Well, it’s official…I turned 29 yesterday! I’m not a huge fan of making a big deal about birthdays (says the person who started a website based on a single birthday), so it was nice to just keep things low-key. As is tradition, my coworkers decorated my work space (see above for an amazing The Office reference from my fellow TV nerd, Doug) and gave me a lovely card and cake, along with my choice of an Amazon gift (spiralizer FTW!). I was also lucky to have some of my favorite clients for personal training sessions and an early shift meant I could take it easy the rest of the day. Believe me, I had grand plans about what I would do between work and dinner – I would at LEAST write a blog post (after all, my birthday IS the bookmark for this whole thing), do some yoga, take Rocky for a walk, AND maybe even cross of another goal to really start my 29th year on the right foot. In the end I accomplished…absolutely none of it.
But isn’t that just the way it goes? We put ALL of our items on the To Do List and give ourselves an unrealistic amount of time to do it, and then get frustrated and discouraged when it doesn’t all going according to plan. As a big list maker, I do this ALL. THE. TIME. While I do believe there are great benefits to making lists and having structure, I’ve had to learn that there is a bit of a mental toll to only seeing like 2 out of 20 items crossed off at the end of the day/week/month/whatever. It sets you up to feel like you can’t accomplish anything because you weren’t able to do EVERYTHING. I know from experience that things like self-care and downtime don’t tend to make these lists, because isn’t that what we’re trying to reduce or eliminate by “doing” things? Unfortunately, this means that if you’re like me, you have a hard time enjoying your free time and days off because you’re worried about not being “productive”…which usually leads to being less productive (hello, Netflix binge)…which leads to feeling really s****y about yourself. So that’s a “goal” of mine in itself this year – be realistic with my time and allow myself to get away from the lists sometimes and just enjoy being present. However, I’m not putting that on the “goals list”, because doesn’t that defeat the point a bit? 🙂
So what DID I do on my birthday after work?
- Cuddle with Rocky (obviously)
- Scroll through my Facebook notifications and feel grateful for all of the great people from all corners of my life wishing my a happy birthday (seriously, you all are great)
- Make myself a G & S (gin & seltzer!)
- Read (is anyone else reading “I’ll Be Gone in the Dark” by Michelle McNamara?? I have to read it in the daytime because it’s so spooky and I’m a chicken)
- Make dinner with Brian (who brought wine, roses, and cake home – lucky!)
- Binge watch the last few episodes of “Great British Baking Show” Season 5 (thank you, Netflix gods!) while mowing down on cake
- Fall asleep in bed watching said baking show
And you know what? I don’t feel the least bit guilty about not hitting my goals for the day. That’s not to say I didn’t have thoughts of “ugh I really SHOULD be doing something” (we’ve talked about “should-y situations” already…), but at the end of the day it didn’t matter. There’s always tomorrow, or in my case, 364 days to go.
While it is a little fun to now say “my last year in my twenties”, there really isn’t a whole lot of difference between 28 and 29. Where I DO feel it is in knowing my self-imposed deadline is now technically less than a year away and so far I’ve crossed off one goal – yes, it was a BIG ONE, but I was secretly hoping that getting a couple month jump start on the year would mean I would be tackling the goals left and right. Surprise, surprise – it’s just a big To Do List!
So instead, I did some thinking today about where I might want to set my sights next and just start chipping at things as much as I’m able to. Getting this blog post out is a good start and I hope to write more frequently throughout the year, even if it isn’t goal-meeting specific. Stay tuned for another post that will discuss my difficulties with calling for appointments for myself, which I’ve already started to tackle by seeing a new primary care provider last week (one down, two more health pros to go!). I’m also going to be adding new goals to the list as I go, starting with two new goals I’ll be talking about in my next post – check out the updated goals list for a sneak peek!
Overall, I’m feeling optimistic and motivated about the year ahead, while also trying to be kind to myself and realistic about meeting my goals. This is something I work with my clients on all the time and now will be doing my best to apply it to my own life – if you have any tips and tricks, I would love to hear them in the comments below!
Thank you for reading – here’s to 29!