anuary is almost over – which means that we have arrived at the final motivational speaker in our goal-setting line up! (If you missed the others, here are links to find what Mr. Mouse has to say about tiny habits, what Ms. Raccoon thinks about starting a chain to help push you towards your dreams, and what Mr. Carrot the Elvis impersonator has to say about being extreme with some of your goals.)
Today, please welcome….MAISIE THE MOTIVATIONAL CATERPILLAR!
Note: if you’re an insect expert, you’re probably upset that a caterpillar only has 6 true legs and I drew 12. And then, to further confuse the issue, my little ant is saying the thing about 6 legs. Apologies. It’s all in the name of art, my friend.
I don’t think Maisie is advocating that you throw up your hands the second a goal or habit starts to feel challenging. Sometimes you just need to keep pushing. If you’re in a pushing phase right now then GO YOU! Hang in there!
With that said, I think Maisie would agree that you don’t need to stay locked into a goal that’s simply not working for you. You’re not a failure to re-assess and change course a little bit (or a lot if that’s what is called for). Sometimes it’s hard to know how a habit or goal is going to work for you until you simply START. Once you’ve been at it for awhile, some adjustment may be necessary. The Goal Police aren’t going to come after you, I promise.
At the beginning of January, I wrote about my goals and habits for the new year that I was aiming to achieve/instill. If you want the short summary of how it’s gone: it’s been awesome. If you want the longer, more nuanced reflection, then you’re in luck – read on, friend!
Since I’ve been tracking my goal progress on my bathroom mirror, it’s super easy to see where I’ve been successful…I have one day left for January, but here’s the nearly-finished month:
As evidenced in the image above, I’ve been most successful in the habit arena. My family was visiting this past week, so I kind of fell off the wagon during that time…but otherwise, I’ve been going strong and plan to continue!
When I look at my Creative Goals and Life Goals for this month, though, it’s a bit of a different story.
Yesterday morning, I had a personal coaching session with Maisie the caterpillar turned chrysalis and reflected on what was going on in the goal arena – because, as you can clearly see, there are a number of goals that I didn’t manage to complete in January.
I think there were a few different factors…
1) I have this chronic disease called Chronoptimism. It’s a real thing. Check Urban Dictionary if you don’t believe me. People without this tendency (like my dear husband Bobby) are genius at being realistic when it comes to planning. I, on the other hand, think I can squeeze in EVERYTHING into two or three hours and also do an awesome job at it with no stress. (Cue insane laughter.)
2) One quarter of January was reserved for family – something I hadn’t factored in when devising my goals. As I mentioned above, my family flew to Miami to celebrate Christmas in January mixed with a Harry Potter World extravaganza. It was extraordinary and I loved every minute. What I didn’t do prior to their visit, however, was scale back my January goals since I would be soaking in time with them for a week.
3) My unwritten but very real goal of posting to this blog 5 times a week has been more intense than I expected. Seeing as I’m a chronoptimist, I should have seen this one coming. Basically, I’ve LOVED posting so frequently and I think it’s my ultimate goal to have an editorial schedule where I do post 5 times a week…but in these beginning stages, it has edged out a lot of other goals.
Oh wait – sorry, but Maisie just grabbed the mic again…
Here’s how that looks in my life: I’ve realized that I have some big goals with this blog. I have a desire to reach a wide audience, form a community, spread joy, and remind you that you are loved, valued, worthy. I also realize that there are some steps I need to take in order for this to happen – for example, my January goal of developing a business card is key. Same with becoming more active on other blogs and forums. All these things have yet to happen, though.
With all of this in mind, I’m taking Butterfly’s advice and starting February off by shifting my goals a bit – not shifting my ultimate goals, but changing some other things in order to keep momentum while also keeping my sanity (sanity is key!).
SO. Starting next week, I’ve decided to move to a posting schedule of four times per week. I’ll be posting on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday. The extra “off” day will give me a chance to create future content, create some killer business cards, connect with other bloggers, and schedule that dentist appointment that alluded me this month. Maybe I’ll crank things back up to posting 5 times a week once I’ve gotten a handle on some of these other areas. For now, though, on Monday, Wednesday, Friday, and Sunday you can absolutely count on me to be here! (Just as a side note, I’m also going to start posting at a uniform time…I’ll let you know once that’s nailed down. Oh! AND if you haven’t already subscribed, please consider entering your email in the sidebar so that you’re informed of new posts!)
This has been a lot of thinking out loud. However, I think it can sometimes be helpful to read the inner workings of another human’s brain – so I hope that’s been the case!
If nothing else, I hope that Madam Butterfly has given you a little freedom as you work towards your goals! Stay ambitious but know that thing can change as you work and grow. That’s it in a nutshell.
See you on Monday, friends!
Dearest Grace, I love your blog entries and applaud your goals, shifting as they may be. I want to say that your artwork is FABULOUS! Hmmm… I can see a whole greeting card line with those cute animals, vegetables, and ant critters. Enjoy la vida Miami! Love from me and SCU!
Thank you so much, Fr. Jack! You’re so wonderful and I LOVE knowing that you’re reading from SCU! A greeting card line would be a dream and so much fun – you will be one of the first to know once Hallmark or Target has picked up my line. :) xoxo
I, too, love your art work, Grace. I think you will love having a four day week posting schedule… you do need time to do the other things you want to accomplish!
Thanks for the support, Gini! I’m already breathing a little easier – and getting more time to craft, which is a super bonus! :) xoxo love you tons
Hey Maisie! Just dropping by to say you make my heart flutter. Love the message of your speech just as much as your anthill groupies!
Thanks for spreading motivation through your impeccably timed metamorphosis.
Also, Grace, thought I’d add that I agree a greeting card line would be great. I would love to see your characters on some merchandise!
Aw, thanks for that validation, Celeste! It would be a dream to have these characters on some merchandise! You will certainly be one of the first to know when it happens. ;)