2018 Goals – February Update

After a year hiatus, I am back to making goals. For the added accountability, and hopefully to inspire you with your own goals, I am posting them here with monthly updates. 🙂

Image by condesign (2014) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

In that vein, here is my update for February:

PERSONAL GOALS

1. Read at least one chapter of the Bible each day (On track with this. Just finished Exodus and about to begin Leviticus.)

2. Cut out sugar and dairy for at least 8 weeks (fast Wednesdays & Fridays) (The 8 weeks are over, but now that it is Lent, I am continuing with this. Doing well but cheating on the weekends.)

3. Read one personal book per month (fiction, self-help, spiritual, etc.) (On track with this. Read People can’t Drive You Crazy if You don’t Give Them the Keys by Mike Bechtle.)

MARRIAGE GOALS

4. Go on one date with Michael per month (Thanks to St. Valentine’s Day, we got TWO dates this month. 🙂 )

5. Send Michael (and Andrew) at least one love/text note per week. (On track with this.)

FAMILY GOALS

6. Read one book out loud to Andrew per month (On track this month. We read the Explorer – will come back with author – and it was excellent.)

7. Go on a family vacation (Have been discussing this with Michael working out the details and plan.)

8. Pray with Andrew daily (daily devotional book before or after school) (Done in February.)

FINANCIAL GOALS

9. Rebuild emergency fund ($1,000) (Started, finally, but very low.)

10. Save at least $10 per week (Done for February. We were actually able to save a little more most weeks this month.)

BUSINESS GOALS

11. Launch two courses/programs this year (Still working out the details for these.)

12. Do at least 2 FB lives per month (aiming for weekly!) (For the last three weeks I have done two Facebook Lives per week, so definitely on track this month.)

Have you made any goals for 2018? If so, do share in the comments! I would love to support and encourage you in any way I can! How are you doing with your goals? Do share!

2018 Goals – January Update

In 2017, I did an experiment and didn’t make any goals for the year. My focus was on scheduling the things I wanted to do. However, it was pretty much a bust. 🙁 Don’t get me wrong, the scheduling part was great and I did get a lot of “stuff” done. The problem was that I felt scattered most of the time and unfocused.

This past year was a bigger challenge than 2016 and I didn’t think that was possible. And, not having specific goals left me feeling unhinged a lot of the time. I need structure. Goals give me that structure and allows me to have boundaries and white space. I also missed the accountability of not posting my goals online. It gives me incentive and have been told from readers that they like reading about the goals.

2018 Goals Update January

Image by condesign (2014) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

This year, I am going to combine the scheduling with the goals. I have 12 goals for different aspects of my life and I will be taking some time today to schedule those goals into my calendar (in bite-sized chunks). My hope is that by combining them both, I will have a scheduled yet focused year. I am also posting them here for the accountability and will give monthly updates about how I am doing.

Here is how January went down:

PERSONAL GOALS

1. Read at least one chapter of the Bible each day (On track with this. Working my way through Genesis)

2. Cut out sugar and dairy for at least 8 weeks (fast Wednesdays & Fridays) (Mostly good. I’ve had some slip ups but still doing better than I had in a while. Now that my birthday month is over, I will be more strict.)

3. Read one personal book per month (fiction, self-help, spiritual, etc.) (Killing it! Read two books in January and halfway done with two others.)

MARRIAGE GOALS

4. Go on one date with Michael per month (January date done.)

5. Send Michael (and Andrew) at least one love/text note per week. (Done every week for Michael missed a couple for Andrew. I need to be more mindful of this.)

FAMILY GOALS

6. Read one book out loud to Andrew per month (I have been reading the Acts of the Apostles out loud for his Religion class. I also read one short book to him.)

7. Go on a family vacation (Have been discussing this with Michael working out the details and plan.)

8. Pray with Andrew daily (daily devotional book before or after school) (Done for January.)

FINANCIAL GOALS

9. Rebuild emergency fund ($1,000) (Not started yet.)

10. Save at least $10 per week (Done for January.)

BUSINESS GOALS

11. Launch two courses/programs this year (Still working out the details for these.)

12. Do at least 2 FB lives per month (aiming for weekly!) (I’ve had some tech issues but have done a couple of these. Need to be more consistent.)

Have you made any goals for 2018? If so, do share in the comments! I would love to support and encourage you in any way I can! How are you doing with your goals? Do share!

My Goals for 2018

(Piggybacking off of yesterday’s FB live about spiritual goals, today I am sharing my other goals)

In 2017, I did an experiment and didn’t make any goals for the year. My focus was on scheduling the things I wanted to do. However, it was pretty much a bust. 🙁 Don’t get me wrong, the scheduling part was great and I did get a lot of “stuff” done. The problem was that I felt scattered most of the time and unfocused.

This past year was a bigger challenge than 2016 and I didn’t think that was possible. And, not having specific goals left me feeling unhinged a lot of the time. I need structure. Goals give me that structure and allows me to have boundaries and white space. I also missed the accountability of not posting my goals online. It gives me incentive and have been told from readers that they like reading about the goals.

2018 Goals

Image by condesign (2014) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

This year, I am going to combine the scheduling with the goals. I have 12 goals for different aspects of my life and I will be taking some time today to schedule those goals into my calendar (in bite-sized chunks). My hope is that by combining them both, I will have a scheduled yet focused year. I am also posting them here for the accountability and will give monthly updates about how I am doing. (Any encouragement or push would be much appreciated!)

So, without further ado, here hare my goals:

PERSONAL GOALS

1. Read at least one chapter of the Bible each day

2. Cut out sugar and dairy for at least 8 weeks (fast Wednesdays & Fridays)

3. Read one personal book per month (fiction, self-help, spiritual, etc.)

MARRIAGE GOALS

4. Go on one date with Michael per month

5. Send Michael (and Andrew) at least one love/text note per week

FAMILY GOALS

6. Read one book out loud to Andrew per month

7. Go on a family vacation

8. Pray with Andrew daily (daily devotional book before or after school)

FINANCIAL GOALS

9. Rebuild emergency fund ($1,000)

10. Save at least $10 per week

BUSINESS GOALS

11. Launch two courses/programs this year

12. Do at least 2 FB lives per month (aiming for weekly!)

Have you made any goals for 2018? If so, do share in the comments! I would love to support and encourage you in any way I can!

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P.S.: In an unrelated note, I want to remind you that today is the First Friday of the Month.

My Word for 2017

For the last couple of years, I have followed the example of Chris Brogan and set “3 words” to focus on for each year. This year, I am doing it a little differently. As I was praying for my words, only one word stood out:

COURAGE

No matter how I prayed or thought about it. It is the only word that stood out for me so I guess God is telling me something here!

My Word for 2017

Thus, 2017 will be a year of courage for me. It will be a year of action and a year of getting out of my comfort zone. I don’t know for sure what this will look like but I know it will mean some stretching and growing on my part. It makes me nervous but I know it will be a good thing!

I do know that I want to put myself out there more in an authentic and helpful way. This blog is all about encouraging and supporting women in their journey of faith and I want to do just that. And that leads me to my question:

What do you need? What struggles or questions of faith are you having? Would you be interested in coaching, retreats or courses about our Catholic faith? How do you think you can best be supported in living out a flourishing Catholic life? You don’t have to answer publicly in the comments. Feel free to use the contact page or email me a carol (@) simplecatholiciving (dot) com.

I’m not Making Goals This Year and Here’s Why

If you are a regular reader here, you know that a few years ago I switched from making “resolutions” to making “goals.” It was more of a mindset and perspective thing but it made a difference for me. I made those goals specific and measurable and I made great strides in accomplishing my goals.

I'm Not Making Yearly Goals This Year

Nevertheless, I sometimes got overwhelmed looking at the whole year and everything I want to do. (Anyone else?) Last year in 2016, especially, was a challenge for me. I struggled physically, emotionally, and felt like failure when I feel behind in my goals/plans. Some goals, like the making videos, were dropped altogether.  By October, I knew I needed to make a change but felt stuck.

That is why I decided not to make yearly goals this year, and instead, I made an outline. As a writer, I often read or hear about the importance of using outlines to guide authors in their writing endeavors. Thus, I sat down and wrote a broad outline of the things I want to accomplish for 2017 and used my calendar to fill in deadline dates. As the year progresses, I will readjust monthly and quarterly.

How does this look like?

For example, I want to write/create a lot of books in 2017. Thus, I  made an outline of how many books I want to write each month for January, February, and March. Then, I took my calendar and picked a “due date” for each book. Then, at the end of each month, I will re-evaluate and see if my goal is realistic or needs tweaking.

For January, I want to create a planner and a short grammar guide (for my carolda.com website). Thus, I took some time during the week between Christmas and New Year’s to fill in the blanks: I created a working title, scheduled writing time, and made a bare-bones outline of the books themselves.

Basically, instead of making goals this year, I am scheduling this year. 🙂

I am really excited about this plan and I can’t wait to see what the New Year will bring. I am ready to take better control and be more intentional with my life and business! How about you? What are your plans for the New Year? What are you doing to take control and make 2017 your best year yet? Do share!

P.S. Don’t worry, I won’t bug you will posts every month and/or quarterly with updates!

Goals for 2016 Update

I can’t believe it is June. Really?It is hard to believe that we are halfway through the year. How did that happen? I don’t know about you, but this year isn’t exactly shaping up the way I thought it would. My father-in-law had a heart attack and my husband had two heath concerns. Well, life happens and it is important to be flexible – something I struggle with!

To help me refocus, and as a way to stay accountable, I am sharing an update on how I am making out with my goals so far. It hasn’t been perfect by any stretch of the imagination, but I am doing pretty well for the most part. It really has helped me to print out the list and check off each item as it is done. Anyway, without further ado, here is the update:

Image by condesign (2014) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

Image by condesign (2014) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

Marriage Goals

  • Have a date night with Michael at least once a month –So far, we have made every month!
  • Read one book on marriage per month – Except for May, I’ve read at least one marriage/family book per month.
  • Write Michael a love note at least once a month – on track here.

Motherhood Goals

  • Read at least one book to Andrew per month – I haven’t necessarily finished a book a month with him, but I have been continuing to read to him, at least a little bit, every day.
  • Write Andrew a love note at least once per month (hat tip to Crystal Paine for the idea) – on track here and it has been fun watching how much he enjoys the notes!

Personal Goals

  • Exercise/stretch at least 3 times per week – I had some severe leg pain that preventing me from exercising for a while but I have been doing my walking tape almost every day since the beginning of May.
  • Do one bible study a month – if you are following along, you know I am on track (except for the session 3 reflection) with this because I have been blogging through the book!

Business Goals

  • Officially launch my self-publishing company – I am planning on launching this month, God willing.
  • Create/Write one journal or book per month – This has fallen by the wayside. I have put together a lot of ideas, but I’ve only completed three journals so far this year. Hoping to get back on track this month.
  • Write 3 blog posts per week – Mostly on track with this, give or take a week or two.
  • Do daily “Mercy Moment” Periscope, Monday through Friday – If all goes as planned, I am hoping to begin this next week!

Financial Goals

  • Save at least $10 per month – Not going as well as I hoped. We ran into some unexpected expenses which derailed our plan; however, I am hoping to get back on track soon.
  • Create a monthly budget with Michael and stick with it! – This is an on again/off again thing still. With Michael on the road so much, we don’t always get a chance to sit down together to do this. However, i am supposed to be taking over the bills soon and I will do it on my own, if I have to. 🙂

The perfectionist in me wishes I was further along with some of my goals but it is what it is. The good news is that I’ve made some progress and I keep reminding myself that that is enough. I just have to remember that I am further along than I would have been if I hadn’t made any goals at all. 🙂

Now it is your turn. How are you doing with achieving your goals? Do let us know in the comments!

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Tweetable: Goals for 2016 Update

Goals for 2016

Like many others, I have spend some time last week reflecting on how I did with my 2015 goals and planning for the new year. I didn’t do too bad with my goals last year; however, finishing up school sucked up most of my time and energy that most of the goals were put aside. Thankfully, I graduated in May (with high honors!) and took a much needed break.

One big thing that I was able to do was self-publish a prayer journal, Catholic Prayer Journal for Women. It was quite a learning experience and I plan to do more (see below).

Goals for 2016

Image by condesign (2014) via Pixabay, CCO Public Domain

In any case, for 2016, I am streamlining my goal setting and keeping them (hopefully!) short and actionable. Here they are:

Marriage Goals

  • Have a date night with Michael at least once a month
  • Read one book on marriage per month
  • Write Michael a love note at least once a month

Motherhood Goals

  • Read at least one book to Andrew per month (Now that he is reading so well on his own, this is falling by the wayside and I don’t want to let that happen anymore.)
  • Write Andrew a love note at least once per month (hat tip to Crystal Paine for the idea)

Personal Goals

  • Exercise/stretch at least 3 times per week
  • Do one bible study a month

Business Goals

  • Officially launch my self-publishing company
  • Create/Write one journal or book per month
  • Write 3 blog posts per week
  • Do daily “Mercy Moment” Periscope, Monday through Friday (more on that soon)

Financial Goals

  • Save at least $10 per month
  • Create a monthly budget with Michael and stick with it!

That’s it. My biggest goal is to be consistent in following these goals! On Wednesday, I will share my three words for 2016. Now its your turn. What are your goals for 2016? I’d love to know so please do share in the comments!

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Tweetable: Goals for 2016

Weekly Goals

Set GoalsMarriage/Parenting/Home Management Goals

1. Send Michael a “love text” at least once this week.

2. Spend at least 30 minutes a day just having fun with Andrew.

3. Clean out my dresser drawers.

Personal Goals

4. Get up at 6am  at least five days this week.

5. Spend at least 15 minutes a day reading the bible and praying the rosary daily.

6. Exercise at least 15 minutes a day, 5 times this week.

Educational/Blogging/Business Goals

7. Go to Georgian Court to get my books. (The break went too fast! Classes start next Monday.)

8. Blog at least twice this week.

9. Continue working on the grammar website (grammarplace.com).

10. Go through some paperwork and old notebooks and sort/get rid of as much as possible.

Now it’s your turn. Share what you have going on this week in the comments, or join us over at Money Saving Mom with your own goals.

Goals for 2015

Last year, in spite of knowing that I had a busy year before me, I tried to focus on being intentional, rather than Goals for 2015reactive. I have to admit that it was very challenging and I don’t think that I was particularly successful in my attempt. However, that doesn’t mean I am going to give up. This year I am going to try again, and hopefully my 3 Words will help me focus and remind me to pay attention to what is important.

At the same time, things have to get done, so here is an overview of the major things I want to accomplish this year, while trying to be realistic:

Marriage/Parenting/Home Management Goals

1. Have a date night with Michael at least once a month.

2. Send Michael a “love text” at least once a week.

3. Have focused quality time with Andrew at least 3x week (besides homeschooling and usual family time, such as chores, before bed routine, etc.)

4. Finally put up some pictures and decorate our apartment. I am a minimalist at heart, but our place is pretty bare, even by my standards. LOL! I am not much a decorator but it is about time I learn.

Personal Goals

5. Get up at 6am five days a week. Trying to force myself to get up early everyday seems to set me up for failure. So, I am hoping that giving myself grace to sleep in twice a week (Sunday and one other day), I will put less pressure on myself.

6. Spend at least 15 minutes a day reading the bible and praying the rosary daily.

7. Exercise at least 15 minutes a day, 5 times a week. We bought Andrew the Wii U for Christmas this year and it inspired me to break out my Wii Fit, so now I actually look forward to getting up to exercise.

Educational/Blogging/Business Goals

8. Keep up with my course work and graduate in May! I can’t believe it is almost over. I can’t wait!

9. Blog here at Simple Catholic Living at least once a week during school and 3x a week after I graduate.

10. Finish and launch my grammar website (grammarplace.com).

That’s it. I’m sure that these goals may be modified over the year, but I am okay with that. At least I have a guide to help me stay on track.

Now it’s your turn. What are your goals (or resolutions, if your prefer) for 2015?

Three Words for 2015

3 Words 2015Last year, I got the idea from Chris Brogan to pick three words to focus on for the coming year. My words were intentional, love and brave. Now, again, it didn’t go perfectly, but I loved having the words as a way to stay focus or refocus as needed. That is why I am doing it again. 🙂

My three words for 2015 are Relationships, Prayer, and Grace.

It is very easy for me to lose focus on the importance of relationships – relationship with my husband, son, family, friends, God, and others. I am an introvert by nature and I love being along and doing solitary work. I guess that is why I love to write and read! I also have a detailed eye, and tend to be a perfectionist, which in turn, sometimes makes me a little cranky to be around. :/ (Just keeping it real, here!) Anywhoo, this semester, I am taking five classes (15 credits), and I am hoping that having the word “relationships” as one of my words, it will help me not get 100 percent sucked in to my work.

In order to focus on relationships, I need to stay grounded in prayer. My relationship with God must be first, no matter how busy I am. Therefore, I hope by having this word, it will remind me to skee to pray always!

Finally, my last word is grace because I know I will fail and this word will remind me not to beat myself up when I do! It will also be a reminder that no one is perfect and I must give, not only myself, but others grace as well. 🙂

Now, what are your words? Do you have one or more words to help you stay focused on your goals and intentions for the year? If so, share in the comments!