunately, I’ve been writing posts for the blog, commenting on other blogs, commenting on the Facebook and Twitter accounts of other blogs; basically writing everything but a book.

I spoke with a coach who pointed out that unless I actually get the book finished and published, the purpose for the blog becomes purely social rather than entrepreneurial. She gave me “permission” to take a break from being social and encouraged me to post to my blog just once week (I may do twice if one post is on Wordless Wednesday). So, you’ll be seeing a little less of me for a while, but I hope to be back with a book under my belt!

2013 goals

I learned quite a bit reviewing 2012, and used that information to make a plan for 2013. However, it’s time to stop looking back and start moving forward!

Writing Goals
Post blogs three days a week:  I realize that blogging five days a week is not realistic for me, and trying to do so was causing more stress than pleasure.
Write 1000 words per week: I want to finish a writing project this year, but it’s a little overwhelming. I’ve decided to tackle it chunk by chunk.

Health Goals
Research and try migraine treatments: I saw my neurologist in November and there is nothing new on the horizon for the treatment of migraines. However, I am always receiving kind messages from caring friends who have heard that this or that worked for someone. I’m open to trying anything with the approval of my doctor.
pilatesConsistent exercise: I enjoy my treadmill and Zumba, but both tend to bother my tennis elbow. Yoga is challenging and I usually feel like a complete klutz, so I stopped exercising for a few months. An acquaintance mentioned her love of Pilates and gave me a couple of DVDs to try. So far I’m liking it!
PT for tennis elbow: Speaking of tennis elbow, I need to get back to doing the physical therapy. No excuses!

Household Goals
Organize every room and closet in the house: This shouldn’t be too difficult since there are just two of us living in our home. It’s really not too bad, but there are a few things in every area that are driving me a little nuts. There are 12 rooms and closets, so organizing one per month seems very doable!

Personal Goals
Read two books: For those who are voracious readers, this may seem like a very small and silly goal. I love to read, but it’s always something that gets shoved to the end of my priority list. I love history and set out to read a biography of every president before I leave this world. I’ve only read two so far, so I need to pick up the pace. The husband and I have chosen to eliminate some television so we can both spend more time reading.
Document family history: Again, I love history and what better way to explore it than by discovering the roles my ancestors played. I hope to keep scanning photos and documents my mom and I uncover while organizing her house (that’s another goal!) I’m limiting this to one day per week as it can burn a LOT of time.
Plan 34th anniversary trip: The husband and I take turns planning long weekends to celebrate our anniversary. It’s my year and I have some great ideas for a memorable getaway!


Spiritual growth: This is an ongoing goal. Truthfully, nothing else is very successful and I’m out of balance if I neglect to nurture spiritual growth.

I have a few other goals I’m considering, but for now, these seem realistic. And as always, I plan to accomplish them with *finesse!

What are your goals?

*finesse (skill, flair, grace elegance, poise, assurance)

Looking back – Part 2

Yesterday I shared about the process my colleagues and I went through after finishing a major project, reviewing what went well and what didn’t. Having just finished 2012, it’s a good time to do the same on a personal level. Yesterday I reviewed what didn’t go well or as planned, so today I’ll focus on the positive side of 2012.

I started a blog! As stated in the previous post, I wasn’t as consistent as I’d hoped, but I took the plunge. Fortunately, some of you joined me and have stuck around. You are much appreciated! I’ve enjoyed the interaction and feedback and hope to receive more of that in 2013.

I began a writing project! No, I’m not as far along in the project as I’d hoped, but it has been an amazing experience just doing the research. So many things have just fallen into place that I KNOW I’m supposed to continue and am looking forward to sharing my progress with you.

I tried two homeopathic remedies for the treatment of migraines. Neither was successful, but I’m actively doing all I can to reduce the frequency and severity of the headaches.

I was consistent enough with my exercise routine in 2012 that it hasn’t been difficult to pick up the pace this year. That’s a huge plus!

On a much more personal level, I was blest with a new granddaughter thanks to my son and daughter-in-love.  In addition, I have a renewed relationship with my daughter and 18-month-old granddaughter.  To top it all off, the husband and I celebrated 33 years of marriage!

Having spent some time thinking about the things that either exceeded or failed to meet my expectations in 2012, I realize that I need to make some changes in the way I approach projects so there are more successes to celebrate. I’ll keep brainstorming ways to make that happen – with *finesse.

Tomorrow: Goals for 2013!

*finesse (skill, flair, grace elegance, poise, assurance)

Looking back

When I worked on major projects with a team, we always sat down a few weeks after the project was completed to recap. It was important to learn what went well and what didn’t. I’m not big on New Year’s resolutions, but I do think the beginning of the year is a good time to look back and take stock of what went well and what didn’t.

I’ve been reviewing what didn’t go well or as planned, and to be honest, 2012 did not finish with all the *finesse I’d hoped. The first thing that popped into my head is this blog. When I began, I was advised to write every day and include pictures. I did fairly well for about six months and then I seemed to lose steam. I need to think about why that happened. Is posting daily realistic? Do I need to include photos or illustrations with every post? Do I even want to continue?

The answer to the last question is yes, and for three reasons. First, I need to be creative and writing has always been a creative outlet for me. Second, I need to feel connected to other women. I LOVE your feedback. Third, I am working on a much more involved writing project and the blog will be a great way to share it.

Speaking of that writing project, I had hoped to be much further along. That’s another thing that didn’t go as planned. I am committed to the project, so I need to explore ways to keep it moving.

On the health front, I would have liked to see my tennis elbow completely healed, a reduction in the frequency of migraines, a five pound weight loss and a more consistent exercise routine.

I’m going to spend some time thinking about each of these items and others that failed to meet my expectations in 2012. I need to decide if they are something I want to accomplish and are these goals realistic. If so, what do I need to do differently to see some progress?

Tomorrow: What went well in 2012!

*finesse (skill, flair, grace elegance, poise, assurance)

Blogging with Finesse

This week’s Friend with *Finesse features someone many of you know – ME! I’m not a self-promoting person by nature, but I want to share my **interview posted on Rene Syler’s Good Enough Mother blog.

You see, Rene is the reason I started a blog. I had read her story about making a decision to have a preventive double mastectomy, then being fired by her employer and was inspired by her attitude. Much to my surprise, Rene responded with very encouraging words and advice regarding my recent health challenge that led me to resign my much-loved position in media/public relations at the Oregon Zoo.

I started my Femme-de-Finesse blog because Rene advised me to “write, write, write,” which I have tried to do every day. I hope you enjoy reading the blog, but more importantly, I hope you feel inspired to comment. I miss the interaction of being part of a team, so please consider this an open invitation to be part of the Femme-de-Finesse team.

*finesse (skill, flair, grace elegance, poise, assurance)

** read the interview here: http://goodenoughmother.com/2012/06/life-lessons-linda-smith/