Thursday, September 22, 2011

100 Days of Little Ways

“Failure is not falling down but refusing to get up.” ~ Chinese Proverb

It has been awhile since I started this blog. Often times we take two steps forward, then suffer three steps back. So long as we continue to strive for forward movement, even baby steps count so I've decided to dust this blog off and begin again.

The Beginning of the End
At 12:01 am, the last 100 days of the year begin. Many of us begin each year with a list of resolutions or goals. How many of those have you accomplished? Now is the time to take some steps to finish the year strong! Focus and utilize this time to close out 2011 with forward movement in little ways to accomplish some of the things you started out this year doing. Use this an opportunity to learn more about yourself so that you can begin 2012 with a whole new grounded perspective. What did you begin and stop? What stopped you from reaching for those accomplishments?

For the next 100 days, I will work on:
* Gratitude
* Physical Health
* Emergency Preparedness
* Finances
* Self-Knowledge

These sound like lofty goals but I'm not trying to accomplish everything to do with each subject. Instead, I'm breaking them down into a few focused smaller steps that I can complete in 100 days. Here's how:

As many of you know, last year ended very roughly for me: the man I dated for almost 10 years died suddenly Thanksgiving weekend; a young man who called me "Madre" decided life was just too much to bear and took his own life in December while leaving a 7 page letter in which he asked me to take care of his mom, the very next day my great aunt lost her battle with cancer. To top it all off, the company I work for was acquired by another company and it was announced 2 days before Christmas that the company that bought us was also being purchased - so none of us knew if we'd continue to have jobs. Needless to say, it was an incredibly stressful time. I realize that the anniversaries of these events is rapidly approaching so for the next 100 days, without fail, I will post things I'm grateful for every single day. This is to remind me of the good things I have in my life as I continue to work through the pain that still comes from those losses.

Physical Health
One of my goals for 2011 was to get into better shape. I did a ton of walking (it was my therapy) then I began to hit the gym 3 days a week. This was something I was feeling great about actually doing!! Unfortunately, that all stopped when I tore a tendon in my right ankle. I've spent months trying to avoid surgery and recover from the injury. From what I'm hearing from the medical community, I might not complete this recovery in 2011. This means I need to find an alternative. Who would have ever guess that I'd miss the bane of my existence, that damned elliptical machine? For the next 100 days, I will continue to do the necessary exercises to regain the range of motion, etc in my foot as well as begin some isometric and dumbbell exercises. This won't allow me to be in great physical condition but it is definitely better than nothing. It's still forward movement towards the goal. Baby steps, right?

Emergency Preparedness
This year my life has been filled with unique utility issues. LOL! A gas main broke at my apartment complex. It took a month and a half before the gas was restored at my apartments. Even then, it is just a temporary fix. This meant no hot water and no ability to cook in my own home. That sure made things interesting! Then just a few weeks ago, we experienced a huge blackout here in California. From Southern Orange County, through all of San Diego County, into Yuma, Arizona and all the way down into Rosarito, Mexico. This all brought to light (no pun intended) that we needed to prepare better for such emergencies. For the next 100 days, I will compile an emergency kit for my home as well as my car. I will work with my family to devise a plan should a natural disaster hit or should we experience another outage.

Another goal for 2011 has been to get my finances in better order. I'm proud to say that I have managed to put aside my emergency fund and pay off five student loans. What an amazing feeling!! Now I need to continue my snowball payments to get completely debt free! I recently ran a credit report and there are a few things I truly need to clean up. So for the next 100 days, I will strive to accomplish that. Since there are three credit reporting agencies and they have up to 30 days to make any corrections once notified, then 100 days will be the perfect amount of time to do this.

I want to finish this year by learning more about myself. I will begin every morning with 15-20 minutes of meditation. I'm also going to strive to answer some very deep, insightful and probably uncomfortable questions about myself as well as make a vision board/journal. I have a list of 101 questions from The Personal Excellence Blog (I love her site) as well as the 62 from the Life Literacy Lab. These should help me to learn more about myself and help me to focus on the things I truly want in my life.

Won't you join me in this journey? What will you strive to do for the next 100 days?


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