#quantified2016: one month down

January 31, 2016

Day designer planner review

January, that long, depressing, wet and poor month is finally at an end. You probably listened to all the goal-setting podcasts. You charged that gym membership. You bought a nutribullet and juiced ALL THE THINGS.

I didn’t actually write a post about this before the turning of the calendar, but I did do my goal-setting at the beginning of the year. Happily most of them were continuations of things I’d started to put in place in 2015…

Goal 1: Go to the gym 3-5x per week:
Good for the health, improved focus, more oxygen in the body etc etc etc…why wouldn’t you want to do this? Oh yeah cause the gym can be boring. That’s why.

How’d I do in January?
Thankfully for this, I had a bit of a run-up having gotten into a routine of going at lunchtimes from around August onwards. But following a busy work month and then a decadent Christmas period, getting back into the swing in the early weeks following new year were tough (seriously how quickly do you lose muscle mass??) but from the 10th onwards I’ve hit at least 3 sessions a week. Hurrah! Now I’m looking to get some LISS exercise in – maybe a swim or a yoga class – on the weekdays that I’d usually rest, and keep my weekends free for whatever I fancy. Pro tip: episodes of the Mindy project are A++ treadmill partners.

Day designer and Elise Joy daily tracker

Goal 2: Get up before 7am on weekdays, drink water & do a Headspace session
Since going caffeine-free, the ability to get up early has been a surprising perk. So I thought I’d try and do as the productivity gurus do and establish a morning routine…

How’d I do in January?
First two weeks? Smashed it. Third week of January…? Ouch. Slid off the wagon and hit the ground with a startling thump. But, I guess I’m learning a bit of forgiveness (and recovering some grit), because the last week I made the effort to get right back on track. And when sheer determination alone fails, use cute stationary and a well-designed habit tracker to keep you going. The one habit that is finally starting to stick is drinking water as soon as I wake up. I used to probably not drink anything until my first cup of tea in the office. But a month of breaking my fast with water instead of food has already shown me how much better I feel when I do it, and going to the gym means I get enough water later in the day too. I love it when a plan comes together…

Good cup of coffee and a day designer planner

Goal 3: work on a passion project at least 15 minutes a day

How many things do you start but never finish? Me? Lots. That’s why I was somewhat suprised to find out that I was an Upholder in Gretchen Rubin’s 4 Tendencies quiz (even took it twice, a few days apart and answered according to my thoughts at the time – same result) because sometimes it feels like I let personal projects slide too much. Now I think, perhaps that’s not the case… I’ve just been prioritising the wrong things.

How’d I do in January?

Well…not too shabbily! I have something I’m working on that in absolutely over the moon with progress on, and I can’t wait to actually see materialise. I’ve been setting weekly deadlines and the morning times have been vital time to sit and think about them without the rest of the day’s obligations starting their inner chuntering in your head. Funnily enough I made better progress in the first 2 weeks, when I was actively setting myself to-do items for the morning. Lesson learned! Second lesson: not using Instagram to wake up your face = much more productive work day.

So, February, here’s the deal:

  • Continue the personal hibernation: try to get good sleep and get up early. Do the work now and enjoy the summer when it comes.
  • Review and revise! Do the work and keep setting the micro goals, because mini, constant goals really do work.
  • Don’t give up on the week because you didn’t manage one perfect day
  • Perfect days don’t really exist, btw
  • Stay off the social media until the most important task of the day is done!
  • Keep eating well, get to the gym 4x for at least 1 week in the month.
  • Remember to keep the end goal in mind: because you really want to get there, and you’re going to lose sight of it once in a while. Don’t give up!

How are your goals going? Let me know below! I’ve also been enjoying my friend Audrey’s (much more amusing than mine) foray into her 2016 goals.

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