In May 2019 I changed the way I was monitoring my short and medium term goals, adopting Bless' approach in my search for a balanced life. This month I am changing things round again. I didn't feel that my own interpretation of this approach in terms of the actual goals I'd set and how I was rating them was correct (for me), and I have spent a good deal of November thinking about what it was I actually wanted to achieve.
The initial trigger was asking myself the question based on one of my goals - did I want to 'live life to the full' or did I want to 'live a fulfilled life', and after a lot of thinking I have answered that question. I want to 'live a fulfilled life', something which will have a different meaning for everyone but I am clear in my own mind what I am aiming for. This has prompted me to review my goals and rating, and to change the way I choose to record them.
The biggest change, and actually the most obvious now I've bothered to think it through, is that one of the previous goals I had set was actually my main goal and that the other goals were a means to achieve this main goal. So with that in mind, this is how I see things at the moment. The ratings shown are based on this different approach and aren't really comparable to previous ratings (where the goal has remained the same.
My goal is to achieve a lifestyle where I can honestly say that I LIVE A FULFILLED LIFE . To achieve this I want to focus on these sub-goals:
- I am financially secure and remain completely debt free 
- I take an active role in my local community, and have strong bonds with family and friends 
- My home is always clean and tidy 
- My garden is always tidy and presentable 
With the exception of the garden, I am pleased with these goals and the positive affect that achieving them has on my life. I have previously focused on the tasks needed to achieve this and feel that the correct habits are now embedded in my everyday life so I won't list the ongoing tasks which achieve this unless I feel that the rating is slipping.
I am finding it hard to maintain the garden so I am in the process of looking for a gardener to help out. The knock-on effect is that, for now, I can only afford to pay for a gardener OR a cleaner so I'm back to doing my own housework!
- I have a positive outlook on life and am benefiting by avoiding bouts of depression and keeping my emotional well being at a healthy level 
- I lead an active life, benefiting from increased fitness and improvements in my general health 
- I eat sensibly and healthily and am benefiting by losing weight and experiencing increased energy levels [9.5]
- I make best use of my time to lead a full and productive life 
- I live life now, in the moment 
- I strive to remove my attachment to material things 
These goals need more effort! I don't plan to list all the tasks for each category, partly because it tends to be repetitive every month but mostly because I am listing my monthly targets in my personal diary and some of those tasks are for things which don't belong on this blog. I've decided to just have a short list of SMART goals to hopefully improve the ratings in one or more of these categories. I feel I have been trying to do too much at once so am opting for a more relaxed approach, focusing on fewer things but doing them well. The SMART goals approach was used when I worked in an office and I know from personal experience that it works, SMART goals being Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant and Timely. So with that in mind, my tasks for December are:
- Declutter a minimum of 5 items, concentrating on the ones which are taking up a lot of space - by December 31st 2019.
- Complete the meal plan for December - by December 4th 2019.
- Focus on establishing a weekday schedule to complete all routine chores in the mornings - ongoing but review on December 31st 2019.
- Unsubscribe from all unwanted emails and social media - by December 31st 2019.
- Complete the remainder of band admin ready to hand over when band resumes in January - by December 13th 2019.
I have deliberately opted for a short list because I will be busy with Christmas music/activities but I'm confidant that I can achieve the tasks I've set and that I will benefit by completing them.