every December i try to remember my year and every year i draw a blank. wondering “what did i do for the past 12 months?” is unpleasant, worrisome, and just plain weird. so this year i’m trying something different—i’m holding personal progress reports.
one point of the exercise is to keep track of my life generally, so i don’t have the disorienting experience i described above. and the other is to track particular goals, so i can alter or maintain the course, and remind myself of them in case i've forgotten.
because this pairs well with my de-cluttering, i’m doing them both every three months, so they coincide.
pick a schedule that makes sense for you. the trick is doing it frequently enough so plans stay front and center but also giving yourself enough time to work on your goals before the next evaluation.
"We live in a universe that has only one constant: that everything changes. Any attempts to fix something permanently to your brain, or your life, or the world will ultimately lead to frustration. Instead of trying to make something permanent, just try to integrate it into the moving flow of your life. Let it weave back and forth in prominence and bob up and down as is fit."
that's a relief, right? because some of my plans went well—improv? CHECK!
and others have not. i’m currently unable to nail down a job, even part-time, my book plan has detoured—although i think my new idea is better—and did i mention i intended to meet three new people per week in 2016? arguably, if i divide the number of people i’ve met at parties and events over the number total weeks of the year thus far, maybe i have. but it hasn’t been the steady socializing stream i’ve imagined.
oh well. try, try again.
another part of the report can be, dare i say it…fun. on a whim, i drew a timeline of personal events from the past three months to address “how am i spending my year?”
initially it was tough to recall the order of these events, but since it would be even harder in December, i’m relieved i did it.
why is it so hard to remember what we’ve done recently? i don’t know. maybe early-onset dementia. regardless, if you want to give the review or the timeline a try, it’s helpful to know where to look for reminders of what you’ve been up to. here’s where to find hints of your recent past:
- your journal
- your blog
- all your calendars
- Facebook page—check events attended, check-ins, messages, updates.
- texts—clever, right?
- photos on your phone
- the playlist you’re hooked on—especially if it includes new or new-to-you songs
how do you keep track of your year? would you try these reviews? let me know in the comments!
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