Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes

by Nneka Kelly

“They” say that you aren’t supposed to talk about yourself if you want to grow your blog readership. Today I’m breaking the rule.

My word for the year is foundation. I have many goals that revolve around building habits, 3 in particular, meditating, writing, and exercising. As always, the year began with a bang, but by the end of March things started to fizzle. In April, I was knocked down by the cold. While I was lying in bed recuperating, I took stock of where I stood and recommitted to where I want to be at the end of the year. I also admitted to myself what I really want out of establishing those 3 habits. I made 3 major changes to align myself with my goals for the year.

Kicked Off The Artist’s Way

A gift from one of my friends in another life, the book was sitting on my shelves for almost 10 years. I never picked it up because I’m not the “creative type.” However, I got curious about it because I want to be able to write and speak exceptionally well. Little did I know that it’s a book about self-discovery.

One of my admissions is that I feel lost. I have a grand sense of what I’d like my life to be like, but I don’t have a very concrete sense of what I enjoy doing, what makes me tick, or what I want to do as an adult. I’m not sure if that makes any sense.

The best part about the Artist’s Way is that I have to write everyday. As the writing is stream of consciousness, not for production, it addresses 2 of my goal habits, writing and meditating. The artist dates are also helping me to get out and experience the world – a prerequisite for good writing and creativity in general. As a bonus, I spend some time figuring out what I like doing.

Joined Weight Watchers

I sucked it up and joined Weight Watchers. My goal for the year was to establish the habit of daily exercise, but deep down my desire is to lose weight. I finally admitted it and faced the fear of failure.

I feel healthier for the daily exercise, but it was not getting to the heart of the matter. It wasn’t helping me to reach the real goal of losing weight. Weight Watchers will help me address the half of the equation that I’ve always ignored – FOOD. Let’s just say that I have a lot to work out in my relationship with food.

Physically Moving

By the end of May, I’ll be out of my 3 bedroom house in the suburbs and into a 1 bedroom carriage house in the city. I will be able to walk everywhere in my world: work, church, library (Toastmaster’s), park, University, and local shops. My daily walk will become a natural part of my routine. One of my goals is to become a naturally active person rather than someone who sits around for 23 hours and schedules 1 hour of exercise to repair the damage.

While early rising has tremendous benefits, it’s just not for me. I can now get 7-8 hours of sleep by making my walk to work my daily walk and my morning pages my meditation and writing everyday. I won’t have to wake up at what I consider an ungodly hour and badger myself on a daily basis.

I get a $500/month raise out of this move which buys me freedom. I will use it to reduce debt and build my savings. The raise also helps me with my approach to this site. I can relax and write from Spirit, rather than obsess about stats and chase the latest technique. I can also experiment and develop my style without fear of losing readers.

What Does This Mean to You?

For almost all of April I was sick. I was running myself ragged between the day job, board presidency at church, and building the blog. I was chiseling away at the foundation I’m trying to build. I realized that I need to take care of myself so that I can have the capacity to give to the world. I have big plans for my life, but this year is about becoming stronger and setting the stage. I will be devoting my time, energy, and resources to building my foundation.

Not to panic, I’m still going to post. However, I’m discontinuing the regular spots (Year of Prayer, Fab 5 on Friday, and Monday Musings). It doesn’t mean that there won’t be posts on prayer, links, and questions, it just means that they won’t be on a schedule. I am also reducing the posting frequency from 5-7 times a week to 3-5 times a week. I want to improve the quality of posts. I’m also going to be more selective of the activity that happens in the background to drive traffic to the blog.

As we approach the half way mark of the year, do you find that you are wavering on your goals? You might need to shift some of your priorities, or drop some of the embellishments, or find a new route to accomplish them. Take some time to assess where you are, check in on the validity of your goals, re-align yourself with them, and finally start marching in that direction again.

Now to get on with renewal, I’m heading off to vacation ;-) 

In Spirit,
Nneka

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