So the moon will be entering its full moon for September tomorrow night, which means I should look back at the goals that I set for the August Super Blue Moon (since it had two). This also means that we’re basically down to the last quarter of 2023.
So what goals did I make for the Pisces Super Blue Moon? They included:
Troubleshooting my weekly ‘schedule’—making notes of what blocks of periods work, what doesn’t work; am I trying to cram too much stuff in on any particular day; are there days that may be better served as ‘brainstorming’/‘learning’ days?
Spend at least fifteen to thirty minutes a day on some type of craft project
Working on both blogs—getting the second blog up and ‘running’ (having the home page & about me pages written, and having the ‘blog’ portion live with at least one post by the end of September); working on editorial calendars, and so forth.
Work through at least part of one personal/professional e-course.
So how did I do with each of them?
Troubleshooting my weekly schedule:
I had hopes that I would be done ‘troubleshooting’ my weekly schedule this week and could commit to a schedule come October. Well—what I’ve found is that my evening block is best spent doing crafts and relaxing, and I’d rather flip and move around times for doing chores and cooking instead of blocking those off in the late afternoon.
I also think that on Wednesdays, I will be dedicating more time to brainstorming and/or e-courses in addition to the chores for the day. I also need to get better at actually doing things on the weekends. Usually I’ve managed to get about sixty percent of things I want done during the week done…goal for the last quarter is to get that percentage up to eighty percent.
Spending at least fifteen minutes to a half hour on crafts:
I’m starting to spend more time in the evenings working on my large needlepoint project (and hopefully will have it done by Thanksgiving weekend if not by Halloween). One thing I’d realized over the past week, is that unless I’m doing crafts (and taking progress photos) there isn’t a lot of new photographs to share (since I was going to try to do a 365-day photography challenge). But that is something again to work on during the fourth quarter of the year.
Working on both blogs:
Well, I have the second blog/website (the science/health/medical) up and ‘running’. Basically other than the blog and portfolio pages, the rest are all visible. I had planned on getting a blog post up last week, but stuff happened (we unexpectedly lost one of our cats) and that blog post never happened. But it is on the schedule for October.
I have also posted at least four times to this blog, while I had a bigger goal in mind (say weekly)—I’ll take being at least consistent in being sporadic in posting. Again, becoming more consistent is on the schedule for October.
Working through another e-course:
I worked through/watched ‘The Ten Steps for Getting Your Point Across in Writing’ on Udemy. The main thing I got from this course—I don’t spend enough time on the planning and editing stages of writing. That will change (especially for the science/health/medical site) moving forward.
Progress is being made in terms of both time and project management. The fourth goal (which was the only ‘yes/no’ in terms of total completion) was completed, and progress on the other three were made. Scheduling (or time blocking) is the aspect of time/project management that I need to get better at during the next few months.
I know that I switch things up at the last minute because I feel I will either get bored or not get the task completed to my ‘liking’ (aka fear of failure and my inner critic is rearing it’s ugly head again). How will I work with my inner critic? Well, I could offer it an unlimited supply of cookies and brownies…which means focusing more on baking than content creation. So—maybe (at least every so often). Basically, I need to dedicate a good chunk of time to the planning stage of projects (outlines, determining what style(s) of communication I can get out of said outline; and then making (and sticking) with a reasonable deadline schedule). This means that to begin with I may only have a blog post monthly on the new site, and once I get enough outlines/mind maps made it could move to biweekly, and then weekly.
It is better to start at a slow jog, than to try to sprint my way to a ‘finish’ line that may or may not be the one for me.
The two phrases I need to keep in mind as I move forward with various endeavors: ‘progress over perfection’ and ‘done is better than perfect, because perfect never gets done’.
As the moon moves into Aries, it is time to take a look at things and figure out where I’ve been stalling in goals…and that is the subject of the next Full Moon Goals post.
So, yesterday, the moon entered the first full moon cycle of August (August 1st)—and is moving through the Aquarius constellation…and I’m a day late in posting.
This marks the first time back at doing goals via the moon since the beginning of the year. I (unintentionally) took a six month break due to various family issues (possible additional post this weekend).
As the moon makes it’s first transition through Aquarius—there are twenty-nine days left in the month, and then four months afterwards left in 2023…and I’m so ready to be done with this year (and actually the decade).
The moon is going to be transitioning through Aquarius, and if one looks at the book “Moonology: working with the magic of lunar cycles” by Yasmin Boland there are a series of questions that one reflect on during the next few days:
Have I been pragmatic to the point of losing the romance of life?
Have I been living too much in my head and not enough in my heart?
Have I been trying to do things my way, just for the sake of it?
Have I been trying to hard to befriend people, and for the wrong reasons?
Have I allowed myself to move forward this month?
So if I were to number the above questions 1-5, my answers would be as followed:
According to vocabulary.com a pragmatic person is someone who is sensible, grounded, and practical. I could (and have) answered the question in terms of relationships…where I’ve stated that I’m not in the mood to try to mingle and date—I’m actually quite content being a single female. In terms of life in general—I have been striving to be more mindful in my days—looking for the various silver linings each day.
I ended up totally burnt out on life due to being overly analytical and trying to make a career for myself in research…I’m good at research—but learned that I do best when I can vary what I’m researching and able to constantly challenge myself. Therefore I’m trying to listen to my inner voice/heart more often and focus on things that make me feel good, energized, and rejuvenated. It also means looking for things that I enjoy doing in terms of fitness, and foods that I actually enjoy eating in terms of nutrition. I’m also focusing on daily craft time as well.
No two paths are the same…even when borrowing ideas from someone—you usually inject a little bit of yourself into the project, making it your own. Last year I stated that I was starting to get serious about freelance/remote/contract work in science/health comms—and I am, now that the huge drawn-out family medical drama came to an end in May (still working on finding my new normal though)…so I will probably be implementing ideas from various sources, but putting my own spin on them. So—it will be a mix of ‘my way’ and ‘help from others’.
I haven’t been very active in terms of networking the past seven or eight months—therefore I don’t think I’ve been trying to befriend people for the wrong reasons. Networking and connecting (or following) is about learning about others, finding common ground, and figuring out how I can be of service to others. Hopefully over the next few months, I start (again) at pushing myself out of my comfort zone and set up more virtual water/coffee chats.
Well, since this particular full moon falls at the beginning of the month—I can safely say that so far, no I haven’t pushed myself forward during the month of August. In regards to last month—I’d pushed myself slightly…and I will be working at pushing myself a little more each month as I strive to make progress on numerous fronts.
Aquarius is also moving through my 4th house or my home and family zone. This is the time when one should try to find a balance between one’s personal life and one’s career.
The past year has been anything but smooth. Early August 2022 saw the start of a family medial issue that lasted until May of this year…an ending of which I’m still struggling through to find my new normal. The SARS-CoV2 virus is still running around, and it’s thought that this coming winter is going to be a bad one in terms of the flu, RSV, and SARS-CoV2—meaning I’ll probably be back to self-isolating and obsessively washing my hands.
I’m going to be focusing on self-compassion this month, as I realize that I’ll probably try to over-plan what I want to get accomplished during the two period between the full and new moons (or the four weeks between the two August full moon periods). I’m going to be striving for harmony more than balance…
My open-ended (in terms of time) goal for the Aquarius full moon is working on my time and project management skills. This will be done by finding time each day for crafts, intentional movement, and making progress on various projects—and knowing that I did my best each day.
While that is a totally ‘open-ended’ goal, some specific mini-goals are:
Finish reading: It’s Okay that You’re Not Okay by Megan Devine & Oracle Cards 101 by Sunny Johnson
Unplug for at least 90% of one (or more) weekends (knowing that I will possibly give in and check social media on the phone)..
Start creating content for both blogs and various other social media sites as well.
Continue working on my very large abstract needlepoint project
As I move forward with my career transition, I know that some (probably most) companies won’t like the idea of an employee building a freelance business on the side…though I’m sure that it is more common than I think…remote work starting out may be the way to go—though I’m not sure how I feel about someone dictating my daily schedule again…therefore I do need to put a lot of time and focus in to developing the two sites in regards to freelance work.
This blog/website is going to be dedicated to crafts, photography, travel, reading, and personal/professional growth. The second blog/website is going to be dedicated more to science/health communications (possibly adding in medical comms again within a year or two—need to move past the trauma of this year a little more).
Time and project management are always going to be works in progress (especially when one is tired, bored, or any other potentially ‘negative’ emotion)…but baby steps (even a shuffle back and forth) are still progress—as long as you’re moving forward.
So, I’ll leave you with the reminder that perfection is a myth, and inquire what are some of your favorite time and project management tools or tricks?
So, we’re in December…that means there are only 31 days, roughly four and half weeks, or 744 hours left in 2022. That means, I now really need to get serious about planning out things for 2023…because it will be here before we know it (or are possibly willing to accept it).
I’m still feeling massively tired and burnt out on life, and while I would love for the year (and decade) to be over—I’m also not ready for the good-byes that will go along with them.
I’d hoped that November would be a little mellower than the past three months—and it was, and at the same time it wasn’t; if possible it was an even tie for September in terms of being a mess.
Still dealing with the ongoing family medical issue—and the outcome is still up in the air. Then there is the fun of elderly animals…probably having to put one cat and dog down within the next few months (cat due to health issues, that I currently can’t afford to treat; and the dog due to old age and pain).
The only cool thing I can say about the news is Mauna Loa erupting this week. It’s been well over a decade since I’ve been to the big island of Hawai’i—and when I went, I only visited Kilauea (since it was within the main part of the Volcano National Park).
While I wouldn’t want to be living on a island with an active volcano—I think it’d be cool to see it erupt (from a safe distance)—cause while I did see Kilauea erupt—it wasn’t as cool looking as pictures have been lately for Mauna Loa or even when Kilauea erupted a few years ago.
Still staying off the news for the most part—mainly because of my current mental health state. Though if everyone would just grab a snickers bar and take like a three-month timeout, I think that would help things settle down.
By this time next year, I won’t be surprised if I’m diagnosed with moderate cases of depression, anxiety, and PTSD.
Elections were earlier this month, and hopefully Democrats can hold their slim majority in the senate, and knock heads together in the house to get things done. Sorry if that seems ‘violent’—I’m tired of seeing mass shootings in the news, and basic human rights being attacked basically every damn day.
In terms of the total number of cases of the virus within the US, when I published ‘October in Review’ on November 1st, I noted that we had reached a little over 99.3 million cases and now as of December 1st —we have reached just a little over 100.6 million cases (an increase of a little over 1.3 million cases). So, numbers are staying ‘steady’—though I’d like to see the number actually start going down again. But there are the various omicron subs-strains running amok.
So—please, wear a mask, wash your hands, practice social distancing, and get boosted when needed.
I finally got around to getting my booster shot this past month—and other than a sore arm (for about four days), I didn’t have any other side effect of getting the booster. Flu shot is on semi-hold, only because it looks like I potentially have to schedule a doctor’s appointment to get it—and I don’t want to do that right now.
Still trying to keep the mental health on an even keel—therefore, I’m still trying to lean more into my strengths and values: knowledge, creativity, curiosity, spirituality, evolution/transformation (values), learner, intellection, input, achiever, and deliberative (strengths).
So before setting goals for December, its time to look back at the goals I set for November and see how I did with each of them. The goals for November included:
At least one partial walk at Boomer Lake, and at least five-to-ten minutes of intentional movement each day
Finishing at least one of the many non-fiction books that I’ve started
Read at least two-to-four fiction books
Commit to the no spend days/no spend week/limited spending challenge (aiming for at least 22 days)
Work through at least part of one personal/professional development e-course
Getting the second blog up and running
Writing, writing, and writing
So how did I do with each of them?
I fell short of my minimum step goal of 120,000 steps. I managed to get 116,503 steps this past month. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts throughout the years—I’m an extremely fair weather person, so in order to be outside doing some type of workout I need it to be ‘just right’. We’re heading into winter, though with climate change, the temperatures have been doing a yoyo the past few weeks.
At least one partial walk at Boomer Lake, and at least five-to-ten minutes of intentional movement each day:
There was no walk at Boomer Lake during November. The reason—having to play ‘phone tag’ with medical staff in regards to the on-going family medical issue. I probably could have done a brief walk up there—but I did other chores instead.
I know I’ve probably moved around at least five minutes a day—but I have yet to write down what the intentional movements have been. (Need to get better at this)
Finish at least one non-fiction book:
I finally managed to finish reading INNERCISE: The New Science to Unlock Your Brain’s Hidden Power by John Assaraf. I just need to go back and do some of the exercises within the book (especially those that revolve around setting goals, and putting together routines).
Read at least two-to-four fiction books:
There were six new fiction books read during November, and six re-reads:
The new books:
Someone to Hold (Wild Widows #2) by Marie Force
Always Mine (Honey Mountain #1) by Laura Pavlov
Ever Mine (Honey Mountain #2) by Laura Pavlov
Make You Mine (Honey Mountain #3) by Laura Pavlov
Simply Mine (Honey Mountain #4) by Laura Pavlov
The Path to You (Wilder Brothers #3) by Carrie Ann Ryan
The re-reads included:
Alpha Turned by K.B. Alan
Protect & Defend by Francesca Hawley
Hot & Badgered (Honey Badger Chronicles #1) by Shelly Laurenston
In a Badgered Way (Honey Badger Chronicles #2) by Shelly Laurenston
Badger to the Bone (Honey Badger Chronicles #3) by Shelly Laurenston
Breaking Badger (Honey Badger Chronicles #4) by Shelly Laurenston
No spend challenges:
Well, I did okay with the no spend challenge—managed 17 days (so a little over half the month)…spending money unfortunately is my coping mechanism for stressful situations (and the past several months has been a roller coaster of stress)…but I’m going to work on improving this both in December and then in 2023.
Time outdoors is again becoming limited to basically evenings (and when I need to fill bird feeders) due to it being winter.
Meditation and sitting quietly at night (or actually anytime during the day) is something I’ve been fairly good at doing.
I’ve also been on top of doing daily oracle card drawings (I think there may have been one day I didn’t—but I’d done a double the day before), and doing daily gratitude journal entries.
I finished the one abstract science cross-stitch project, and had decided to use buttons to tie off the fabric in the back.
I’m currently working on a second abstract cross-stitch project and should be done with that one hopefully before the end of the year.
Working through part of a personal/professional e-course:
I’ve started watching the e-course: Master Business Writing & Editing on Udemy. I’ve watched the first three videos (so about 15 minutes of the three hour course). It looks to be a good course—so, aiming to finish this plus the 15 errors in scientific writing & how to fix them (an two hour course) during December.
Getting the second blog/website up and running:
One of the bigger goals for December
Writing, writing, and writing:
While I’ve gotten quite a bit of writing done during November (kept up with the three ‘series’ that I do on LinkedIn each week; plus the various posts on the creative blog), there is room for improvement.
I know that I need to get the second blog up and running—plus I need to decide on the various social media platforms for each blog, and get a tentative content calendar planned and actually stick with it…goal for December and 2023.
So, other than not getting any work done on the new blog/website—I managed a little on all other goals (while totally meeting at least the reading goals). As I’d mentioned in my #thoughtfulthursday post on LinkedIn today—I’ve been allowing myself to fall into the pits of ‘fear of failure’ and ‘fear of opinions of others’ this year—which has sidetracked, and sidelined my progress on numerous fronts.
Taking today out of the equation—there are thirty days left in the month. I know that I probably won’t be super productive this month (holidays and the on-going family medical drama), but I need to start setting things up so that I can hit the ground running in the New Year.
That means measuring things in the bedroom and rearranging furniture—to hopefully create an ‘office’ space that I actually feel comfortable working in, in addition to creating a portable working space in the living/dining room area (elderly dog likes to be in the same room—and has trouble navigating areas that lack area rugs).
It means getting in the different bullet journals and getting the tracking sheets set up for at least the first several months (besides the ones I did for 2022, introduce some new ones for 2023).
It will mean actually taking the time each day (morning and night) to plan and then reflect on how I did each day. It will also mean creating content calendars and trying to stick with them.
I’ll be spending some time during the next month or so deciding on what other social media channels I want to be active on for each blog…some might overlap (Instagram, Medium, and possibly having a Facebook page for each of them), but others will be specific for one or the other.
Therefore, I’ll still be working on improving my time and project management skills as well throughout the month of December.
The goals then for December will include:
Partial walk at Boomer Lake, and intentional movements daily
Work through at least one module of a personal/professional development course
Writing, writing, and writing
Set up the ‘master’ goal list for 2023; and start the ‘master’ blueprint plan for 2023-2028
The December goals are basically the same as what I’ve set for September, October, and November—with the addition of setting up the ‘master’ goals or plan for 2023 to 2028. What I need to do in terms of that ‘goal’ is start with the five year goals, and work my way backwards. That way hopefully each year I’ll be working towards those ‘larger’ and loftier goals.
As I mentioned the only goal that I didn’t really touch was getting the second blog/website up and running. I have an idea of what I want to write for my about me page (helps that I got my functional resume finished), and hopefully will have at least one blog post in addition to various pages ‘live’ by New Years Eve.
All I can try to do is devise a schedule/plan that will hopefully be able to bear the brunt of whatever happens during 2023…that will be a large focus this coming month.
Becoming more consistent will really let me lean into my strengths and values: learning/knowledge, creativity, curiosity, spirituality, evolution/growth, and intellection.
In addition—they all give me great practice at time and project management as I’m aiming for at least 85% overall completion (I’m fully acknowledging that I may not hit the step goal, and that I may also not have that much time outside—but I can work towards all the other ones).
Time/project management goes hand in hand with consistency and productivity. I’m going to be making more use of airtable (for content/project management—it’s a calendar and spreadsheet in one space), an old fashion timer, and pen/paper to manage my time and projects.
Curious to know what is your favorite time, project, or productivity tracker/manager?
So the moon entered the Sagittarius constellation yesterday, marking the eleventh new moon for 2022. That means there is a week left in November (today is Thanksgiving), and then it’s December…and then 2023.
The SARS-CoV2 virus isn’t going to be going away…it is here to stay (unfortunately)—but there are vaccines, and booster shots—so folks, go get your vaccine (or booster), try to continue practicing social distancing where you can—and wear a damn mask in the store, it’s also flu season.
So what are some of the things that one can do during the time of Sagittarius new moon?
Looking at the book “Moonology: working with the magic of lunar cycles” by Yasmin Boland, you can:
Search for meaning
Well, I’m slowly starting to research/plan a trip for sometime in either mid-to-late 2023 or 2024. Since the SARS-CoV2 virus isn’t going away—I’ll just wear my mask when traveling…
In terms of ‘searching for meaning’—I’m viewing that as figuring out what I want to be doing with my life and where I would like to be in say fifteen to twenty years. This is a slow work in progress…hopefully making a little headway this coming week.
I’m starting to ‘study’ again—I have numerous different e-courses that I need to be working through. I just need to buy a couple of notebooks—I’m ‘old-fashion’ and I learn better when I actually writing things down.
With the moon entering into Sagittarius, this is also my second house or the “cash, property, and values” zone. I’m totally not in the holiday mood this year—I mean today is ‘turkey’ day, and then we’re just over a month from Christmas…and I’m in a totally bah-humbug type of mood currently.
This year has currently been a year of ‘whiplash’ with various things going on—and I’m heading back towards burnout. I’m realizing this and will be putting together a plan to hopefully stop the backwards slide in its ‘tracks’.
One thing I’m aiming for in 2023—starting to live a much more minimalistic life. I have three boxes of shirts (so far) that I need to donate, numerous DVDs to sell back, and crafts to create/gift/sell. Anyway, back to the second house—the cash, property, and value zone.
So some of the things that you can do during this time include (again, according to “Moonology: working with the magic of the lunar cycles”):
Start a savings account
Pay your bills, taxes, debt, etc
Hire an accountant if it’s all too much
Showcase your talents
Get a neck and shoulder massage
Invest in an expensive neck cream
My savings account is there—just not as ‘large’ as I would like (but hey—I’ve been on a reboot break for the past few years and surviving off of it), and I’m working on getting the bills/debt paid off. There is still no reason to hire an accountant—since I’m still currently unemployed.
In terms of ‘showcasing’ my talents—I’m in the process of starting the second blog/website (dedicated to science/medical/health education/communications), in addition to brainstorming ideas on how to showcase the various crafts that I’ve been working on as well.
Develop a ‘fluid’ daily/weekly/monthly schedule for getting various things done
Reflect on 2022 (to-date), and determine what went well, what didn’t go so well, and start planning for 2023 (and beyond)
Put in the order for the numerous journals and notebooks needed for 2023
Finish setting up the dedicated work station, craft station, and semi-dedicated meditation area in the bedroom
While I managed to accomplish numerous goals over the past few months—I also realize that my inner critic/imposter syndrome has also derailed me several times as well (not to mention life in general)…but I need to just keep reminding myself: ‘progress over perfection’. In addition to not taking to heart the negative opinions of others.
While 2022 hasn’t been going the way I wanted, hopefully the last week of November will be mellower than the previous months have been.
What are you doing to ensure that 2023 starts on the right foot?
So the moon will be entering its next full moon cycle for the year probably tonight (at least for me). This means that we’re not quite a third of the way through October—but time does seem to be going a little quicker. I’m hoping that the last quarter of the year goes a little smoother…but I’m also not going to hold my breath on it either.
So what are some of the questions we can reflect on during this time?
Have I been hotheaded, selfish, or argumentative this month?
Have I been going too fast or been impulsive this month?
Have I been brash, blunt, or too competitive?
Have I ignored other people’s finer sensibilities?
Have I had enough fun?
So before answering the questions, I do need to point out that it is the beginning of the month, so I actually going to answer these questions based on 1) how I want to behave during the coming month, but also 2) how I behaved during the past couple of weeks. So as usually I’m going to number the questions 1 to 5 as I answer them.
I would have to say no—I haven’t been hotheaded, selfish or argumentative this month (a couple months ago—yes I was slightly argumentative then). We’re still dealing with a family medical crisis that may or may not resolve the way we’d like it to—so I could be considered semi-selfish in just wanting the whole ordeal over one way or another.
Considering the month I’m currently having and the past two months, I don’t think I’ve been overly impulsive this month nor do I think I’ve been going too fast (possibly going a tad too slow). I know what I need to do—but currently the other issue is taking majority of my concentration and I’m working on ensuring that I don’t impulsively spend too much money.
No, I haven’t been brash, blunt or too competitive—this month. I was slightly brash and blunt a month or so ago—but that particular circumstance called for me being brash and blunt (and I’m still not going to apologize for it either). While I understand the need for competition (to ensure that the best person is hired)—I truthfully think that there probably is more than enough work for everyone who wants it—so I’m only going to try to be competitive with myself—and only the person I was yesterday.
Well I would say this year it would depend on the situation and the people involved. While I do try to empathize with others—I’m also starting to draw my boundaries and stating what I will and won’t do in particular situations. I also realize that sometimes things can get a little tense and sometimes conversations may need to be put on hold.
What is this word fun? While there are hopes that we’re moving from a ‘pandemic’ to an ‘epidemic’—we’re still stuck dealing with the damn SARS-CoV2 virus, and considering the past nine weeks (and counting)—I really haven’t had much fun, and am still working on ways of adding ‘enjoyment’ into my day-to-day routine.
Aries is moves through my sixth house (or my daily work and health zone). This house is where we can sit and reflect on who we are (both in terms of professional/work and personal/health) and decide to work on those aspects that we don’t like.
For the past two years I’d made various ‘commitments’ such as pushing play daily on streaming workouts or committing to intentional movements each day. Well, I canceled my Beachbody-on-demand (and technically my Beachbody) subscriptions this past month—for whatever reason, I’d prefer to pop in a DVD than trying to log into the website…the DVD player relies on power (and not being overly dusty), while streaming workout relies on power plus a good internet connection and the website not being down.
Therefore I’m still in the process of trying to develop a good mix of things I like to do (weight lifting, walking, hiking, and so forth) and making a ‘schedule’ that I can more or less stick with—because life has been throwing more lemons and limes at me than I can use for making various drinks and dishes.
I have a good idea of what I’m wanting to do career wise—it’s a matter now of making a schedule that will work with everything that is going on in life right now—plus I’m still dealing with the feeling of burnout (but not just in terms of career—currently its in terms of everything).
Since I’m pretty sure that this Aries full moon is going to be a very chaotic time, I’m going to limit the number of goals that I’m going to be setting. The goals for the Aries full moon will include:
Write out a list of things I’d enjoy doing in terms of intentional movement (weight lifting, walking, cardio, yoga, and so forth)—and try to devise a schedule.
Have at least two mini-book reviews written and posted on various sites
Work through at least part of a personal/professional development course
Continue reading (and possibly finishing) at least one non-fiction book that I’ve already started.
The motto for this quarter is ‘Progress over Perfection’
Four goals for the Aries full moon–and hopefully four goals that will get accomplished. I know that I have an extra one or two listed above–those are bonus goals…I’m trying to just remember to take things a day at a time, and even then–remember to take things an hour at a time, and if need be a minute at a time.
What personal/professional goal are you working towards this quarter?
So, yesterday was my birthday—and I’m now technically a full year into my fourth decade (even though I’ve kiddingly said that I’m celebrating my 39th birthday for the third time).
Last year I did a post shortly after my birthday on trying to answer the question of which hobbies, passions, and interests fall under the jack-of-all-trades umbrella, and which fall under the specialist umbrella. That posts evolved from a previous post (‘self-reflection, planning, and yet more self-reflection’).
I’d stated then that my two biggest struggles were imposter syndrome and being stuck in the ‘academic’ mindset of career progression (though industry does have clear career progressions—my ‘problem’ has been not knowing which direction to go in).
Recently I’ve been coming back to the possibility of freelance/remote/contract work where I could be doing writing, data analysis, project, and/or product management in addition to writing/blogging on personal/professional development topics as well.
The main reason why I’m leaning in that direction—we’re still in the middle of the pandemic, and I feel more comfortable with going in a direction that is semi-location independent and to a degree company-independent as well.
While at the same time, I want to create a ‘niche’ that will allow me to flow between topics that I feel fall into either the ‘jack-of-all-trades’ category or the ‘specialist’ category. In addition to allowing me to make use of my strengths: learner, intellection, input, achiever, and deliberative/ideation/arranger.
So how am I going to do this?
Well, I’ve come up with three broad areas that will be added to the two ‘fun’ niches that I already have ‘pages/tabs’ for on the blog/website.
The three broad areas that I’m going to be adding will be:
Health and Wellness
Science Education and Communications (abbreviated Science Ed and Coms)
Personal Development (may also include some aspects of professional development as well)
Since each area is extremely broad, I’ll be focusing on certain subtopics within each area (though the science education and communication may remain some broad—only because I find almost all science to be interesting). What those subtopics are–I’m still working on those lists, but my goal is to have three-to-five subtopics per broad area.
They will also have their own ‘tab’ on the website (serving as individual ‘portfolios’), and I’ve decided that the Health/Wellness tab is going to be the ‘renamed/worked’ Fitness tab; Science Ed and Coms will be the ‘renamed/worked’ All Things Science tab; and Personal Development will be the ‘renamed/worked’ Everything Else Bucket List tab.
The two ‘fun’ niches that I will be keeping on the blog (and that already have their own tabs/pages) will be travel and photography (which I’m going to be combining with the birds tab).
Having these five ‘niches’ or areas will allow me the flexibility I need to stay focused, productive, and happy. Science education and communication may also branch out to include social sciences and humanities at some point (as I also enjoy those topics as well).
Other crafts (such as cross-stitching, jewelry design/creation, knitting, and others) may show up from time to time under the personal development tab or possibly just as individual blog posts.
Looking back over the past year, I’ve realized that I have made progress in numerous areas (even if it has been minuscule), and as I continue forward on this freelance/remote/contract path I know that I will continue to improve in those areas. That being said, I’m still going to be working on the following areas:
Time and project management (I have numerous writing projects in the pipeline, but haven’t really gotten anywhere with any of them)
Brainstorming, researching, writing, editing, and publishing–on a schedule
Publishing my writing (in more places than just the blog and LinkedIn)
Different types of writing (though I’m actually doing this a little with the volunteer medical content writing position):
Reworking the blog/website to serve as one of my ‘portfolios’ (with another being my LinkedIn account) in terms of the different areas/niches I want to branch out into
So, I have the overall plan of trying to go freelance/remote/contract for writing/data analysis/project and/or product management. Now it is time to rework the blog/website (slowly, since I have had it going for a couple of years now), and then figure out the other little nuts and bolts of starting my own business.
So, for my next revolution around the sun–I’m going to focus on stepping out of my comfort zone more, write more, create more, and if the pandemic every gets under control–perhaps even travel more.
Well we’re almost through the first quarter of the year. Tomorrow is both Monday and the start of April–which means April Fool’s Day. I think there is a universal joke being played on us–that is almost an unfair way of starting the week. But since the quarter is almost over, it’s time to do a quick check-in on life via the Level 10 criteria.
So there has been little change in basically all areas–either things stayed steady or they went up or down a little. Things almost balanced out in terms of what when up and down–though I think I’m +0.5 in the positive direction in terms of changes.
I still don’t have much of a social life–and currently I’m perfectly fine with that. I know that it could help in terms of networking–but at the end of a busy day at work or a busy week–I don’t want to go back out and deal with interacting with people. So right now most networking is done on-line. I’m planning on doing in-person/live networking, but that will be in a few months (once I have a little more vacation time earned) and I can do a duel networking/mental health break.
I’m hoping to get more things done in terms of my job transition plan, and moving towards getting an industry position (more on this later), and I’m also probably going to be starting a new beachbody program tomorrow (as long as the wireless and internet behave in the evenings–streaming workouts aren’t fun if they keep crashing in the middle). So what are some of my 2nd quarter goals for April through June:
Getting in touch with friends and family via email/social media
Continue reading different personal development books and doing different short challenges (more on this later).
Continuing to try to mediate daily and do my daily tarot/oracle card readings
Different savings challenges
Work on my industry transition plan and network
Lunch with friends on the weekends
More time for crafts
Donate clothes (mainly t-shirts) at the end of the 333 challenge
Repack boxes in storage unit (make room for other boxes from home).
Hopefully do Transformation 20 (new ShawnT workout from Beachbody) and then the hybrid Transformation 20/LIIFT4 program.
I almost consider the first part of the year as still a “planning” period. Now that we’re well into the year–it’s time to get stuff done. More lists will be made (and possibly shared), so that things can be checked off and as a way to make sure that I’m actually moving forward and not just spinning in circles.
So the moon will be heading into the Pisces constellation today, and before we know it we’ll be hitting the spring equinox, and then somehow March will be over. But it isn’t over yet (and I know I’m being slightly melodramatic—but it’s a day off of work due to winter weather J).
Also during this time there are planets realigning with each
other, so there are some questions we can ask ourselves (questions are coming
from Yasmin Boland’s email list):
Where do I need a major change in my life—am I willing to
release the old to usher in a new way of life?
I need a
major change in terms of my career. My current job is a dead end position—there
is no room for advancement and really no room to grow (yes I can learn to run
some more instruments—but that is about it) and the pay isn’t that great
either. Therefore I also need a major change in terms of where I’m living, as
there isn’t that much biotech in Oklahoma.
Am I feeling inspired? And if not, what am I going to do
I am trying
to tap into daily inspiration (mainly through journaling and just jotting down
different things that come to mind). I am inspired to make major changes in my
life, but at the same time I know that I have to go slow or I could end up
having a complete and total meltdown (due to anxiety and stress).
Am I willing to work hard to make my dreams come true?
willing to work hard to make the transition to industry. I know what I should
be focusing on in terms of what I need to be doing—I just need to write out on paper,
and make lists so that I have something to check off, that I’ve done.
So if we look at “Moonology: Working with the Magic of Lunar
Cycles” by Yasmin Boland, there are again several things that one can do during
(read tarot, oracle, or archangel cards)
to the universe.
Well before I can start making lists of things, I also need
to check to see what zone/house this Pisces new moon is moving into as well.
This new moon is moving through my fifth house (also know as my fun zone). The
basic message is to remember that life is a game (and one that we shouldn’t
take seriously all the time [some of the time yes, we should take it
seriously—but not all of it).
So if one looks back to the Moonology book, there are
several suggestions for things that one can do during this time:
Take up belly
Make a toy
for a child (your own or someone else’s)
lover on an adventure.
short story; paint a picture—anything that feels creative.
something that typifies your idea of fun
So there are some things on the above list that right now
just aren’t in the cards (namely having a romantic relationship—I’m still
trying to figure out my life, and I don’t need to add any more complications to
it currently). The messages from Pisces and the fifth house are also resonating
with one of the books that I’m currently reading: “Choose the life you want:
the mindful way to happiness” by Tal Ben-Shahar (and I’ll post a book review
once I’m done).
But I am trying to remember that the life isn’t suppose to
be all work and no play/enjoyment—but at times the semi-workaholic in me comes
out and I forget about play/enjoyment for awhile before I put the breaks on and
try to go back the other way.
So if I had to make a small list of things to try to focus
on during the Pisces new moon they would be:
working on the transition plan—namely making sure that my linkedin page is
good, and continue networking and adding value (plus start really trying to
narrow down the companies and locations).
with my daily oracle card readings
Work on my
afghan or start making some jewelry
reading personal and professional development books.
So the moon is now going to be entering the Aquarius
constellation, and the year is officially off and running. Somehow January has
come and gone (though it seemed like a long month at times, it also seemed
incredibly short as well). So the new moon is happening either on the 3rd
or 4th of February (depending on where you live in the world).
Looking at “Moonology: Working with the Magic of Lunar
Cycles” by Yasmin Boland, there are again several things that one can do during
from things that are no longer serving us.
Be true to
Then I turn to see what zone (or house) the moon is moving
into in regards to everything. Remember there are basically three ways to determine
which house/zone the moon is in for any new/full moon: your star sign, your
rising sign, and your moon sign. I usually go with my rising sign, which is
So this means that the moon is entering into my fourth
house, or the home and family zone. So this can also be a time when one can
spend cleaning (getting rid of things), possibly moving, and spending more time
with family. So there are several suggestions from “Moonology” on what one can
do during this time:
your photo albums/digital photo files.
redecorate so you’re more comfortable at home.
home and/or change locations, or even countries.
grandparents about your family’s history.
So looking at the above list—I’d probably have to state that
I don’t hug my parents all that often (we’re not the hugging type of family),
and I don’t invite friends over often (mainly because everyone is busy and it’s
easier to meet up somewhere else). Also it is now impossible to ask my
grandparents about my family history as they are all deceased (though my
grandfather did write a fairly detailed history probably five years or so
before he passed away); I do have the letter he wrote me in high school, when I
inquired about his memories of the Great Depression & serving in WWII (I
might post that one of these days), and I think I also have my grandmother’s
letter about growing up in the Great Depression in my storage unit). I do try
to sort my digital pictures (the photo albums will have to wait until I move
& I can get to them again).
So if I were to make a small list of things to try to get
done this month in regards to both my fourth house (home & family) and also
personal/professional development, the list will include:
back DVDs via decluttr (nice way to make a little bit of money).
working on my transition plan (getting my value list down to say five to seven,
and then the daily steps that I should be taking to meet my goals).
my closet & the overflowing amount of clothes (maybe set up an ebay account
and sell some on there?)
I also have the goals that I’ve set for February, that
compliment these goals but also are slightly different as well.
So we’re off and running into 2019. January has come and
gone. The weather has been interesting this month—within the first four days
there was a snow/ice storm (did get out of work a little early, and then the
next day started a little later)—so can’t wait to see how the weather is going
to behave for the rest of the year.
So I decided that to start the year, I was going to start a
little slower in terms of goals (not have quite as many as I’d been having) to
see if I could get at least 80% on each of them. So what did my goals for
At least 434,000 steps (this will be breaking down to the
minimum of 14K/day), so that I can be on track for reaching 5 million steps
again by New Year’s Eve.
Starting to interact more on Linkedin.
Restarting the photography challenge (may or may not be same
picture on the blog and other social pages).
Working through different e-courses and on the transition
plan (making notes and posting updates on the blog).
Working on different science posts for the blog.
Reading (or finishing) at least 3 non-fiction books (aiming
to read at least 10% of a book a day—lovely thing with the kindle as it tells
you the % of the book you’ve read; would make it approximately 3 new books a
Workout daily (either restart a beachbody program or start a
hybrid program), alternating resistance training with cardio (and hopefully a
walk on the weekend along with yoga).
Figure out how to ensure that I’m having my shakeology daily.
So how did I do with each of them?
goal of 434,000: I managed to surpass the step goal this month. I got in
477,549 steps (and this was with four days being below average; three of which
were below 5K). A little closer to reaching 500K in a month, but still a little
short. But I’m on track for both the yearly goal (of 5 million) and my 1001-day
goal (of either 14,014,000 or 19,124,000 steps).
more on Linkedin: This one is a little slow going. I’m liking posts, and
sharing posts every so often, but I have yet to write an post or leave a
detailed comment on someone’s post.
the photography challenge: This one has been difficult, mainly due to my cell
phone acting up (during the week, that is usually how I take my pictures). So
the challenge got restarted again on the 7th (though I did post on
the 1st, and then several pictures over the weekend of the 5th
& 6th to try to make up for not having a daily picture posted
from the 2nd to the 4th).
I restarted the challenge again this week
(starting on the 28th), and did a double post on 30th
(since I had trouble trying to load any of the pages on the blog on the 29th).
So we shall see how long I make it this year.
through the different e-courses and on the transition plan: I’ve managed to
work through one e-course (which was more of a refresher on job searching), and
did one or two little linkedin “courses”. In terms of my transition plan, I’ve
come up with several things that I’d like to avoid doing, slowly figuring out
my “professional lifestyle” and I have an idea about which biotech hubs I’d be
willing to move to for a job.
on different science posts: I’m slowly working on this, as I’ve realized what
my two major hang-ups are: 1) trying to draw what I want to relate (structures
of DNA & RNA for example), and then 2) making sure that I’m not using a
huge amount of scientific jargon. I want to write scientific posts that can be
understood by someone who doesn’t have the scientific background.
(or finishing) at least 3 non-fiction books: So I managed to finish reading the
following books, and have also decided to color code them differently in my
master list to differentiate between the books that I finished last year (in
red) and the ones I will have finished this year (in green); though I also have
one in purple (this is more of a reference book):
Move Your Æ Ash: Know, Grow, & Show Your Career Value by
Anti Goals: Find Success by Knowing what to avoid by Kevin
Power Up Your Self Talk: 6 Simple Habits to Stop Beating
Yourself Up and Reclaim Your Life by Michal Stawicki
Anti-Debt: A guide to personal finance, getting out debt and
building a money plan for our life by Kevin Wagonfoot
Though I’ve only written one book review so far: Anti-Goals:
Find Success by Knowing What to Avoid by Kevin Wagonfoot
workout: I’ve managed to at least get my steps in 27 out of 31 days (which
means that my fitbit registered at least 25 minutes of walking). I’ve also done
numerous workouts—it may not have been daily though. So this is still something
I’m going to be working on (see my other post on trying to finish at least 250
different Beachbody workouts).
Trying to figure out the best way to have my shakeology daily. This has been a total washout—I haven’t had shakeology at all this month. I’m considering cancelling my supplements for shakeology (as I have about 2 months worth to still go through). Mornings right now are too chilly for having a shake before leaving the house, and I’ve gotten spoiled having it mixed with almond milk instead of water and blended (instead shaken in a cup). So yeah—I’m still trying to figure out the best way of having my daily dose of shakeology.
So I think I’m off to a good start this year (at least in
terms of certain things). There are always going to be bumps or roadblocks in
the road, and I just need to go over them or figure out a way around them. So
now it’s time to try to set some goals for the next twenty-eight days in
February goals will include:
At least 392,000 steps (again this breaks down to at least
14K/day; and will keep me on track for my other step goals).
Continue trying to interact more on linkedin.
Read at least one article on fiercepharma or fiercebiotech
each day (maybe make notes for a small weekly recap blog post).
Continue with the photography challenge
Continue working through various e-courses/groups and the
transition plan (pick specific cities, and have an idea of what my superpower
Continue trying to workout daily.
Aim for a week of no spend days (start money log)
Read (or finish) at least three non-fiction books
Start really trying to work on science posts for the blog
(and potentially on linkedin as well).
Figure out the best way (still) of trying to have my
Image of Goofy running: http://clipart-library.com/clipart/pc787erqi.htm