life, productivity system

Plan Update: Year 1

Long-time readers may remember that last summer I came up with a three-year plan for my life. I was about to start a new job, and I had been spending a lot of time thinking about what I wanted and how I might get there. It has now been one year, so how are things going? I had four concrete goal areas and one wishy-washy one.

Goal 1: Save for a house. Due to a combination of circumstances that included an unexpected bequest and a pandemic, we’re doing well on this. (The likelihood that by the end of the three years, local prices will have gone up enough to require even more savings is one I’m aware of, yes.) Year 2 goal: more of the same.

Goal 2: Home improvement. There was a backlog of non-critical problems with our apartment that annoyed the hell out of me to look at every day. Those are taken care of. I painted the kitchen and got myself a desk and a bookcase to be My Very Own Workspace (no idea when or if working from home will end). The low-hanging fruit has been dealt with. Year 2 goal: Deal with the stuff we have crammed into our apartment’s inadequate storage spaces.

Goal 3: Enjoy my work. The new job is going well. I like them, and everyone seems to be happy with me. It’s been a little weird being all-remote this entire time, but everyone else is in the same boat. I don’t think I’ll have any problem staying here a while. Volunteering has been more challenging. I am spread too thinly, and I feel unfocused and ineffective. Year 2 goal: Focus on climate stuff.

Goal 4: Reach a point where creative work is bringing in some money. This is complicated, since it’s not something I can entirely control or plan out. If we put $X in the savings account every month, we will eventually hit our target, but I could write all day every day for the next two (or twenty) years and get nowhere. I’m writing more slowly than I wanted to when I made up a schedule for the year, buuuuut he past 18 months have been kinda sucky. I got some stuff done, so: Yay. I am getting two projects ready to self-publish (look for those early next year). I’m going to see what happens with these, and adjust course as seems sensible afterwards. The queue is full of novels to work on in the meantime.

That leaves art. All I really wanted to accomplish this year was to play around with some things and see what I like. I am doing that, although again, energy is hard to come by. 

Year 2 goals: Launch two books and do two more drafts. Keep playing around with the art stuff.

“Goal” 5: Be happy with myself. That’s not even a goal, just the bucket into which I throw everything that goes on the habit tracker in my journal. Am I meditating? Getting exercise? Working my brain? Keeping in touch with people? It’s debatable whether all of that stuff adds up to happiness–and it’s hard to tell whether or not it’s helping, given the weird circumstances of the past year-plus–but I don’t think it hurts. I feel like I’m doing the right things in this area, but I could be doing them more consistently, so that’s something I’ll try to work on this next year.

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