In an attempt to hold myself accountable for my goals and encourage myself to work on them, I made a video (in Arabic) on my Youtube Channel “Agenda” earlier this year where I talked about my main goals for the year. I hear that going public about your goals makes it more likely that you stick to them, so why not try it?
Every quarter I check my goals to see what went well and what didn’t and try to fix it. And now that it’s mid-year I think it’s time to write down my assessment, not just a simple check.
I had already divided my life into 9 areas of focus, and mad this table where I put down the main goal for this year, in comparison to the previous years.
The reason why I included previous years in this table is that my goals are continuous in most of the areas so this will give me a better and clearer view, and since I have started this journey only couple of years ago it won’t be too much to include in there.
Now this table does not hold all details, but the main idea only, the rest of the details are in my planner where I have a section for each area that holds all ideas I can possibly come up with in order to better organize my life in this specific area, and every year or quarter (depends on the length of the project/idea) I take a look at the planner, choose and idea and start working on it, once it’s done or implemented I take on a new one, and so on.. I add details to this section as much as I need: project planning papers, trackers, notes, or a simple brain dump for a specific idea.
Here is how it looks like:
Despite holding a lot of details my sections are not stuffed.. My hand writing is small, I never waste space, and my ideas are condensed and specific, bullet pointed to be easy to manage.
Now that you got the main idea, let’s dive into the juicy stuff.. (Note that I will be talking only about certain goals that I can share publicly, other more specific details or too personal goals will be omitted).
In what concerns health and fitness, this area is working very well. I wanted to stay on track with what I started in 2015, drinking water more often and not eating after 7 PM, which is going very well so far. Also I am still doing my very light exercise routine where I jump ropes, do the plank (I hate it but I do it anyway), and try to fix my posture with few tricks along the day especially while driving, also I no longer take the elevator, stairs only. And I think this is all working well so far. The idea here is not to do a full exercise, but to get used to a certain type of ‘movement’ ever single day, to make it part of my life so when I move to the next step, I won’t break the chain like I always do.
I wanted to consider joining a gym by mid year but that was not essential to me as long as I keep moving for the time being like I mentioned, so I have no problem with that, I’ll keep the gym for later times.
For fun, my main choice was to do something every Friday morning, travel somewhere on the weekends, visit museums or go to concerts, or at least enjoy my favorite early morning walks. I was able to keep the walks but did not manage to do anything else, mainly because I do it alone. I’m not a huge fan of meeting people on my weekends and prefer to keep my weekends for myself, so I did not favor activities that are social in core. However now that the weather is getting hotter by the day my beloved walks might not be feasible now and I’ll have to find another solution.
For friends and family, I wanted to get closer to my extended family, by being always present at the monthly gathering of the family, I manged to do that for the 1st quarter of the year but not the 2nd due to my travels that interfered with the gatherings couple of time.
For self development, my main goal was to read ‘deep work’ meaning not just novels and stories and such but books with real value that add something to me. I wanted to read more of the non fiction books, or fiction from different cultures, and books that I have been postponing reading for long time.. I wanted to read more in my field of work, and more in religion.. I did quite well here although my pace got much slower the past couple of month, nevertheless I never stopped reading a day except the weeks I travel, even if I read only 2 pages.
Also I wanted to listen to podcasts during my commute to work, I did that and I enjoy it tremendously.. I look forward to my long commutes now just to listen to my favorite podcasts.
I also wanted to learn a new skill, but I didn’t manage to so that due to my schedule.. I might reconsider that the next half of the year.
For spirituality I started last year reading Quran with interpretations, which is taking me too long mainly because I do a reading session every weekend only and read other books for the rest of the week.. I have to find a balance somehow because the interpretation is 4 big volumes, can’t postpone my other readings all that time.. I’m going very well for now.. Wanted to include reading other religious books during the holy month of Ramadan, but I didn’t.. So I guess I need more focus in this area.
For my finances, I wanted to revise my budget to make sure I’m on track, so I did.. And I found I am not too much off track, I’m good, but I need to focus more on my savings and maybe do something nice to myself by getting one or two items from my wishlist.. That’s a joyful idea!
As for giving which is all about giving back to community.. I wanted to find some venues to volunteer, and I did some research, but the introvert in me is still holding me back.. However with my Youtube channel I think I’m doing something similar without having to be out there physically doing what I fear the most: Seeing people! I have some ideas to share so why not do it? I am giving back to my community, only it is larger than the one I could’ve reached if I volunteer, and I think I’m better at youtubing because I am actually talking about something I’m quite good at!
That does not mean I ruled out the volunteering thing, I still want to do it and still need a push.. but at least I am doing something of some sort.
And last but not least, my biggest project of the year, my environment.. AKA decluttering my life project! You know.. The one I talk about all the time..
This area was deceived into 3, the physical, the emotional and the relationships.. I did not do so well in the 1st two.. But to my surprise I did quite well in the 3rd! I guess my determination to work on this area gave me enough courage to stand up for myself and say “No”.. No I will not keep a toxic person in my life out of politeness, No I will not go out even if I can’t stand it just because someone else wants to.. No.. A simple word I need to master saying.. My journey is still too long but I’m happy it started… I guess I’ll have to make a separate post about this area in a later time.. There is still so much to be said..
Anyways the physical aspect of this area is not going very well and needs a lot of work.. I’ll do my best to do better in the next 6 months.
And that was it… My mid-year check and updates.. A lot still needs to be done but I can say I am on track, except for the past couple of months where work and travels derailed me a little bit, but I can still manage and control things.
Good luck with your check.