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My ideas are constantly changing as I learn. Sometimes they even change midway through writing a post.

Friday, September 7

2007 Resolutions Review

Somewhere in bloggerland, I saw a post about how a person does quarterly reviews of his personal development/growth. I like the idea.

Also, with Rosh Hoshanah (Jewish New Year) coming soon, I've been thinking about my New Year's resolutions. Not that I'm Jewish, mind you. I'm simply interested in ethics and philosophy and religious systems fit in with that. I also love making resolutions and seeing whether I've accomplished them. Of course, it's more fun when I have, but even when I don't, I learn something. Maybe to make more reasonable resolutions or to break up a resolution into smaller, more achievable goals.

Anyway, here's my status on this year's resolutions:

1. Have better relationships with family and friends.
This is hard to judge because it is a bit vague. I know things are better with some of my family members, especially my kids, because it just feels better to be with them. They seem happier overall. I feel happier around them overall.

I don't have many close friends. However, I've made a lot of progress in the area of more distant friendships- going out an meeting more people, making more of an effort to be more of a friend to more people.

I would say I'm well on my way to making things "better." I think I could still use a lot of improvement in this area, so I will probably want to continue next year.

I'll try to think of some specific, somewhat measurable things for next year... or maybe for the rest of this year.

I've been doing some study and practice on communication. I could come up with a goal like "Practice for an hour, once a week, on some of the concepts in Crucial Conversations". (Note to self, review this book!)
Oh, and I've been co-leading a study group on Nonviolent/Compassionate Communication. I think it's already helped some and we're going to be stepping up to do more practice at the next meeting. Exciting stuff!

2. Improve my health.
These are nice, measurable goals.

- Develop a habit of eating more fruits and veggies (with a goal of 5 per day).
Ok, I'm not quite up to target on this one, but I've made progress!

I eat a salad a few times a week. A year ago, I probably had a salad less than once a month. And that's pretty much the only way I have vegetables since I don't like any vegetable cooked (unless potatoes are veggies?? don't think so).

It's not quite 5 servings a day, but it is still a huge improvement. It's like, almost 5 servings a week! Looking at it mathematically, the previous standard was less than 1 serving a week. I've quadrupled that, at least! Go me!

- Continue exercising.
Err. Not doing as well on this. I've dropped Kung Fu due to knee problems and do Tai Chi once a week. Actually, I practice my Tai Chi briefly a few times a week. I'd like to be doing better/more than that, but at least I have continued to do something.

- Drop a clothing size (approx. 30 pounds.)
I don't think a clothing size is 30 pounds, but I definitely haven't made progress on this one. I think it's fairly reasonable and would happen if I also worked on the exercise goal more. Maybe I need something more specific in that area... like... 20 minutes of cardio or strength training, 3 times a week. Stretch goal: 20 minutes of cardio 3 times a week, 20 minutes of weight/strength training 3 times a week.

- Get HDL level up to 40 through supplements, diet, exercise.
Woot! I am doing very well on this one. I went from 23 on my HDL last fall to 32!! That's like... a 50% increase! Mostly I think it was through the exercise I did last fall and the Fish Oil capsules. I'm upping the dosage on that, so if I can just get myself exercising more, I'll bet I can break 40 by the end of the year!

3. Improve the aesthetics in my home. (fancy way of saying clean it up and decorate)
Well, considering the state my home was in when I planned this one, I'd say I've made enormous progress. If I do that about 5 times over, I'll have a nice place. So, good progress but LOTS more to do.

4. Improve my work ethic.
Terrible. I've definitely stalled out on this one. I'm better when it comes to home and family stuff but work, I mean my job, still needs a lot of improving.

"Extra Credit"-Study my electronics book and be able to explain the concepts in it and demonstrate them with hands on projects.
-Build a working robot.
-Write daily.
If you count emails, I do write almost daily. What I meant, though, was structured writing. This one is important to me. I really want to improve this more. I think I'll move it up to being a resolution with some subgoals.

-Improve my skill in drawing
Lower priority but likely to be fun when I get around to it.
- practice with the drawing without a model book and with portraits and occasional models.
-Improve Guitar skills.
Also important to me, but not as urgent. I did finally get a strap and a stand for my guitar as well as a chord book. I printed off some music. Now all I need is a music stand and I've got everything I need to practice. (Note to self: pick up music stand soon)

- Learn the different types of scales.
- Learn 12 new guitar chords.
- Learn 12 songs.
- Be able to know what note(s) is being played instantly - and recognize any chords I've learned.
-Write one song with a simple background.
This one is cheating a bit. I'd already written lyrics for half a song and have a tune in my head. I just need to figure out what notes I'm "hearing" and write them down and work out some good guitar to go with it. Still lots to do but something I'm optimistic about getting done in the next few years.

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