I’ve spent the last week, ok actually several weeks, telling myself that it is time to get organized. It’s time to make a blog plan. It’s time to make a human plan. And a meal plan. It’s time to write down my personal goals for the year. And my parenting goals. And the list doesn’t stop.
You know how this goes. January 1 hits and everyone is talking about goals and personal growth and organization and words of the year. It is invigorating. Except when you are exhausted. When you are exhausted, the thought of making a plan is more than daunting. All the things just swirl around in your head. I’ll say it. I am exhausted. I am down right overwhelmed. I don’t even begin to know where to start.
So I stick to the simple things. I make waffles. I shop for knick-knacks to dress up my living room tables. (Side note: I don’t even like knick-knacks. You try searching for functional side/entry/console table styling that does not involve knick-knacks and let me know what you find.) I shop for clothes that I am probably never going to buy. I spend an inordinate amount of time on Polyvore creating mock ups of every corner of my house. I scan articles on other blogs for ideas about how to get my home organized. I realize that I’m already doing most of those things. I scan articles on how to set goals and organize and grow your blog. And this gem hit me: less planning, more doing.
My first thought? Yeah, right. I spent the entire last year flying by the seat of my pants, always worried if I would get a blog post up. I spent the entire year parenting by the seat of my pants. You can’t be consistent (which, by the way, is what people want according to everyone who is anyone - in blogging and parenting) if you aren’t organized.
But wait. Less planning, more doing. Isn't that really just my word of the year in sheep's clothing? Yes, I think it is. I think it really means it is time to explore Thank you, Hallie of Corals and Congnacs.
And while all of these sugar plums - to plan or not to plan - were swirling around in my head, I received the most amazing text from my cousin. She said, “you look at other bloggers and wonder how they get everything done…I look at you and think how does she get everything done?” I’m editing here. There were a few more exclamation points and question marks and a list of things that, bless her, she thinks I actually do get done. And it reminded me of something I realized about myself when planning the kids’ gingerbread party last month. My internal motto is most definitely go big or go home. I do not like half-ass. My idea of sufficient is someone else's idea of exceptional. And because I know this, I also know that my idea of exceptional is probably someone else's idea of sufficient. I know that I have high expectations of myself and success for me will always be a moving target. Here's the thing though. I do these things that some people think are crazy (like baking 15 gingerbread houses for a bunch of four-year-olds or making waffles from scratch on a Wednesday morning) because I love to do them.
There it is. If I’m going to blog, I want to rock it. I want to write about things I love. I want to be proud of every single post I put out. I want to be hitting publish on content that helps someone, somewhere do something they've never done or smile or laugh or create something they love. I don't think writing a menu plan does any of that. And I think this is why I always feel behind. What I need is not less organization, more doing. What I need is different organization, less procrastination, less perfection, more doing.
So I am going to plan but I am also going to incorporate my life into my blog rather than my blog into my life. We are better at things when we are passionate about them. If I can explore, if I can embrace the crazy, if I can succeed at living rather than existing, don’t you want to come along? Perhaps on our way we can invent a new sort of blog. Let’s get back to blogging’s roots. I want this to be a true web log where we will do more than just make supper. That's the thing about exploration. I don't have to have my goals all lined up on January 1. I can make them up as I go.
Don't worry. We will still make waffles.
Comments? Suggestions? Let’s hear it.
P.S. I spotted this great goal template on Pinterest a couple of weeks ago (I tried to find the original link but no go). I took the liberty of copying the prompts, reordering them, and adding a couple of my own. Here’s what I’ve got so far.
a new skill I would like to learn…buy less, choose well.
a new food I would like to try….making bread, mastering waffles, and experimenting with tagines.
a place I would like to visit…my garden shed weekly to keep up on project life.
a good deed I am going to do…teach my children acts of service.
a good habit I am going to form…drinking more water and eating more real food.
a bad habit I am going to break…checking my phone far too often and being on my phone while with my kids.
a letter I would like to write…a hand written note to at least one person every month
a person I hope to be more like…myself.
I'm going to do better at…forgiving myself, being present with my kids, and practicing a little more kindness, a little less judgment.
Care to leave your goals in the comment section?