Back to school. Three words that can cause dread or excitement, depending on the person.
For some students, school is a happy place filled with friends, new experiences and the wonder of learning. For others, it’s an institution with rules to make them toe the line, to think and behave in a way that is unnatural to either the way they were born, the way they were raised, or both. Not to mention the social aspect that can be a major stumbling block for so many.
For some parents, the return to school is a welcome relief from either bored, whiny (not in our house, thank you) kids or from toting them to (not to mention paying for) various summer camps while they still have to work their full-time job. For others, back to school means unwelcome early mornings, too many forms and payments, stressed-out kids and the end of freedom from an overbooked schedule.
It’s not surprising that as a child, I loved going back to school since I eventually became a teacher. Having spent the majority of my life adhering to the school calendar, I always find September to be a reflective time, a time of new beginnings and renewal, hope and expectations for new goals set.
For me, it is a much more effective time to consider where I want to be a year from now, than the over-marketed dead-of-winter celebration of New Years Eve that most people I know don’t celebrate anymore. There is something about the cooling of the air after the heat of summer, new stationery (yes I’m geek 🤓), and even a few new duds (so not a shopper) that make me ready to set some manageable goals for the year/season ahead.
Everyone knows that the trick to succeeding at your goals is to not pick too many. There are a million things I could do to improve myself and my life, even though it’s already pretty fantastic. Like I said in my last post, pacing yourself is super important when you have a chronic illness. I also believe strongly in the KISS (keep it simple stupid) principle in all aspects of my life, especially because of brain fog. It’s all about priorities.
So, my simple and hopefully reachable goals for the next four months. Oh yeah, I like to do it short term because so much can change over a year and also – Christmas! 🎄☃️🎅🏻 I always start thinking about Christmas in September, because I’m a bit of a Christmas freak and I love to make crafts as gifts, much to the chagrin of my extended family. 🤣🤣🤣
Health – Being as active as possible.
1) Work my way up to 6 sun salutations at least 5 days a week. Currently, I’m at four several times a week but consistency is my problem.
2) Get my ass back to ballet class. I have to stick with the beginner class this time though. Last time, I went with the level of my (ancient) training, thinking that I would pace myself. Ha! I went too hard and burned out in a few months.
Work – Embrace my new career as a writer. I had to resist putting those two words in quotations. Getting there.
1) Write 5000 words a week until I finish this first draft, which I hope to have done long before Christmas. When I put it away to percolate for a while, I may haul out my first ‘accidental manuscript‘ and see if I can sort out the structure, now that I understand it a bit better. I’m hoping to get a lot of work done at the writing retreat I’m going to in 10 days – very excited about that! Also, sign up for NaNoWriMo in November.
2) Continue posting here, connecting with people and learning more about writing and the chronic and invisible illness community. I’m coming up on my 3 month anniversary of my first post, which is hard to believe. Best thing I’ve done in the last three years!
Personal – Pacing myself and connecting with others.
1) Continue to stay connected closely with my husband and children, regardless of how focussed we all may become on our individual projects. This goes for my extended family and friends too. I’m not great at in staying in touch with my outer circle on a regular basis but I have a wonderful, understanding support network that understands that, for which I am forever grateful.
2) Continue to reflect daily on everyone and everything I have to be thankful for. This is an easy one! 😊
So there we go, I’ve put my goals out there for all to see. If someone had told me I would be sharing myself publicly like this a year ago, I would have scoffed. They say it’s the best way to make yourself accountable, though. I’ll keep you posted!
What about you? What are your hopes, dreams, goals for the back to school new year?
Thanks for stopping by! Have a wonderful week!