How many of our favorites come from things that we have recently experienced? Do we develop new favorites or are favorites cultivated from a combination of nostalgia and experiences we had during a good time in our lives? Consider, for a moment, ice cream, which is one of my favorite things to eat. I’ve eaten lots of different kinds of ice cream in my life but I count two different flavors as my favorites – one is butter pecan. The first time I had butter pecan was on a waffle cone at a Times Square creamery, licking the treat with some college friends under the bright lights in the big city, new environment and new relationships and all that. Great way to make a new favorite.
My other favorite flavor is grape nut, a variety of ice cream they only make really well in Jamaica; eating it now reminds me of childhood Sunday evening desserts at my grandmother’s house surrounded by my family members long before I ever imagined that I would spend a big chunk of my adult years separated from said family. Grape nut ice cream, while a definite favorite, is a taste I don’t indulge in very often because every morsel enjoyment is tinged with a bit of sadness – the very definition of the word bittersweet.
If I had to choose, would I give up my long-ago memories for my recent ones? Never. The present is only made possible by the past we have gone through. Last week, I had some good moments and some bad ones, but every moment happened because of things I have done or said or learned some time before. A few days ago, I had a falling out with a friend but it was a friendship I cultivated years ago and the fact that we were able to resolve our differences and move on, well that was only possible because our relationship is grounded in things we passed through a long time ago. I wouldn’t trade the recent past either. Every day is a new experience, a new layer of varnish to protect a masterpiece, a new expression to try out and see how you like it. Like going to a new ice cream bar and tasting samples, seeing if we find a new flavor to love – a new contender for the favorite title.
Establish and build then keep on building. That’s my mantra these days.
Last week, I set some goals. Some, I barely achieved, others I did better on, some I completely failed at. But all of that happened because of decisions I made sometime prior. In January, I set my word of the year as Accomplish, which means, I set some time to work on my project and no matter what happens at the end of that period, I am going to complete it so I can move on to something else. Sometimes that works, sometimes, it doesn’t. But it does ramp up the productivity.
Last week’s goals were:
- Read 3 books – Check
- finish a reading challenge – I did
- blog everyday – Check. Click to read my posts: Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri
- post 5 YouTube videos – I only made 3 but they are videos I am supremely proud of and my viewers are loving. Quality above quantity. The video everyone is raving about is this one of my May TBR (click to watch and judge for yourself)
- make 20 new online friends – I did make new pals -less than 20 but more than 0
- write creatively everyday. I did. Current project to be completed soon.
- finish editing the novella – Check
- gym/run 5 times. I didn’t go to the gym but I did at-home workouts everyday.
- improve my daily run to 2.5 miles – Fail.
- spend 30 minutes each day learning/practicing a skill – yes
- save – yes
- pay towards a bill in my quest to be debt free – yes. I should have another bill paid off this month
In week 19, I am chasing these goals:
- Read the Bible everyday
- Read 3 books this week from my TBR
- blog everyday
- make 3 creative YouTube videos
- make 20 new online friends
- find a way to support someone else’s goals
- write creatively everyday
- submit my current project to beta readers
- spend 30 minutes each day learning/practicing a skill
- make payments towards a bill in my quest to be debt free this year
- sponsor a single-mother and her son for the Mothers’ Day brunch
- organize youth group outreach project to support mothers in the community
- run outdoors every day (see more about this below)
This week, I am starting my outdoor running for the year. In the past few years, I have tried and failed to keep up my outdoor running during the winter. When the temperature dips too low, running outside affects my breathing and I have developed bronchial issues that last way too long to be comfortable. This year, I decided to do my winter workouts in the gym, saving my outdoor running for the warmer months. I was hoping to start my outdoor running last week but it rained pretty much all week. This week, I hope the weather will be fair enough to really get this goal started.
One way I keep motivated to pursue a personal goal is to set a challenge that I can track, and to involve other people in it. I found a virtual running partner in a fellow blogger called Tarnished Soul, someone who is also looking to resume outdoor running. We are going to start slow, run-walk until we build up to some good running pace and solid mileage. Every day, I will add a little update to my blog post: the run we have planned as well as an update of what we accomplished. If you’d like to join us on this virtual run, just let me know in the comments so I can add you to my tracker.
Today being Day 1, the goal is to run-walk for at least 1 mile. Pace doesn’t matter. Just accomplish it.
Day 1 Updates:
Runwright jogged 1.5 miles
Tarnished Soul walked 1.25 miles.
And that’s my summary for the week past and my plans for week 19 and beyond. What about you?
How were your goals last week and what are you working on this week?