So it’s that time of the month again–time for a check-in on my yearlong limited spending challenge.
For those who may be new to the blog, here is a brief recap–I decided at the end of 2020 that instead of trying to do ‘no-spend’ months (and end up splurging), I would ‘limit’ the spending and items would fall into one of two categories: needed and splurges.
I did really well in January on the challenge, and then slowly started slipping since then and the plan was that I’ll start ‘rebounding’ and honoring the challenge again starting in June.
So, while I didn’t do as well as I did in January–I did better than I had for the past two or three months. THere were still some purchases and minor splurging–but nothing like I had done from March through May.
I did buy numerous books (I think I had mentioned it sometime in either 2020 or 2019 on a book review–I’m an impulsive book buyer), and those books were:
Chasing Her Trust by Danielle Pays
Rancher Bears Complete Series by Candace Ayers
Cocker Brothers (1st six book box set) by Faleena Hopkins
The Universe Always has a Plan by Matt Kahn
Awakening your inner shaman by Marcela Lobos
Mesopotamia ‘box set’ by Captivating History
Mesoamerican History ‘box set’ by Captivating History
Grumpy Single Dad by Melinda Minx
Classical mythology A to Z: an encyclopedia of gods & goddesses, heroes & heroines, nymphs, spirits, monsters and places by Annette Giesecke
Cellular and Molecular Immunology
United Nations: A History by Stanley Meisler
The Complete Book of Amulets & talismans by Migene Gonzales-Wippler
The Ancestral power of amulets, talismans, and mascots: folk magic in witchcraft and religion by Nigel Pennick
The compendium of magical beasts: an anatomical study of cryptozoology’s most elusive beings by Dr. Veronica Wigberht-Blackwater
Superstitions: A handbook of folklore, myths, and legends from around the world by D.R. McElroy
Creatures of the deep: in search of the sea’s monsters and the world they live in by Erich Hoyt
Dictionary of witches, wizards, and warlocks: the spells, charms, potions and magic of wizardology by Michael Freze
The door to witchcraft: A New Witch’s guide to history, traditions and modern day spells by Tonya Brown
Secrets of Egyptian spellcasting: amulets, talismans, and magical lifeforms by M.A. Budge & E.A. Wallis
The last set of books (from Classical Mythology through Secrets of Egyptian Spellcasting) are going to be ‘reference books’ for a couple of story ideas that I have bouncing around in my head, in addition to other things–the immunology book is because I’m interested in the topic and thinking of writing a blog post or two on the subject–but didn’t have any ‘reference books’ within reach.
In addition there was another large free sale of e-books, so I managed to get another 58 romance books in a variety of different sub-genera.
I did talk myself out of the one pricey e-course, and instead bought another ‘cheaper’ one that will also be shorter than the other. The additional e-course I bought is: ’15 errors in scientific writing and how to fix them’ on Udemy. It is roughly an hour and a half long, and I’m hoping to work through the course sometime in July (and hopefully not later than August).
So, yes I still ‘splurged’ on books this month–but in terms of the e-books it wasn’t that much (in comparison to earlier months). The physical books were pricey–but since they weren’t trade size paperbacks, the price wasn’t a surprise. I know that people will say that I could have just checked out books from the library-and my response is yes, I could have checked out books–but I prefer to have the ‘reference’ book. I never know when I may want to revisit the topic, and this way I know that the book will always be available.
I’m going to try to stick with the same goal for July, and hopefully ‘be on par’ with January in terms of spending of money. I am slowly learning to curb the impulsive spending, as I realized this wasn’t something I was going to be able to change overnight, and that it would be something to focus on daily.
So the moon will be transitioning through the Capricorn constellation tomorrow–marking the sixth full moon of the year. Pretty soon we’re going to be halfway through 2021, and it seems like just yesterday it was 2020 at times. But before I look ahead to what I can accomplish during the Capricorn full moon, I need to look back at the goals I set for the Sagittarius full moon and see how I did with each of them.
The goals for the Sagittarius full moon included:
Honoring the ‘limited spending challenge’ during the month of June. The past few months have seen me buy way more e-books that I needed to, therefore I’m going to limit things to a single order from Amazon (in addition to any already pre-ordered books an d the two automatic monthly shipments).
‘Track’ my energy, so that I know what time(s) I actually have the energy to do various things (such as working out, writing, research, and so forth), and then slowly work on ‘transforming’ that into a schedule and editorial calendar.
Roll the dice and see what the next adventure (or adventures) will be in terms of personal and professional development.
So how did I do (or have been doing) with each of the goals?
In terms of honoring the ‘limited-spending’ challenge this month, I’ve been on point for the most part. There have only been a few e-book purchases (several under $2, and then the other two were history sets [Mesopotamia and Mesoamerica]), and I placed my large single order for some physical books early this week (mainly to serve as reference books for a couple of different sotry ideas I have bouncing around in my head).
I’m still working on this, mainly because the past two weeks or so have been unbearably warm and humid that I haven’t elt like doing much, although I have gotten quite a bit of computer work done when I haven’t been sitting outside. Though I have noticed that my energy does wane about the time I get hungry–so eating regularly and ensuring that I’m eating enough protein, carbs, and good fats will also be helpful.
I actually rolled the dice over the weekend, and have ‘discovered’ what my next adventures will be in terms of personal and professional development:
I will be moving from the ‘doodle/draw cross-stitch pattern’ to ‘Review Molecular Cloning’. Which is really funny, as I’ve started to draft an outline for a semi-technical document: ‘Troubleshooting tips for Molecular Cloning’. Once I have the cross-stitch pattern mostly drawn out I will then be focusing more on the writing project. I’m going to be giving myself roughly six weeks to get it done (hopefully be publishing it on LinkedIn no later than July 27).
The next books chosen to be read are: ‘Why You’re Stuck’ by Derek Doepker, ‘More of Less’ by Josh Becker, and ‘Master Your Core’ by Dr. Bohdanna Zazulak
Starting (and completing) at least one copy-writing course
So I managed to meet the goals (more or less) for the Sagittarius full moon. The editorial calendar will always be a work in prgoress, especially since I’m still trying to be multi-facet in terms of what I write and publish on the blog (and even with what I share on Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook).
While I won’t say that I’m totally ‘recovered’ from burnout–I’m on the path to recovery. At times I feel like I’m being nibbled on by the writing bug (hence drafting an outline for ‘troubleshooting tips for molecular cloning’, starting to mind-map other ideas or at least get them on paper, and ordering numerous other books for a possible short story (or novella)).
I think that I’m getting better at not flipping back through ‘old chapters’ of my life as I work on foraging a new chapter–I just was adding a couple of extra epilogues to that last chapter.
So as I continue mending my relationship with food–a question for everyone: what are your favorite types of good fats?
So the moon has transitioned into its full moon phase and is in the Sagittarius constellation currently. It was also an lunar eclipse this morning as well, but due to the overcast sky and slight fog–I was unable to see it (I was hoping for clear skies and the possiblity of getting a picture).
The Sagittarius moon is the ‘fun energy’ moon, and while this is nice going into the summer months, I’m hoping that it isn’t going to lead to a spike in infections/cases of SARS-CoV2 (since we’re still not technically out of the pandemic yet). Therefore, I’m personally going to use this time for more reflection and aim for a more transformative period moving into the summer.
Every month I look at ‘Moonology: working with the magic of lunar cycles’ by Yasmin Boland to get questinos to reflect on for a day or two that deal with the moon in each zodiac constellation. The questions for the Sagittarius full moon are:
Have I been too flippant, or carefree to the point of being careless, irresponsible, even?
Have I been letting myself down by allowing myself to get distracted and bored?
Have I been overconfident to the point of arrogance, or too preachy?
Have I been a commitment phobe, to my own detriment?
Have I been seeing the bigger picture?
If I were to number the above questions 1-5, my answers would be as follows:
In terms of finances, I would have to say that I’ve been a little too ‘carefree’ lately. While I started a ‘limited-spending’ challenge at teh beginning of the year, I’ve splurged on books for the past four out of five months, but at the same time investing in my professional development (bought some more e-courses). While I’m aiming to go freelance/online/remote/contract in terms of work, I do need to start really focusing on improving in several areas (data analysis/programming, writing/editing different styles/formats, and so forth).
Yes, I have been allowing myself to get distracted (I won’t really say bored, but more of a ‘fear of failure/’imposter syndrome’ feeling) more often lately. One thing I’ve noticed is that I get caught up in the ‘comparison’ trap and that spikes the anxiety, which leads me to look for distractions instead of working on the issue. While I’ve realized that I’m slowly getting better at time and project management (though still having some issues), I need to develop or find some type of productivity tracker to help keep me focused as well.
Nope, I can easily say that I have not been overconfident to the point of arrogance or being too preachy.
Depending on what aspect of life we’re talking about. Yes, I have been a slight commitment phobe to myself (mainly in terms of professional development, and a little on the personal side as well). I’m working on getting better–I think having created the personal/professional development board game is going to help a lot with those areas. I’m also working on giving myself grace and trying to ‘rework’ my mindset in terms of fitness and nutrition. Can’t be labeled a commitment phobe in terms of others since I’m currently not in a relationship, and we’re still in the middle of a pandemic (so it really isn’t a good idea to try to get together with people currently).
What bigger picture are we talking about? In terms of myself–I’m still having ‘troubles’ trying to see/project where I want to be in say five or more years down the road. The bigger picture of my career? I’m slowly getting an idea of what I would like to do–but there is a lot of work to get there (both in terms of skills I need to have at least a basic understanding of, and trying to find clients). I’m also still way more pessimistic than optimistic about things (though possibly not as pessimistic as I was a year ago). But there are still way too many problems right now, that has me wondering if we’re going to survive as a society over the next few decades.
For me, the moon in Sagittarius is also going through my second house (or the cash, property, and values zone). This brings about feelings of one’s financial security, stability, and self-worth. We’re suppose to strive to find a balance between various aspects of life–are we tired of working for others and wanting to strike out on our own–now would be the time to start planning it, or have we been neglecting ourselves and focusing on others?
This zone is popping up when I still have the time to do some serious self-reflection. While the world is slowly trying to reopen, I’m still planning on self-isolation of several more months (I want to see what type of a spike the summer is going to bring) before I think of any type of travel (for either enjoyment or career-related). I’m still working on lowering my bills, and thinking of other ways of earning cash. The idea of having an online/freelance business is really starting to sound appealing, though I need to decide whether to try to go in a single direction to begin with or a combination of different areas (I am leaning more towards the second direction than the first). This could be my ‘new normal’ as we finally ge through this first long pandemic wave of the SARS-CoV2 virus.
My reflection time will be spent on figuring out the freelance/online possibility, but at the same time thinking of how it can also be of help to a changing world, as I noted last year: the world won’t heal itself, and unless we start addressing all of the issues, the world won’t be around long to support us–and there is no planet B.
So the small goal list I have for the Sagittarius full moon includes:
Honor the ‘limited-spending’ challenge during the month of June. I’m going to try to limit it to a single order from Amazon (in addition to any pre-ordered books, and my automatic monthly order). I truthfully have enough books to read, that I need to just stay away from any and all e-book ads.
‘Track’ my energy, so that I know what time(s) I actually have the energy to do various things (exercise, writing, research, and so forth), and slowly work on ‘transforming’ that into a weekly schedule and editorial calendar.
Roll the dice and see what the next adventure (or adventures) will be in terms of personal and professional development.
Finally, as the one quote (more or less) states: ‘You can’t start the next chapter of your life, if you keep re-reading the last’, and I’m working hard on not flipping back through ‘old chapters’ but trying to forage ahead and start a new one.
So, it is time for my 3rd check-in on my latest attempt on my take of the 101 goals challenge. If you haven’t heard of this challenge, it goes something like this–you make a list of 101 things that you would like to get accomplished in 1001-days. You then should periodically check-in with your list to see how you’re doing with the various goals on the list. I’ve tried to do the 101 goals in 1001-days several times, but usually ended up quitting after a few months (mainly due to forgetting to check-in with my list on a fairly consistent basis).
I decided to modify the challenge to where I have a longer list of things I’d like to get accomplished, and I basically doubled the time frame (so instead of 1001-days or 2.7 years, I’m trying 2002-days or roughly 5.5 years). I decided to double the time frame mainly because of the SARS-CoV2 pandemic is still going on, and therefore quite a few of my goals are actually on ‘hold’ until I feel like it is safe to travel again.
While I got my vaccine in early April (the Johnson’s & Johnson’s 1 & done shot), I decided that I’m still going to shelter in place through the summer and into the fall–I’m curious to see what type of ‘spikes’ the US will be seeing this summer/fall due to summer vacation and travel starting to pick up again. In addition I’m still working on figuring out what my ‘new’ normal is going to be looking like.
So, now it is time to look at the goals and see how I’m progressing in the different areas.
Professional development and career: On-going
1. Transition into an industry position (probably remote/online or freelancing at this point to start); there will be several posts on this goal
2. Learn a programming language (python or R—ties in with #6)—going to go with python to begin with.
3. Finish various e-courses that I’ve bought, but in particular:
4. Clinical Research Coalition—only have a little over one module left for this program (I think it’s like 13 videos and two tests).
5. Medical Writers Organization—need to finish the writing/editing assignments
6. Data Scientist Syndicate—Finished September 3rd 2020
7. Project Management Consortium
8. Management Consulting Firm
9. Intellectual Property Pack
10. Regulatory Affairs Council
11. All other courses—see additional lists in the journal.
Decided that to make things a little easier—I will have a list of courses that I would like to finish in 2021, and if I manage to finish all of those, then I will go back to the major lists in the journal.
12. More interacting on Linkedin—Hard to score these, I’m doing the best with #13; though I have started doing my own posts—mainly photographs and quotes; need to start working more on the other 2 (especially the giving/asking for recommendations).
13. Sharing articles from various biotech pages, and other science pages
Managing to do this at least two to five days a week.
14. Commenting on posts
Trying to get better at this.
15. Giving/Asking for recommendations—need to start doing
16. Start writing my own posts
I’m slowly dipping my toe into the world of LinkedIn publishing, but usually by posting a picture or a motivational quote to begin will. My two best posts have been the comfort/stretch/risk/die diagram posts. The first one had 1,934 views, 36 reactions, and 12 comments over a two month period, while the second post has had 7,602 views, 46 reactions, and 27 comments over the past 4 days. I will be posting the updated comfort diagram possibly tomorrow here on the blog as well.
17. Creating monthly/weekly/daily calendars for above goals—trying to get better at the editorial or to-do-list calendars.
18. Renew professional memberships—Need to pick just one or two currently to renew; can’t do all at once.
Both Personal and Professional Development—still working on all of these
19. Become fluent in Spanish—Started to use the app Mondly for refreshing my Spanish, though I haven’t been that active with the app for the past month or so. Need to try to spend at least 30-45 minutes 5 days a week on this.
20. Become fluent in German
21. Become proficient in French, Norwegian, or Swedish
22. Read at least 300 personal/professional development books; this will include books from my previous attempts at 1001-day challenges as well. I have over 300 books on the list, and I would like to get through at least 100 of them before I keep adding to the list.
This is actually going to be reformatted and the number slightly lowered. I’ve decided to go with say reading ~30-40 non-fiction books a year. With counting previous years in to the running total I’ve read: 2018-2020 (73, though I considered 12 of them to be “reference” on a topic). I’ve also finished 7 books so far in 2021).
This means that to reach the 300 total I need to read another 220 books over 1702 days.
While I decided to try to not add any new books to the list–I probably have added in another five to ten books over the past two months or so.
23. Finish the books on scientific writing
24. Start building up a portfolio of work (writing/data analysis/plus other ideas)
25. Develop a daily writing habit (tied with several goals below)
26. Write a letter to my future self
Personal development and hobbies—started a few, but need to also start in on others as well
27. Paint and frame at least one original painting
28. More photography—With the weather warming up, I’m hoping to do at least a weekly walk up at Boomer Lake (weather permitting); and updating/adding pages
29. 365-Day Challenge (aim for 365 different pictures)—have started this challenge again, though it isn’t going at a consecutive 365 days.
30. Update photography pages on blog
I’ve been adding pages to the bird tab on the website, and have been aiming to add at least one new species page a week (with pictures). The other pages added would be information on the bird order and bird family (with pictures as well).
31. Make my own jewelry
32. Learn to cross-stitch—Started doing this the other day. I’ve realized it will take practice and time to be able to do this decently, but it is something new to concentrate on
33. Get a new sewing machine—On hold; seems getting a sewing machine there is a 50/50 risk that the machine will have problems winding the bobbin
34. Make a new quilt (or this may wait until I move)
35. Make a set of drapes for the bedroom (for backdrop for any zoom calls)
36. Start a new afghan (write a post on finishing the other)—need to figure out how to patch the other afghans. I’m slowly patching the other two afghans that Chaos chewed holes in. One is basically patched (though I need to sew the patch on a little better), and then I need to knit the patches for the second one.
37. Show case crafts on blog (possibly a weekly update?)
38. Start writing a book
39. Learn Photoshop
40. Write in journal daily (answer questions/prompts from journaling books and free thought); this has been an on and off endeavor. There are some days/weeks I’m good at writing daily, and then I may go a week or longer without writing in it.
41. Create my own coffee-table photography book
42. Learn basic sign language
43. Start a virtual book club
Finances—still working on these, since I’m taking time off there isn’t a steady paycheck coming in yet.
44. Create monthly budgets—currently this is just paying off the bills.
45. Credit card debts down and hopefully paid off monthly—some are high, but that is due to buying a couple of personal/professional development courses that were rather expensive.
46. Declutter the house (way of earning extra cash)
47. Savings account up another 20K (hopefully)—this will be tied in with #44, #46, and any other ways of trying to earn a little extra cash.
48. Talk with financial person about short-term investment possibilities
49. Continue doing the small surveys as a way of earning a little extra cash
50. Finish the various financial e-courses, and decide when/how to start investing
Fitness & Health—On going
51. Get into the best shape of my life
52. Multivitamin and supplements daily; I’ve only forgotten to take my multivitamin and supplements every so often.
53. Manage to make it through the following Beachbody workouts
54. Morning Meltdown 100)—Finished my 1st round 9/15/2020
55. Yoga Booty Ballet—Abs & Butt ~3/4 of program completed by 11/14/2020
56. 10 Rounds—1st round finished on 12/26/2020
57. Barre Blend—Starting on 2/8/2021; only managed to do half the program before moving on to another one mainly due to the lunges and just not really feeling the program. Hoping to fit the last four weeks in this year between other programs.
58. Insanity Max 30
59. LIIFT4 (have already done this program once); 2nd round finished 11/14/2020
60. 22-Minute Hard Corps
63. Insanity: Asylum 1
64. Insanity: Asylum 2
65. 4 weeks of Prep
66. 6 weeks of the work
67. T25 (have already done this program once)
68. Brazil Butt Lift
69. 21-Day Fix (Already done this program once)—Started to do the ‘LIVE’ version, though may go ahead and start the third round of LIIFT4 next week instead of finishing this program.
70. 21-Day Fix Extreme (Already done this program once)
71. Country Heat (already done this program once)
72. CIZE—Did this program during March and finished it the first week of April. Enjoyed it even if I have two left feet and couldn’t keep up with the cast
74. Muscle Burns Fat Advanced—First round done on 2/7/2021
75. Let’s Get Up! —Shawn T’s new one; hopefully out fall 2021
76. 9 week control freak off the wall (technically with just dumbbells)
77. Shawn Week
78. 80-Day Obsession
79. Brazil Butt Lift: Carnivale
80. Shift Shop: Proving Grounds
82. Core de Force
83. Manage 5 push-ups on my toes (practicing and managing 5-8 on my knees)
84. Manage 10 push-ups on my toes
85. Hold a two-minute forearm plank
86. Hold a 90 second plank
87. Meditate nightly—though sometimes it is only for a minute or two. Trying to increase the timing.
88. 60-80 oz of water a day; this has been more likely 40-60 oz of water daily and sometimes up to 80 oz
89. Stretch daily; I do try to stretch nightly, and in the mornings before getting out of bed.
90. Get at least 10,010,000 steps (breaks down to 5K/day)—on my way; I’ve managed to hit all month goals (and surpass slightly).
Blog and Social Media–Ongoing
91. Finish YouTube for bosses course
92. Finish YouTube course creation for bosses course
93. Finish blog to biz course
94. Launch a YouTube channel
95. Launch an online course
96. Get blog traffic to 500+ views a day
97. Rebrand myself (?)
98. Get Instagram followers to constant 800+
99. Get pintrest followers to constant 400+
100. Get twitter followers to constant 1000+
101. Publish at least two blog series
102. Editorial calendars (monthly/weekly/daily)
105. Facebook pages
108. Get becomingJessi (or new name if I change) to 1000+ likes/follows
109. Various top 10 author lists
110. Various top 10 book series lists
111. Launch a podcast
112. Full/New Moon Goals
113. Create my own altar (wicca/pagan)—This has been accomplished somewhat, as the current altar is on a bookshelf, so it looks fairly crowded.
114. Weekly (or daily) tarot/oracle card readings—Have been managing to do this (more or less), though I haven’t shared any of the readings on social media yet.
115. 15 minutes outdoors in the morning (coffee only) weather permitting; probably on hold now until spring—fall/winter mornings are usually somewhere between the 30s and 50s (if it’s closer to the higher end—maybe).
116. Keep at least 3 plants alive
117. Design a science based board game
118. Create and update digital vision board
119. Reorganize my storage unit
120. Put in at least one flower garden around the house (backyard, and/or front yard)
121. Help put up partial privacy fence in backyard
122. Start downsizing clothes and creating different “minimum” wardrobes (work/professional/casual; home/casual/working out)
123. Develop at least 30 different 30-day challenges. I’ve lowered the number of days for this challenge, but some of the challenges will include:
One challenge will be 30 days of iPhone Photography.
124. Start downsizing rest of my things./ as well—would like to probably be able to live comfortably in a smallish size apartment (or house) wherever I move for the next job.
Goals on hold due to the global coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) outbreak (either because they require traveling, going into a large store, and/or being around large groups of people):
125. Re-pierce my ears
126. Go to at least 1 scientific conference
127. Present at a scientific conference
128. Go to at least 2 professional networking events
129. Move to a new (or maybe not new) city for job
130. Visit at least 3 new countries
131. Visit at least one new national and/or state park
132. Visit at least one new national and/or state monument
133. Visit at least one new zoo
134. Visit at least one new aquarium
135. Fly out and/or land at 3 new (to me) airports
136. Visit at least one new city
137. Visit at least one new state
138. See the northern lights
139. Attend at least one blogging conference
140. Attend at least one author-reader conference
141. Swim with whale sharks
Once I move:
143. Get fabric and foam and make new cushions for chairs
144. New couch & chair for living room
145. New dresser for bedroom
146. New mattress & box spring for bed and/or a new bed set
147. New TV & stand
148. New desk/craft workstation
So I added in another couple of advanced Cheeky courses under the professional development area (and that isn’t even all the advanced Cheeky courses–I have another nine on my list in my notebook), not to mention all the other professional development courses that I’ve bought over the past few years.
Currently my main goals for professional development is to create (or at least start planning) a career that allows for me to make use of my strengths, is potentially remote/online/freelancing, but also would allow me to work ‘in-house’ as well from time to time. I also realize that I haven’t been making as much progress with the various courses (both personal and professional) that I would like, an dwill be working on ways to correct this issue moving forward.
As I write this post, I realize that I really do need to start developing some type of calendar for posts, as I’ve stated that I’m going to write posts (views on different job paths and book reviews), but that is as far as I’ve gotten with certain items–so yet again, problem acknowledged and will be working on correcting this issue as well moving forward.
At the beginning of the year I set up a bingo card of different workout programs that I would like to complete over the next two years, and had set a goal of trying to complete nine of them this year (2021). I’ve realized that I may or may not reach that particular goal–reason, I would rather repeat programs that I enjoyed doing instead of trying to force my way through other programs. I will probably give each program a week or so of time, but if I haven’t gotten into by then I’ll move on to another one. Programs that will probably be repeated: LIIFT4, Morning Meltdown 100, 10 Rounds, and possibly Let’s Get Up (haven’t done this one yet, but like the trainer). Programs that may not be totally completed: Insanity, Insanity Asylum 1 & 2, and possibly Insanity: Max 30; the reason is that these are mainly cardio and at times I get bored with a cardio only (or cardio-heavy) program.
In terms of the direction for my career transition, I’m still leaning in the direction of freelance/remote/online work, with the possibility of some onsite positions as well. Trying to do both (working for myself and a company) would allow me to have interactions with others on a somewhat consistent basis, but also allow me to have a steady second stream of income as well (just in case another pesky pandemic comes along and shuts things down again). I’m also leaning to the more multi-directional approach (such as writing, data analysis, project and/or product management just to name a few ideas), as it appeals to both my mixed-styled multipontialite personality, and my strengths (learner, intellection, input, achiever, and ideation).
This means at some point this year (probably closer to fall/winter), I will be changing the name of the blog/site to encompass both aspects of life (personal hobbies and development and the professional development and services offered). I have a couple of ideas bouncing around for a new name and I may post a poll on either Facebook or LinkedIn (or possibly both) to gauge others opinions on the new names.
I’m slowly developing a hybrid editorial/to-be accomplished calendar/list, but still am swinging between being overly ambitious in what I would like to get accomplished for the month, and then falling into analysis/paralysis and not getting anything accomplished for a week or so.
I started using the time management app Self Control to limit the amount of time that I’m spending on social media and other pages, and it has helped (when I remember to turn the app on). As I look ahead to trying to balance various aspects of things I will possibly try to organize my ‘professional/work’ hours to where I’m doing research on topics say Monday & Tuesday, writing the rough drafts and finding images on Wednesday, editing on Thursday, and then publishing on Fridays. This will possibly be the type of schedule I take once I’m really trying to showcase various professional services (such as writing, data analysis or project management projects). I will still be publishing more frequently on the personal/professional development aspects and hobbies (photography, book reviews, course reviews, goals and so forth).
I can say that I am making forward progress, no matter how slow it looks. I’ve found that slow (and the sometimes back-and-forth bounce from comfortable to slightly uncomfortable) is the best, as it usually allows me to notice when my inner critic/imposter syndrome tries to derail me from reaching various goals.
Over the next 100 days, I plan on focusing more on various personal/professional development courses, writing book reviews, course reviews, reading, crafting, and continuing on my health and fitness journey.
So I noticed that over the past two months, I had been
spending quite a bit of money on certain things—namely more e-books—I am an
avid reader, and have the tendency to buy books before I finish reading ones that
I already own. For example—after my first staff position was terminated I
decided I was going to focus on personal and professional development and
started buying numerous books. I think by the time I managed to get my second
staff position the number of books bought were up to about seventy books.
Fast-forward a little over two years and that list has ballooned to almost
three hundred and fifty books, I’ve read about forty-five of them and consider
another ten to be “reference” on a topic—that means I have probably another 280
books on the list to read. I also have bought numerous other books as well—so
yeah, I shouldn’t be getting anymore books for a while (at least in terms of
I also had been buying extra lives on a silly match-three
game during the past couple of months. So the two combined to more money spent
than I really meant to spend.
Therefore I’m declaring March to a minimum-spending month.
What do I mean by that? Well, other than books that have already been
pre-ordered (and there are only about six or seven of them), taking my dog to
the vet, a possible physical order from amazon, and possibly meeting up with a
friend for lunch—I’m not going to be spending any money.
I’m going to turn my focus to the things that I already own—the
large number of books (both fiction and non-fiction), which I should be
reading. I’m going to attempt to have a book review or two done monthly (though
with some of the non-fiction books, it could wind up being some type of monthly
challenge). I’m also going to focus on working through the various electronic
e-courses that I’ve bought (hopefully remembering to take good enough notes for
possible blog posts).
I also will just take a deep breath and not worry how long
it takes me to get through various levels on the match-3 game in the morning or
The goal is to only have spent money possibly a dozen times
this month (not counting bills being paid); if it works well it will continue
through the rest of the year (with various changes to what I’m possibly
spending money on).
So in one of my many self reflection periods this past
month, I realized that I hadn’t been looking at my 101 goal list and seeing how
close I was to any of the goals (with the exception of my step goal). I also
realized looking at the list, it was all jumbled together and that made it hard
to see which goals could “feed” off of each other in terms of the
daily/weekly/monthly goals that I should be setting to reach them.
Therefore, I took the time and rewrote my list—this time
grouping things into different categories. I’m going to be hitting restart on
the time, to where if I start on November 2, 2019—I should then be finishing up
around July 29, 2022.
So below are my goals—but broken up into different
categories (such as professional development/career, personal development, both
personal/professional development, travel, health & fitness to name a few
Professional development and career:
Transition into an industry position (tied to latest self reflections post);
there will be several posts on this goal
2. Learn a
various e-courses that I’ve bought, but in particular:
Dream Job Hack
Medical Writers Organization
interacting on Linkedin
Sharing articles from various biotech pages, and other science pages
Commenting on posts
Giving/Asking for recommendations
Creating monthly/weekly/daily calendars for above goals
11. Go to
at least 1 scientific conference
Present at a scientific conference
13. Go to
at least 2 professional networking events
15. Move to
a new (or maybe not new) city for job
Both Personal and Professional Development
fluent in Spanish
fluent in German (or maybe French)
18. Read at
least 100 personal/professional development books
the books on scientific writing
Personal development and hobbies
and frame at least one original painting
365-Day Challenge (aim for 365 different pictures)
Update photography pages on blog
24. Make my
my latest afghan
case crafts on blog (possibly a weekly update?)
writing a book
in journal daily (answer questions/prompts from journaling books and free
my own coffee-table photography book
basic sign language
card debts down and hopefully paid off monthly
Declutter the house (way of earning extra cash)
account up another 20K (hopefully)
with financial person about short-term investment possibilities
at least 3 new countries
at least one new national and/or state park
at least one new national and/or state monument
at least one new zoo
at least one new aquarium
43. Fly out
and/or land at 3 new (to me) airports
at least one new city
at least one new state
46. See the
at least one blogging conference
at least one author-reader conference
49. Attend Beachbody
Coach Summit 2020
Fitness & Health
into the best shape of my life
Multivitamin and supplements daily
at least 250 days of Beachbody workouts
5 push-ups on my toes
10 push-ups on my toes
55. Hold a two-minute forearm plank
56. Hold a 90 second plank
57. Meditate nightly
58. 30-day Zumba challenge
59. 60-80 oz of water a day
60. Stretch daily
61. Go one
weekend a month with no social media (no scrolling through social media pages;
may still post on the sites)
62. Get at
least 14,014,000 steps (breaks down to 14K/day)
Blog and Social Media
63. Finish YouTube for bosses course
64. Finish YouTube course creation for bosses
65. Finish blog to biz course
66. Launch a YouTube channel
an online course
blog traffic to 500+ views a day
Instagram followers to constant 800+
pintrest followers to constant 400+
twitter followers to constant 1000+
at least two blog series
74. Editorial calendars (monthly/weekly/daily)
78. Get Fit
with Jessi to 1000+ likes/follows
becomingJessi (or new name if I change) to 1000+ likes/follows
top 10 author lists
top 10 book series lists
Full/New Moon Goals
83. Create my own altar (wicca/pagan)
tarot/oracle card readings
85. Keep at
least 3 plants alive
a science based board game
87. Create and update a digital vision board
my storage unit
Once I move:
90. Get a
new sewing machine
Make a new quilt
Get fabric and foam and make new cushions for chairs
couch & chair for living room
dresser for bedroom
mattress & box spring for bed
96. New TV
TV shows to binge watch
5-0 (latest remake)
Upon A Time
So that is my update and “organized” 101 goals in 1001 days.
This time I’m trying to balance things out—personal and professional
development, career and then just odds and ends. Hopefully with it being
organized, I will be better at tracking how close I am to completing certain
items and which items when completed will flow into another one being started.
So the moon will be transitioning into the Sagittarius
constellation today, and entering it’s full moon phase as well. This marks the
approximate halfway mark for the month (though it is a few days off), and come
the end of the week—we’ll be hitting the summer solstice (aka the longest day
of the year). Somehow we’ve almost made it halfway through 2019.
So once again one can turn to “Moonology: working with the
magic of lunar cycles” by Yasmin Boland to see what questions one can ask
themselves during the Sagittarius full moon.
Have I been too flippant, or carefree to the point of being
careless, irresponsible even?
Have I been letting myself down by allowing myself to get
distracted and bored?
Have I been overconfident to the point of arrogance, or too
Have I been a commitment-phobe, to my own detriment?
Have I been seeing the bigger picture?
If I number the questions 1-5, I think that currently my
answers would be the following:
don’t think I’ve been either flippant or carefree lately—because if I had been,
my anxiety wouldn’t nearly be as high as it currently is. While I’m not happy
with my current job (and probably would be willing to quit at the drop of a
pin), I still strive to do my best at what I was hired to do. There are numerous
other issues at play in terms of my nine-to-five job and the only thing I
really have control over is my reactions. Yes, there are a few things that I
should probably have brought up sooner—but when you’re told money is tight
(numerous times and without even mentioning things), you try to make things
work and do so in ways that others don’t realize that there are problems (not
the best way of handling things—but that is how I’m currently handling things).
I have been letting myself down by allowing myself to be distracted both by my
nine-to-five job (I don’t feel comfortable trying to figure out my life when
I’m on the clock), and the fact that when I do get home at night—all I want to
do is unwind and recharge so I can do the whole show again the next day. I know
that I need to step outside of my comfort zone to figure out what I want to do
with my life—but I need to do it in a way that won’t send me into a full-blown
don’t think that I’ve been overconfident about anything lately. If nothing
else, I’ve allowed myself to slide into the depth of negative thinking about
quite a few things lately.
question could go in so many different directions—but I’ll look at it from the
aspects of both my personal health (physical and mental) and career. In answer
to the question in both regards, is yes I have been a commitment-phobe and it
has been to my own detriment. I know that I need to work on myself and I have
to make the time for it (no one else will), but due to feeling totally blah,
and down in the dumps in regards to my current nine-to-five job—I don’t have
the energy to do so at the end of the day. This is something that I need to
work on over the next few months.
I been seeing the bigger picture? I honestly don’t know how to answer this—as
I’m not sure what the bigger picture should look like yet. I thought I knew
years ago, what my bigger picture was—but that wasn’t what I should be doing
and I feel like I’m staring through a unfocused camera lens at my new bigger
picture. I don’t know if I just need to focus, and zoom out—or if I should
focus, and slowly start zooming in.
I just realized that my answers are pretty close to what I
had written during the last Sagittarius full moon—at least I realize that I’m
stuck in certain areas, and that pretty soon I’m going to have to make a
drastic change in order for things to start moving forward again.
I should also take a look at the house that the Sagittarius
full moon is moving through—and it would be my second house (or the cash,
property, and values zone). So this zone refers to both your money and
property, but also your values (feelings, ideals, and how you feel about
yourself). This is the time to reflect and be aware of your self-esteem (do you
feel good or bad about yourself), as it’s thought, “your self-esteem will
affect how much cash you attract”.
In addition, the full moon period is also the time to start
figuring out what isn’t working anymore and start moving away from it
(releasing it from your life), and also realizing that there is going to be a
slight tug-of-war going on as well.
Looking at both (the moon and the house)—I see that I need
to strive to find the balance between both speaking up for myself (and possibly
going to far) and staying in a job for the money and quitting (to work on
figuring out what I want to do with my life).
So the goals for this period are going to include:
Scheduling a time to talk with the
TIAA representative about my retirement account (and what to do with it when I
leave my current position)—it depends on the times that are available.
my “reboot break” plan. I realize that I need to “reboot” myself before I can
properly focus on working on my transition from academia to industry.
Focusing on writing more content for the blog, and working on myself (yoga and meditation to begin with).
So besides updating my 101 goals for the next 1001 days (and hopefully looking at them more often), I also updated my Level 10 life.
So yesterday I sat down and drew out where I thought everything was sitting in the 10 different areas of life: friends & family, personal development, spirituality, finances, career, social life, fun & recreation, giving & contribution, physical environment, and then finally health & fitness.
As usual things were going up and down in numerous areas. The only one that really stayed the same was my social life at basically 1. I realize that I have no social life, and currently I’m perfectly fine with that, though I know that getting out could help with the networking–I just really don’t have the energy to do it right now. I’m sure that it will change once I move to a new city and meet new people.
So what are some things that I can try to do over the next three months to try to bring the numbers up?
Get in touch with friends/family via email, facebook, linkedin.
Continue reading personal development books & getting through at least one personal development course that I’ve bought.
Mediate about 5 minutes a night and do daily tarot card readings
Savings challenges and limiting what I’m buying on campus.
Working on my transition plan and networking
Meeting up with friends for lunch (or walking around Boomer Lake) and/or trying to make it to a Cheeky meetup.
Schedule time for crafts
Go through clothes to possibly donate
Repack boxes in storage unit & straighten up my bedroom
Start either another round of LIIFT4 or try to do InsanityMax30 again.