11 goals for 11/11/11

My 24th birthday

In two months, I will be 27. Not such a big milestone, but it will also be 11/11/11, which is pretty epic in the calendar world, so I’ll make the most of it on my end, too. I’m not sure yet how I will celebrate, or whom it will be with, but until then, I have some things I want to do, specifically, 11 things. Eleven things to expand my mind and my heart, to build onto this ideal of wellness I am trying to attain. Things that you can help with, too, if you so desire. Or you can make a list of your own – whatever the number may be.

Here are my 11 by 11/11/11:

1.   Try 11 new recipes.

2.   Give a handwritten note to 11 people.

3.   Run at least 11 miles each week.

4.   Write 11 blog posts.

5.   Do something nice for 11 people.

6.   Do/visit/eat at/try 11 different places, restaurants, or things to do.

7.   Reach out to 11 people not expecting to hear from me.

8.   Read 11 books.

9.   Meet 11 new people.

10. Learn 11 new things.

11. Be happy with who I am.


Small steps for a grand plan

First day of school: definitely a small step in a grand plan!

Today I had one of those come-to-insert-higher-power-of-choice moments. It started as a slight scolding from someone who is looking out for me in more than one way (which I deserved), twisted and turned into “I’ve been where you are” stories, and ended on a positive, action-oriented note.

“Help me help you” isn’t just a memorable line from Jerry Maguire — it’s something we have each heard at least once in our lives, maybe more often when we feel like we’re at a crossing in the woods, in the road, or whatever your path is in life. And in order to to help someone help you, you have to listen, and you have to be willing to take small steps to get to your grand plan – your “grander version of you.”

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Keeping the “Happy” in Happy New Year

Credit: ccsmallbusiness.wordpress.com

You get off the metro, walk into the office, or go into Starbuck’s, and everyone is saying it: Happy New Year! We all are walking around for the first week or two with a glow, fresh from extended holidays, time off, stuffed with good food, and anxious to fulfill our resolutions and achieve our goals for the year.

But before you know it, the little stuff can get to us, dampening that happy feeling that comes with a new year: the line at Starbuck’s is too long or they screw up your order, the metro is delayed, and your to-do list at work is already overwhelming.

So how do we keep the “happy” throughout the year, long past the requisite greetings that come with the first week of January?

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A key to happiness: relishing your accomplishments

Another one down!

Most of us have glamorous, grand goals: to run a marathon, to run for public office, to become president of a company, to write a book, to retire by X age with $X.  And then you have the smaller ones: finish your stack of books, finish your car payment, get a raise, finally clean your apartment.

No matter how big or small, glamorous or boring your goals are, it’s important to take the time to feel good about them, to relish them, to pat yourself on the back. Because for every little goal you accomplish, you are one step closer to your bigger one – and to happiness.

Not everyone has to know about your goals and accomplishments. You may share that you got a promotion or earned a medal in a race, but you may not tell everyone that you finally cleaned out your closet, perfected a family recipe, or had a great second date. Or you may – it’s up to you. What really matters is that you take the time to appreciate what you’ve accomplished for you – because whatever it was, you put time and energy into it.

Here are some of my recent accomplishments, big and small, that make me smile, and feel good about myself. What are yours?

  • Launching the third phase of a website at work – on time.
  • Running my second 10k, and improving my time. It was my third race this year – I just started racing this year.
  • Cooking a damn good chili to kick off fall.
  • Being invited to sit on a panel at a summit for a top fundraising & online database provider.
  • Making new friends after losing others.